The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Vase 'pot pourri gondole' and vase 'a tête d'éléphant' of the first size
  • Garniture of Three Vases
  • Vase 'pot pourri gondole' and vase 'a tête d'éléphant' of the first size
  • Manufacture de Sèvres
  • Attributed to Jean-Claude Chambellan Duplessis, the Elder (1695 - 1774), Designer
    Probably Charles-Nicolas Dodin (1734 - 1803), Painter
  • Sèvres, France
  • 1758
  • Soft-paste porcelain, painted and gilded
  • C248, Object size: 38.1 x 36.1 cm
    C249, Object size: 39.3 x 28.5 cm
    C250, Object size: 38.8 x 28.7 cm
  • Factory mark: Interlaced Ls
    Factory mark: Interlaced Ls and 'E' the date letter for 1758
    Label: '280' Printed
    Inscription: '23' In red wax
  • C248-50
  • Back State Room
Commentary
History
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • This exquisite garniture consists of two elaborate vases with elephants’ heads supporting candleholders (for a detailed discussion of the model see C246-7) and a boat-shaped pot-pourri vase. It is the second in of three ship-shaped models chief-designer Jean-Claude Duplessis père (op. 1745/1748-1774), created during the 1750s (see C225 and C256 for the other models).
    The piercings on the neck were required for the perfume to permeate and are a complex decorative pattern of entwining scrolls, while the cover is decorated with naturalistically sculpted and painted flowers, crowned by a small bouquet forming the knop. Decorated with a green ground, the pairs of cherubs on both sides, were possibly executed by Charles-Nicolas Dodin (op. 1754-1802/3 and inspired by works of Boucher).
    The inventories of Madame de Pompadour’s apartments at Versailles and the Hôtel de Pompadour list three vases whose description closely matches the garniture in the Wallace Collection. Louis XV’s mistress might have bought this set in 1759 and then displayed the vases in different houses.