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Old Quebecois Sculpture

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Old Quebecois Sculpture

The origins of sculpture in Quebec date back to the latter half of the 17th century. Local artists would be called upon to create sculpted pieces to be used to decorate churches. Wood, a plentiful resource, was the principal material employed.

Sculpture encountered difficulties when New France fell into English hands, in 1760. But the economy gradually recovered, and new parishes were created due to the increase in population, so once again sculptors were in high demand.

Several profane works were equally produced at the time, in particular for shipyards. Figureheads and bas-reliefs were crafted to decorate new vessels. Industrialization as well as the appearance of new sculpture techniques in the 19th century, including plaster statuary, tolled the bell for traditional wood sculpture in Quebec.

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