Offered by Franck Baptiste Paris
16th to 19th century furniture and works of art
Rare and important portico clock in black marble and white Carrara marble.
The base on the terrace rests on eight tops, it is decorated with openwork friezes in finely guilloché bronze.
Above, on two small counter-plinths surrounded by terminals linked by chains, two black marble pagodas stand.
They are adorned with decreasing guilloché bronze rings enriched with small hanging bells.
The top is covered by a roof in the form of an umbrella or drop thin chains connecting the bases.
Between the two pagodas, the circular case comprising the movement is supported by a palanquin and suspended by chains stretched between the two towers.
Above, on a black marble plinth, stands a Chinese musician wearing a traditional court costume from the time of Emperor Quianlong; he holds in his hand a musical instrument called "Chinese hat" *.
The white enamelled dial with Arabic numerals is signed "Bifson à Paris" *, it indicates the hours and minutes by two openwork bronze hands while a blued steel hand indicates the days of the month.
The original silk-thread suspension movement is also signed on the backplate.
The springs dated 1787 and signed "Richard" *.
Perfect working order, revised by our watchmaker.
Original mercury gilding with double amate and shiny patinas.
Very good state of conservation.
Parisian work from the Louis XVI period around 1790.
Height: 60 cm; Width: 48 cm
* Pierre Bifton is a Parisian watchmaker received master by masterpiece in 1744.
* Etienne-Claude Richard is a spring manufacturer, he was established rue de la Huchette in Paris between 1754 and 1772.
Our opinion :
Our pendulum is an extremely rare variant of the famous portico pendulum "à la Minerva", it perfectly represents the Chinese taste in fashion under the old regime but just like it, it also symbolizes war, but in an oriental version.
Indeed the soldier perched at the top of our pendulum flies the “Chinese flag” this musical instrument with which one struck the ground in the military parades.
The din of bells and gongs was meant to terrify the opponent ...
Very few copies of this model have reached us, and this for several reasons, first their production cost must be very high, then the fragility and the large amount of elements present probably did not play in their favor. and finally crucial point, they were produced on the eve of the revolution as indicated by the date engraved on the springs of our movement.
It is one of the very last bucolic representations of oriental taste before terror engulfed the old world for good.
It is funny to compare our pagodas with that of the Chateau de Chanteloup which probably inspired many Parisian artisans.
The delicacy achieved and the lightness of the design despite a large amount of detail perfectly represent the excellence achieved by the Parisian workshops at the end of the reign of Louis XVI.
9 500 €