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| Large Empire bronze doré clock in the form of a temple, attributed to Denière et Matelin resting on a matched Empire acajou pedestal signed Jacob Frères rue Meslée. The pitched shingled roof is decorated with a raised molding, acroteria at the corners and a sun ray crowned Apollo mask at the peaks. Below the roof, there is a frieze of facing winged lions. The corners are covered by large winged caryatid female figures holding swags composed of fruits and leafage. The clock faces are above the swags on the long sides and are framed with the signs of the zodiac; the short sides are centered on one side with the emblem for “Prudence”, a mirror and snake, and an emblem for sovereign power La Main de Justice with an all-seeing eye, on the other. A band below the figures is decorated at the corners with split figures of horned winged lions with sea-creature tails. The plain base, with slightly incurvated sides has straight chamfers.
This beautifully chased ormoulu clock case is decorated identically on the back and front, leading to the assumption that it was probably designed for a double movement. Original gilding. [Replaced movement. Some sun rays missing or replaced.]
Exhibited: The Frick Collection: French Clocks in North American Collections; 11/02/82 – 1/30/83. Nº 96
Ex Collection: Valeria Knapp Langeloth Bonham (Parke-Bernet Galleries; New York, 1954. Lot 220.)
See lot 696 of the René Fribourg Collection (Sotheby’s London, 10/17/63) for a jardinière with identical mounts. A clock by the same bronze maker was recently sold in Switzerland, where it was attributed to the bronzier, Denière. Jean-François Denière (1774-1847) with his partner Jean-François Matelin were the owners of Denière et Matelin, among the most famous bronze makers in early 19th century France.
The Empire acajou stand has chamfered corners with tapering acajou caryatids each with a fine burnished and matte ormoulu female head, a band and ormoulu feet. One face of the pedestal is mounted with a bronze doré female figure holding a wreath aloft in one hand and a leaf in the other while balanced on a burnished ball.
|Height (ins.): 71.25 Length/Width (ins.): 17 Depth (ins.): 14.75|
|Origin: France, early 19th century Period: Empire|