My uncle, Frederic Levesque, spent most of his life at Miserai until his passing in 2010. He was a man who loved his home and got such enjoyment and inspiration from his surroundings. His love for the forest and nature in particular stands out in his work. Constantly smiling, telling jokes and singing, he was truly a joy to be around.
Known for his imaginative, Gothic fairy tale sculptures, Frederic first exhibited at the Grand Palais in 1987. A graduate of the highly regarded école Des Beaux-Arts in Paris, whose esteemed graduates include Degas, Delacroix, Fragonard, Ingres, Monet, Moreau, Renoir, Seurat, and Sisley, he went on to become famous worldwide for his work as an illustrator and avant-garde sculptor.
In the sculpture below, one can see how Frederic was inspired by his surroundings by looking at his take on the pesky moles that occasionally decide to make Miserai’s lawn their home!
Frederic’s creations can be visited in the barn up on the mezzanine at Miserai:
His work showed his love for his native region of Normandy, but he also brought in worldwide themes, making his work universal. He brought in themes from all over art history — from the Middle Ages and 18th-century French fairy tales to French film spoofs. He also created parodies of various works of motion picture art, including Georges Melies’ A trip to the Moon (1902) and W. Murnau’s Nosferatu (1922). Frederic contributed more than 50 truly unique works of art to Design Toscano. From a submarine engulfed by a giant squid and an actual smoke-breathing dragon called Bessemer to an alligator lunching on his caretaker.
The hunt room at Miserai is filled with his art – from the hand carved fireplace to the hunting scene which adorns the rooms walls.
His designs were done in a style that was truly Frederic: proportionally exaggerated and comically robust. He was truly one of a kind.
You can see more of his creations on his website: http://miserai.com/fred/index.html