An important Meissen circular stand circa 1725-30
Lot 10
An important Meissen circular stand circa 1725-30
£30,000 - 40,000
US$ 47,000 - 63,000

Lot Details
An important Meissen circular stand
circa 1725-30
Superbly painted in enamels and Böttger lustre with a scene depicting a chinoiserie figure flanked by indianische Blumen and rockwork and with a fence in the foreground, enclosed by iron-red circles and a broad band of gilt foliate scrollwork, the rim with four chinoiserie scenes within gilt and Böttger lustre cartouches edged with iron-red foliate scrollwork and divided by gilt foliate scrollwork, gilt-edged rim, the reverse with two trailing branches of indianische Blumen and two butterflies, 22cm diam., crossed swords mark in underglaze-blue, 'HO' monogram in iron-red

Footnotes

  • Provenance:
    Acquired in 1986

    Literature:
    Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 49;
    Lübke 2008, ills. 8 and 8a, pp. 10-16;
    Rudi 2010, no. 104a

    Exhibited:
    Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

    This circular stand, together with another closely similar stand from the Hoffmeister Collection (Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 50; sold in these Rooms, 25 November 2009, lot 9), are notable not only for the exceptional quality of the chinoiserie painting, but also for the intriguing 'HO' monogram painted in iron-red on the reverse of each piece above the crossed swords. See Dieter Hoffmeister's discussion of the pieces (Hoffmeister 1999, I, pp. 96-97), including the theory first advanced by Dr. Ingelore Menzhausen, that the monogram could be read 'JCHO' for the painter, Johann Christoph Horn, who was active at the manufactory from 1720. The acquisition of this and the similar stand with the same mark led to the discovery of the matching tureens and covers, both marked with the same monogram. One, from the collection of the 19th-century Dresden collector, Carl Spitzner, is in the Dresden porcelain collection in the Zwinger (Inv. nr. PE 1504, illustrated by Pietsch 1996, no. 134, and Lübke 2008, ill. 9), and the other is in the Giuseppe Gianetti Collection in Saronno, which was formed in the 1930s and 1940s (Bruni / Molfino 1994, no. 59). In August 1996, the present lot was examined together with the tureen and cover in the Dresden porcelain collection (Hoffmeister 1999, I, p. 97) and was found to closely correspond.

    Diethard Lübke has discussed the tureens and stands in detail (see Literature), including the monogram. He argues (pp. 10-16) against the idea that HO is a painter's signature, not least because several hands including the gilder's are involved, and suggests that the monogram signifies that the tureens and their stands were prizes awarded during the Dresden carnival season. If the monogram is read not as 'H' and 'O', but as representing the zodiac sign of Pisces and the sun, respectively, the 'monogram' can be seen as emblematic of the sun in the constellation of Pisces, that is between 20-21 February and the 20th March, which is when the Dresden carnival took place. In this reading, the sun can also stand for Augustus the Strong, presumably the donor of the prize. Lübke also cites the example of Vienna, where prizes such as porcelain tureens and stands were regularly awarded in shooting contests, and were considered worthy of the Empress herself.
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