The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Probably vase 'ferré' of the first size and vase 'ferré' of the second size
  • Garniture of Three Vases and Covers
  • Probably vase 'ferré' of the first size and vase 'ferré' of the second size
  • Manufacture de Sèvres
  • Possibly Étienne Maurice Falconet (1716 - 1791), Designer
  • Sèvres, France
  • c. 1779 (vase and cover)
  • Soft-paste porcelain, painted and gilded
  • C264, Object size: 42.4 x 19.2 cm
    C265, Object size: 35.1 x 15.5 cm
    C266, Object size: 35.3 x 16 cm
  • Incised mark: A square
    Incised mark: 'Li'
    Label: 'X' and '476'
    Label: 'X'
    Label: '44'
    Label: 'X' and '475'
    Label: '43'
    Label: '477'
  • C264-6
  • Study
Commentary
History
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Vases were often produced as matchingly decorated garnitures, which would make for a lavish mantlepiece decoration.This one has three 'vases ferré', literally translating as ‘iron-shod’ and probably named after the sculpted ropes, clamps, and nails.

    Their turquoise blue 'bleu céleste' ground is unusually thin and partially translucent, while the painted decoration is of the highest quality and can be attributed to Antoine Caton (op. 1749-98) and Louis-Gabriel Chulot (op. 1755-1800). The front reserves of the smaller vases feature gallant pastoral scenes, while the centrepiece shows a rather unusual motive, a schoolmaster beating one of his pupils and a girl being punished by having to wear asses’ ears. In keeping with the subject, the trophies on the sides of this vase show schoolbooks, a doll, kite and various other toys.

    The figure scenes all relate to works by François Boucher. C265 is based on his ‘Autumn Pastoral', now in the Wallace Collection (P482) and C266 on ‘The enjoyable Lesson’ (National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne). Boucher may have supplied drawings of these compositions to the manufactory since they are reproduced in the same sense as the original painting. The schoolmaster scene (original drawing now in the Albertina, Vienna) is in reverse and must therefore have been worked from a print.

    In the 19th century, the 4th Marquess of Hertford acquired them in the sale of the maréchal Sébastiani, who had been French Ambassador to London when Hertford House was let as the French embassy.