The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
'L'amour Falconet'; 'piédestal la baigneuse'
  • Cupid and Psyche on pedestals
  • 'L'amour Falconet'; 'piédestal la baigneuse'
  • Manufacture de Sèvres
  • Étienne Maurice Falconet (1716 - 1791), Designer
    Nicolas-Laurent Petit (1725 - 1814), Painter
  • Sèvres, France
  • 1762 - 1763
  • Soft- and hard-paste porcelain, painted and gilded
  • Cupid, C493, Height: 23.6 cm
    Pedestal, C493, Height: 11.5 cm
    Psyche, C494, Height: 23.8 cm
    Pedestal, C494, Height: 11.8 cm
  • Factory mark: Interlaced L's enclosing 'K', the date letter for 1763.
    Painter's mark: 'PT' for Nicolas Laurent Petit
  • C493-4
  • Study
Commentary
History
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Unglazed (biscuit) porcelain figures after a design by Falconet; the pedestals decorated with an underglaze-blue ground overlaid with gilding, painted with marine trophies and swags of flowers by N.-L. Petit, and gilded.

    Cupid was introduced at Sèvres in 1758, derived from the marble created by Falconet for Madame de Pompadour’s garden in the Hôtel Pompadour in Paris, and then in 1761 Falconet created it's pair Psyche (C492) especially for Sèvres so that they could form a decorative pair.

    A pedestal was created for them, but those shown here in fact belong to a different model, The Bather, also by Falconet, after Lemoyne, where the watery imagery of the marine trophies would have been more appropriate.

    This pair belonged to the marquis de Courteille (Louis XV’s minister in charge of the factory) and, on his death in 1767, passed to his daughter and thence by descent, appearing in the Paris sale of the Château de Courteille in 1847, when they were sold with the wrong pedestals.