A NORTHERN-ITALIAN TEN LIGHT CLEAR AND POLYCHROME GLASS ‘CIOCCIA’ CHANDELIER IN THE MANNER OF GIUSEPPE BRIATI, VENICE,
MID 19TH CENTURY

The skilful art of glass blowing has long been ubiquitous with Venice, and the nearby island of Murano. Unlike its fellow glass and crystal manufacturer Bohemia, Venetian glass was set apart by the intricate production of melting and moulding its glass, as opposed to cutting. This malleability of the glass allowed for more delicacy, resulting in artistry of leaves, fruits, and flowers enhanced by the richness of coloured glass, juxtaposing the heavy faceted crystal chandeliers produced by Bohemia at this time.  These types of chandeliers were named ‘cioccia’ chandeliers and were popularized by Giuseppe Briati and later became an iconic Venetian design. ‘Cioccia’ translates to ‘bouquet of flowers’ in Italian.

This Chandelier showcases the complexity of the glass blower’s technique, principally evident in the delicate flowers and chain link adornments, which were all painstakingly individually crafted.

AN IMPRESSIVE NEO-CLASSICAL PATINATED BRONZE SCULPTURE, ‘GLORIA VICTIS’ BY FERNINAND BARBEDIENNE & MARIUS JEAN ANTONIN MERCIE, CIRCA 1875.

This large finely cast bronze titled ‘Gloria Victis’, depicts a dramatic allegory of Fame carrying a fallen soldier in her arms. The bronze figure was a collaboration of two celebrated artists of 19th Century France, bronzier Ferdinand Barbdeienne, and sculptor Marius-Jean-Antonin Mercie.

Although bronze was very expensive and time consuming to produce, it was hugely desirable and was commonly used in post-revolutionary France for war-related commemorations. In fact, this sculpture was designed by Mercie to commemorate the Franco-Prussian war, where France was defeated, personified by the defeated solider in Fame’s arms. Mercie’s sculpture was awarded a medal of honour when exhibited at the Paris Salon in 1874.      

A RARE FRENCH EMPIRE DOUBLE FUSEE ORMOLU MOUNTED MARBLE MANTEL CLOCK, 19TH CENTURY

Crafted from white Carrara marble and lushly adorned with ormolu mounted bronze applique, this rare clock is a wonderful example of the post-revolutionary French Empire period.  Fuelled by the luxuriance of the royal court of Louis XVI and the classical motifs of the ancient world,  the French empire’s tastes were nostalgic of the Ancien Régime. Napoleon coveted classical motifs and re-appropriated them as symbols of his empire, such as the laurels and depiction of the god Hermes seen in this clock, and they became iconic markers of the period.

CHIARA CURCIO / Head of Decorative Arts