In 1916, a talented sculptor is found dead in his apartment in Paris. In spite of his success as an artist, various financial hardships and a deep depression led him to commit suicide by gas inhalation. He was only 31 years old. He was Ettore Bugatti's - the famous automobile constructor - younger brother and he was the one who created the famous elephant sculpture on top of the unmistakable radiator in each of his models. His family fondly nicknamed him Pempa.
Rembrandt Bugatti was, without a doubt, the most gifted in a family with a strong artistic spirit and culture. Ettore, who was enrolled at Brera Academy in Milan, droped-out upon realizing his brother was so much more talented then him. He dedicated himself to automobiles instead, and it was a very sensible choice. Rembrandt, on the other hand, continued his artistic career and, from an early age, became a renown sculptor. He was part of a circle of some of the most influential and famous vanguard artists, such as André Derain, Amedeo Modigliani, Maurice de Vlaminck, Max Jacob and Pablo Picasso. His sculptures were in the frontline of modern art of the time.
His interest in animals manifested itself early on. During the time he lived in Belgium, between 1907 and 1914, he made the Antwerp Zoo his second home, spending most of his time there, watching and drawing the wild animals that were kept in captivity. Rembrant had always shown signs of phychologic distress, especially when in the face of human contact. He was shy, insecure and lonely; it's no wonder animals were his only company. But that didn't stop his success and social recognition. He put together several exhibitions, won various artistic awards and France even promotes him to the rank of Chevalier of Legion of Honour.
Curiously enough, his relationship with his brother wasn't very intense. They rarely saw each other, even though they lived in the same city, and wrote to each other even less. When they did, Rembrandt usually took the first step, especially when he needed money. When he died, though, Ettore signed himself his last work, a statue of a lioness crushing a snake, with the phrase "My brother's last work of art - Paris, January 8th, 1916". Later, in 1928, he placed his brother's elephant on the radiator of his Type 41, the Royale, the most beautiful car of all time.