From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
René-Michel Slodtz or Michelangelo and in France, Michel-Ange Slodtz (Paris 1705 - 1764) was a French sculptor working in a Rococo style, and active mainly in Rome and Paris, and for the Menus-Plaisirs du Roi.
He passed seventeen years at Rome, where he was chosen to execute a statue of St Bruno (1744) for a niche in the nave of St Peter's. The statue captures the saint's refusal of the bishop's mitre and staff when offered by a cherub, while his right hand rests on a skull, reminding him of his mortality. The simplicity of the monk's robes and the shaved head add classical "gravitas" to the baroque drama. He was also the sculptor of the tomb of Marquis Capponi in San Giovanni dei Fiorentini.Other works of his are to be seen in the Roman churches of San Luigi dei Francesi and Santa Maria della Scala.
After his return to France in 1747, Slodtz, in conjunction with his brothers, Antoine-Sebastien and Paul, produced many decorative works in the churches of Paris, and, though much has been destroyed, his most considerable achievement—the tomb of Languet de Gergy in St Sulpice (commissioned in 1750)--still exists.
Slodtz was, like his brothers, a member of the Académie royale de peinture et de sculpture. Many particulars of his life are preserved by Charles-Nicolas Cochin, in a memoir and also in a letter to the Gazette littéraire, which was reproduced by Castilhon in the Necrologe of 1766.
Slodtz's father, Sébastien Slodtz (1615–1726), was also a sculptor, born at Antwerp; he became a pupil of François Girardon and worked mostly under him at Versailles and the Tuileries. His chief works were Hannibal in the Jardin des Tuileries, a statue of St Ambrose in the Invalides, and a bas-relief Saint Louis sending missionaries to India.
French artist and sculptor, Charles François Hutin, was a pupil of Slodtz in Rome.