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The Cardinal Fesch according to Canova

Antonio Canova, Bust of Cardinal Fesch. Ajaccio, Musée Fesch
Antonio Canova, Bust of Cardinal Fesch. Ajaccio, Musée Fesch

Housed at the Musée Fesch in Ajaccio is a bust depicting the cardinal Fesch, sculpted by Antonio Canova. The cardinal is represented in a frontal pose, with his face turned slightly to the left. His hair is combed straight back and then curls behind the ears. His expression is calm and his gaze sharp.
In this portrait, commissioned from Canova in 1807 but made the following year, Napoleon’s maternal uncle, a great lover of Italian art, is presented in all of his refined elegance, emphasized by the choice of simple, almost rigorously so, clothing, barely but meaningfully animated by the presence of the cross of the Legion of Honour.
In the Canova museum in Possagno one finds a plaster model of this work. Another exemplar with a few variations was noted in the early 1960s on the antiquarian art market.

Antonio Canova, Bust of Joseph Fesch
Musée Fesch
Rue Cardinal Fesch, 50–52

The museum is open according to the following schedule
From 1 October to 30 April: Monday, Wednesday and Saturday from 10 AM to 5 PM; Thursday, Friday and the third Sunday of the month from 12 PM to 5 PM.
From 2 May to 30 September: Monday, Wednesday and Saturday from 10.30 AM to 6 PM; Thursday, Friday and Sunday from 12 PM to 6 PM; Thursdays during the month of August, the museum remains open until 8.30 PM
Day of closure: Tuesdays.
The museum is closed on the following holidays: 25 December, 1 January, 1 November, 11 November, 18 March, Easter Sunday, 1 May.

Admission ticket: full 8.00 euros; reduced 5.00 euros; reduced for tourism operators partnered with the museum 4.00 euros