Pair of Antique style bas-reliefs terracotta Wedgwood style painted, 1900
Pair of terracotta bas reliefs painted in Wedgwood style figuring two white antique vestals on a light blue background. One is viewed from the back, in contrapposto position, holding on her hands a circular jar. The other one is front seen, a hand on her chest and the other one designating something off the frame. She is also in contrapposto and the water jar has water flowing to her feet. They are both hair-dressed and clothes dressed like in Antiquity with himation and are raised thanks to little pedestals.
Natural wood frame and gilt brass edges with a motif of water leaves frieze.
Dated « August 1900 » at the back of one of the terracotta.
Revival of the naiads by Pierre Goujon on the Fontaine des Innocents in Paris.
Dimensions : H 51 x W 21 x D 5 cm.
Reference : LS3585321
Wedgwood manufacture created by Josiah Wedgwood (1730-1795) grew during the 18th century thanks to its jasper innovative production (hard ceramic tinted with colourful oxides and decorated with white low-reliefs) and its refined aesthetic in the trendy antique style of this period, the « neo-Greek » style. The most characteristic artworks of this English manufacture were its faience with green enamelled vine leaves décor, its cream faience said « faience à la Reine », its Etruscan imitations or even its biscuit plates with a white low-relief decor on a colourful background.
The blue background plates did the international reputation of the manufacture. Thus, cabinetmakers as Weisweiler, inlayed Wedgwood plates in some of their furniture, that gave to them a Pompeian style in the taste of the era.
The Fontaine des Innocents was built in 1548 by the architect Pierre Lescot on the request of the king Henry IV, who wanted to mark his entrance in Paris in 1549. Situated in Paris centre, place Joachim du Bellay, in the 1st arrondissement, it knew many changes and moves, all along its history. Actually quadrangular shaped, the fountain was put on a high substructure and was drilled of four arcades. Every face was topped by a triangular pediment and the monument was crowned by a dome. Its bas-reliefs represent naiads, realized by Jean Goujon and then completed by Augustin Pajou in 1788, during the fountain’s move on the place of the Innocent’s market, ancient place of the Innocents’ cemetery.
Goujon bas-reliefs’ are truly chef-d’œuvre of the French Renaissance thanks to their grace, their flexibility and their fluidity. Indeed, Goujon was inspire by hellenistic sculpture in the treatment of fabrics that are transparent, wet and light in order to showcase the nymphs’ shapes.
Our bas-reliefs exactly pick up the shape of the bas-reliefs of the north facade by Pierre Goujon.
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