French, 1892–1979

Paul Fernand Simon was the son of the painters Lucien and Jeanne Simon and received a complete bourgeois education in his home at Montparnasse. While he first set out to become a doctor, Simon redirected his studies toward the fine arts and studied architecture, draughtsmanship, and sculpture with Antoine Bourdelle, among other masters.

In 1913, Simon was enlisted for military service in Rouen, fought in the Battle of the Marne, and was held as a prisoner of war for several months following. After the First World War ended and he familiarized himself with his own artistic process and interests once again, Simon began exhibiting his works in Paris salons such as the Société Nouvelle des Beaux-Arts. During the interwar years, Simon honed his sculptural technique and created a distinct style of “animalistic sculptures”; he often entered sculptures of elephants, gazelle, rabbits, and other mammals into expositions in Paris. Upon the eve of the Second World War, Simon was re-mobilized, this time in a reserve defense in Paris, where he witnessed horrifying brutalities and sought comfort and respite in the beauty and animal life of the Jardin des Plantes.

Thereafter, Simon exhibited continuously in Paris Salons and searched for new ways to depict animals in sculpture. He died in Gassin in 1979.

Museum Collections:
Centre national des arts plastiques, Paris
French Embassy, London
Ministry of Commerce, Paris
Ministry of Culture and Communication, Paris
Ministry of the Economy, Finance, and Industry, Paris
Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Paris
Musée Charente-Maritime, La Rochelle
Musée des Beaux-Arts de La Rochelle, La Rochelle
Netherlands Institute for Art History, The Hague
Presidential Residence, Rambouillet

Mark Murray Fine Paintings is a New York gallery specializing in buying and selling 19th century and early 20th century artwork. 

Please contact us if you are interested in selling your Paul Simon sculptures or other artwork from the 19th century and early 20th century.