• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 2182

    Important 20th Century Decorative Art and Design

    2 June 2009, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 34

    MARCEL (BLOCH) DASSAULT (1892-1986)

    A WALNUT WIND TUNNEL MODEL OF AN MB 175, CIRCA 1939

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    MARCEL (BLOCH) DASSAULT (1892-1986)
    A Walnut Wind Tunnel Model of an MB 175, circa 1939
    metal details and painted decal
    70½ in. (179 cm.) wide, 48 in. (122 cm.) long
    marked MB175


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    Marcel Bloch (1892-1986) was a French aircraft industrialist who designed planes during World War I and in 1930 founded the Société des Avions Marcel Bloch. His company produced military and civilian planes throughout the 1930s and, by 1939, manufactured planes for the French air force until the Vichy government took over his factories in 1940. Bloch refused to collaborate with the Germans and was sent to Buchenwald concentration camp during the war years. After the war, he changed his last name to Dassault and continued his work in aeronautics.

    The MB 175, with a larger payload than the MB 174, was a World War II bomber that flew for the French, and later, the German air forces. This wind tunnel model, constructed of glued walnut pieces, probably dates to around 1939, when improvements were made to the slightly earlier MB 174.