An important and large Sèvres porcelain plaque: The Mystic Marriage of St. Catherine <BR />painted by Abraham Constantin (Swiss, 1785-1851), after the painting by Correggio (Italian, 1489-1540)<BR />circa 1819
Lot 4423
An important and large Sèvres porcelain plaque: The Mystic Marriage of St. Catherine
painted by Abraham Constantin (Swiss, 1785-1851), after the painting by Correggio (Italian, 1489-1540)
dated 1819
Sold for US$ 152,500 inc. premium

Lot Details
An important and large Sèvres porcelain plaque: The Mystic Marriage of St. Catherine <BR />painted by Abraham Constantin (Swiss, 1785-1851), after the painting by Correggio (Italian, 1489-1540)<BR />circa 1819 A Sèvres porcelain plaque: Le Mariage de St. Catherine A Sèvres porcelain plaque: Le Mariage de St. Catherine A Sèvres porcelain plaque: Le Mariage de St. Catherine
An important and large Sèvres porcelain plaque: The Mystic Marriage of St. Catherine
painted by Abraham Constantin (Swiss, 1785-1851), after the painting by Correggio (Italian, 1489-1540)
dated 1819
Depicting the infant Christ seated on his mother's lap presenting a ring to the kneeling Catherine, St. Sebastian gazes upon the scene from behind, signed lower right A. Constantin 1819, painted to reverse Le Mariage de S.te Catherine par A. Constantin pour le Manufre Royale de Sèvres 1819, blue interlaced Ls surmounted by a coronet, incised P et D 8 bre 1819, within a malachite inlaid gilt bronze frame.
sight dimensions 22 1/2 x 21 1/2in (57 x 55cm); dimensions of panel 23 3/4 x 21 7/8in (60.5 x 55.5cm); dimensions of frame 25 1/2 x 24 3/4in (65 x 63cm)

Footnotes

  • Born in Geneva, Abraham Constantin was introduced early in life to the art of enamel painting on clock and watch dials. He arrived in Paris in 1807, where he was a protégé of the painter François Gérard. Presented to Empress Eugénie, he became the portraitist to the imperial family for paintings on enamel. He began painting on porcelain after the failure of Napoleon's campaign in Russia, entering the Manufacture de Sèvres in 1813. During his time at Sèvres, Constantin was enlisted in the project of copying Old Master's paintings onto porcelain in an attempt to better preserve for future generations the works of art on unstable and delicate canvases. To assist in this project, in 1817, the director of the Musée Royal agreed to lend such works to Sèvres, enabling the Manufactory painters to copy the works while within the walls of the factory.

    In 1820, several of the finished examples of these plaques were exhibited in the Sèvres Manufactory's annual exhibition which displayed a selection of the most refined and exclusive works of the previous year. The king regularly purchased pieces amongst these examples for himself or for gifts.

    The above offered plaque appears to have had a place in the 1820 exhibition in the Musée Royal. In the records of the contents of the exhibit, entitled Notice sur quelques-unes des pièces qui entrent dans l'exposition des porcelaines de la Manufacture Royale de Sèvres, faite au Musée Royal, le 1er janvier 1820 entry number 12 appears as:
    "12. Un tableau sur plaque rectangulaire de porcelaine
    Hauteur 57 cent.
    Largeur 55 cent.
    Copie du célèbre tableau du Corrège, dit le Mariage de sainte Catherine.
    Cette copie a été faite au Musée Royal, d'après le tableau original, par M. Constantin."
    (12. A painting on a rectangular porcelain plaque ; height 57cm width 55cm ; copy of the famous painting by Correggio, called Le Mariage de sainte Catherine. This copy was made from the original painting in the Musée Royal, by Mr Constantin.)
    Beside the entry, the plaque was listed for sale at 12,000 francs.

    The original painting entitled "The Mystic Marriage of St. Catherine" by Correggio, dated 1526-1527, has been in the French royal collection since the time of Louis XIV and is still in the Louvre today.

    See Tamara Préaud, The Sèvres Porcelain Manufactory: Alexandre Brongniart and the Triumph of Art and Industry, 1800-1847, Published for The Bard Graduate Center for Studies in the Decorative Arts, New York by Yale University Press, New Haven, 1997.
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