A LOUIS XV ORMOLU MANTEL CLOCK
A LOUIS XV ORMOLU MANTEL CLOCK

CIRCA 1745-1749, THE CASE ATTRIBUTED TO SAINT GERMAIN, THE DIAL SIGNED 'GILLE L'AINE A PARIS'

Details
A LOUIS XV ORMOLU MANTEL CLOCK
CIRCA 1745-1749, THE CASE ATTRIBUTED TO SAINT GERMAIN, THE DIAL SIGNED 'GILLE L'AINE A PARIS'
The circular glazed enamelled dial with Roman and Arabic chapters and pierced foliate engraved hands the dial surmounted by a seated figure of an Indian with plumed headdress and quiver of arrows holding a parasol, seated upon a hipped pagoda roof with rockwork base, the sides with trailing berried foliage, the circular drum supported by two kneeling chinoiserie figures, on a naturalistic rockwork base with balustrading, foliage and brickwork and on rocaille feet, the mounts stamped with the C couronné poinçon
23¾ in. (60 cm.) high, 19¾ in. (50 cm.) wide, 7 in. (18 cm.) deep
Literature
Segoura, ex. cat., Paris, 1997, p.32-33.

Lot Essay

The C-couronné poinçon was a tax mark employed between March 1745 and February 1749 on any alloy containing copper.

Jean-Joseph de Saint-Germain, maître fondeur in 1748.
Pierre II Gille l'ainé, maître horloger in 1746.

With its central drum case supported by two kneeling chinoiserie figures and surmounted by a putto wearing an ostrich-plumed crown, this clock is emblematic of Asia (E. Maser and C. Ripa, Baroque and Rococo Pictorial Imagery, New York, 1971, cat. no. 103).

Jean-Joseph de Saint-Germain produced a number of ormolu clock-cases of this form with small differences, and the present example is attributed to him based on the other signed examples. This includes a clock in the Metropolitan Museum of Art (F.J.B. Watson, The Wrightsman Collection, New York, 1966, vol. II, cat. no. 183), another from the collection of Otto Kahn, sold Christie's, Monaco, 20 June 1994, lot 112, and a further example sold first from the Alexander Collection, Christie's New York, 30 April 1999, lot 155, and subsequently sold from Le Pavillon Chougny, Christie's, London, 9 December 2004, lot 385. A further example signed by Gille l'Ainé sold Christie's London, 7 June 2005, lot 329

Pierre II Gille, son of the maître horloger Pierre François Gille, worked with his father before establishing his own workshop. Elected maître in 1746, he produced clocks, always of excellent quality, which were set in cases supplied by Paris' leading fondeurs and bronzier such as Osmond, Vion and Saint-Germain.

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