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    Sale 1987

    Important European Furniture, Works of Art, Ceramics, Carpets, And Glass

    20 May 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 118

    A MEISSEN COMMEDIA DEL'ARTE FIGURE OF HARLEQUIN AS A MUSICIAN

    THE PORCELAIN CIRCA 1748, BLUE CROSSED SWORDS MARK, MODELED BY J.J. KÄNDLER, THE DECORATION 19TH CENTURY

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    A MEISSEN COMMEDIA DEL'ARTE FIGURE OF HARLEQUIN AS A MUSICIAN
    The porcelain circa 1748, blue crossed swords mark, modeled by J.J. Kändler, the decoration 19th century
    Harlequin wearing typical ruffled collar with quartered decoration on his bow-tied jacket and trousers, his cloak slung over his left shoulder, a brimmed hat perched on the side of his head at a jaunty angle, posed as a strolling mandolin player
    6½ in. (16.5 cm.) high


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    The present model usually represents the Commedia de;'Arte character Mezzetin. However, with his ruff collar and quartered decoration on his costume, the present musician cannot represent any character other than Harlequin. Indeed, the outer right leg of his trousers is painted with scattered playing cards, the right side of his jacket with a chequerboard or lozenges, decoration traditionally associated with Harlequin.

    The dating of the unique decoration on the present figure has been confirmed through qualitative x-ray fluorescence done on the enamels in the conservation science laboratory at Winterthur under the direction of Dr. Jennifer Mass. Zinc as an element used in blue and yellow indicates a 19th century formula for these colors, as does the presence of cobalt in the black. Given the two deep firing cracks at the back of his cloak, it is likely that the present figure remained at the factory in the white only to be sold off and/or decorated in the 19th century.

    Pre-Lot Text

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