Ambroise Louis Garneray (1783-1857) was the eldest son of Jean-François Garneray, the court painter and pupil of Jacques-Louis David. He is recorded as a French mariner, painter and writer and from the age of thirteen he lead a mariner's life, taking part in various campaigns in the Indian ocean under the Sercey division. In 1799 he was promoted to quartermaster and also acted as 'premier peintre de bord' on the Preneuse. In 1806, during a raid, he was captured by the British and spent eight years imprisoned at Portsmouth. Released in 1814, Garneray returned to France and his work was exhibited at the Paris Salon in 1815. In 1817 he was appointed painter to the Duke d'Angoulême and the first official painter to the Navy. In the 1830s he was named director of the Rouen Museum and subsequently invited by Alexandre Brongniart, at the Sèvres manufactory, to execute maritime paintings on porcelain.
The 'Service des Pêches' dates from 1839 to 1852 and all of the pieces are painted by Garneray based on his own renderings of different fishing scenes from various parts of the world. Portions of the service were presented to the Louvre for exhibition in 1840 and again in 1842. The service was subsequently divided between l'hippodrome de Dieppe, le comité des Courses d'Avranches, le ministère de la Marine, Baron Taylor, and the Sèvres Museum. Currently Sèvres retains four examples, three of which are from this division. Another two examples are kept at the Louvre. See Marie-Noëlle Pinot de Villechenon, Sèvres, Porcelain from the Sèvres Museum 1740 to the Present Day, London, 1997, p. 82, no. 84c for an example in the Sèvres Museum (MNC 7,608) painted with sardine fishermen, and Samuel Wittwer et al., Raffinesse & Eleganz, Königliche Porzellane des frühen 19. Jahrhunderts aus der Twinight Collection New York, Munich, 2007, pp. 416-417, cat. nos. 142a,b for two more plates from the service.
Two plates from the 'Service des Pêches' were sold by Christie's in Paris on 17 December 2003, lots 129 and 131, a third was sold by Christie's in New York on 21 October 2008, lot 100, and a further pair were sold in these Rooms on 3 June 2014, lot 60.