Fine French Ferdinand Barbedienne Brass Bronze Figural Inkwell, Paris C. 1860-80 For Sale
Fine French Figural Inkwell Cast of Roman Emperor Lucius Verus by Ferdinand Barbedienne (b. 1810-1892)
Solid Brass, Foundry Mark en Verso "Reduction Mecanique A. Collas", Paris c. 1860-80
Item #120008WTI27This delightful masterpiece is cast with utmost care and is of unmatched quality. Featuring a bust of Roman Emperor Lucius Verus over a well formed plinth base, both right and left sides with reduced castings of his head looking at theinkwells. The detail inhis bust is simply stunning, his sharp and intense featuresdepict a hard and disciplined man, the curls of his hair flowing intothe beard he is known by. The surface is shiny oxidized and has not been polished in quite some time, allowing the natural patina ofaged brass to come through, a light green verdigris oxidization visible incorners and edges. The bust is flanked by two round ink wells covered with fine Rococo motifs, opening to reveal on the left side a small white porcelain ink bowl, on the right side an empty chassis as the bowl is missing. In front of both wells is the pen rest, upon which your fine pen will reside. The entire stand rests over lion paw feet. The back of the stand is impressed "F. Barbedienne", and the back of the bust is impressed "Reduction Mecanique A Collas Revete" .
This is a stunning work of art to complete your large antique desk or library table. It will not only compliment such decor, but will enhance it and complete it. With large broad dimensions, just over 16" wide, this is a true statement piece and strikepoint. Cast with the quality Barbedienne is renowned for, this is a piece you will treasure in your home for a lifetime.
Measurements: 16 1/8" long x 6 13/16" deep x 9 1/2" high
Wear inside tray,spots ofverdigris oxidization to the brass, some patina wear and polish build up. Missing one porcelainink cup;the other porcelain ink cup is originalwith some chips around the rim. One foot missingone of it's threescrews on the underside. Please review images in the slideshow for a detailed overview of condition.
The son of a farmer, he was apprenticed in 1822 to a Parisian papermaker. By 1834 Barbedienne was a successful wallpaper manufacturer; his original intention had been to reproduce ‘masterpieces from Antiquity and the Renaissance’. In 1838 he changed his profession, becoming a founder, and went into partnership with Achille Collas (1795–1859), who had invented a method for making reductions of sculpture. The firm, called Collas & Barbedienne, specialized in reproductions of antique and modern sculpture and eventually employed about 300 artists and workers, who produced as many as 1,200 subjects, including the work of Michelangelo, Luca della Robbia and Antoine-Louis Barye, as well as making busts of historical notables (e.g. Voltaire and Benjamin Franklin). By 1850 the firm was also producing a wide range of decorative objects—chandeliers, vases and furniture—in a variety of revival styles (e.g. Néo-Grec, Gothic and Louis XVI). Between 1850 and 1854 the firm provided furnishings in the Renaissance Revival style for the Hôtel de Ville, Paris. From 1851 the firm, by then known as Barbedienne, received numerous medals at the international exhibitions, including medals in three different classes at the International Exhibition of 1862 in London. Barbedienne’s work in enamel, which was at the forefront of the revival of enamelwork in France in the 19th century, was shown for the first time at this exhibition. In 1886 he was awarded the Jean Goujon Gold Medal by the Société d’Encouragement pour l’Industrie Nationale. The business was carried on by Barbedienne’s nephew after his death.
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