• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 12187

    Opulence

    10 October 2016, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 39

    A MASSIVE FRENCH ORMOLU SURTOUT-DE-TABLE

    IN THE MANNER OF PIERRE-PHILIPPE THOMIRE, LATE 19TH CENTURY, LATE 19TH CENTURY

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    A MASSIVE FRENCH ORMOLU SURTOUT-DE-TABLE
    IN THE MANNER OF PIERRE-PHILIPPE THOMIRE, LATE 19TH CENTURY, LATE 19TH CENTURY
    In five sections with rounded ends and mirrored plates, the pierced scrolling foliate gallery cast with trophies issuing garlands held by maidens
    6 ½ in. (16.5 cm.) high, 23 ½ in. (59.7 cm.) wide, 128 in. (325.1 cm.) long


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    The decoration for this palatial surtout- de-table, and its companion components in the preceding lot, is derived from a design by Pierre-Philippe Thomire (1751-1843) of circa 1820 with similar feasting figures celebrating the glory of Bacchus, an appropriate subject for such a sumptuous dining room centerpiece (illustrated H. Ottomeyer and P. Pröschel, Vergoldete Bronzen, 1986, vol. I, p. 388, no. 5.16.15). Another related surtout also by Thomire made for Napoleon's brother Prince Lucien is at the Musée Marmottan, Paris (illustrated in M. Deschamps, Empire, 1994, p. 169). Pierre-Philippe Thomire, the most celebrated bronzier-ciseleur of the Empire period, was born into a family of ciseleurs. He worked initially for the renowned bronziers Pierre Gouthière (1732-1813) and Jean-Louis Prieur (d. circa 1785), ciseleur-doreur du roi, and quickly established a reputation for finely chased gilt-bronzes.