• 19th Century Furniture, Sculpt auction at Christies

    Sale 2210

    19th Century Furniture, Sculpture, Works of Art & Ceramics

    20 October 2009, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 260

    A MONUMENTAL MINTON MAJOLICA SHELL-FORM CISTERN, 'FLOWER-BEARERS'

    CIRCA 1870

    Price Realised  

    A MONUMENTAL MINTON MAJOLICA SHELL-FORM CISTERN, 'FLOWER-BEARERS'
    Circa 1870
    Modeled as a massive scallop shell flanked by mermaid supports, their hair applied with water-lilies and spilling into the interior of the cistern, all supported by two smaller shells among sea grasses, on an oval base splashed in shades of mottled blue
    40 in. (101.6 cm.) wide


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    This design was chosen by Minton to represent their majolica at several important exhibitions in the late 19th century, including South Kensington (1871), Vienna (1873), Philadelphia (1876) and at the Imperial Institute in London in 1894. There are very few known extant examples, and it is therefore likely that this piece was displayed in one of these exhibitions. For a line drawing of the model in The Masterpieces of the Centennial International Exhibition, see Professor W. Smith, 1876, p. 182. Also see the drawing cited in N. Dawes, Majolica, New York, 1990, p. 86, fig. 147; and the example illustrated by J. Jones, Minton: The First Two Hundred Years of Design & Production, Shrewsbury, 1993, p. 155. For a smaller version of the model, see Christie's, London, 30 May 2002, lot 47 and 13 May 2008, lot 306.