Lot 1542 - A192 The Müller-Frei Collection - Tuesday, 16. June 2020, 02.00 PM

AN IMPORTANT AND RARE MEISSEN "CRINOLINE" GROUP

Circa 1737. Model by Johann Joachim Kändler.
A seated lady, with a pug on her lap, her left hand being kissed by a gentleman. The lady's gaze is directed towards a hussar on her right, namley the Saxon Hussar Schindler, playing the bagpipes, the bellows of which are made of a goat. No mark.
H 15.5 cm.

Small losses. Crack in the base, and restorations.

Provenance:
- Collection Baron Maurice de Rothschild, Geneva.
- Auction Christie's London, The Property of a Noted European Collector Part II, 17.10.1977, Lot No. 186.
- Art dealer, Switzerland.

In Kändler's work report of April 1737, a different version of this group is described: "7. ein neues Croppgen aufs Waaren lager angefangen wie eine Vornehme Dame auf einem Visiten Stuhle sitzet und hat eine Coffee Dasse in der rechten Hand, die linke aber küsst eine Wohl gebuzte Mannes Persohn, Hinter denen Frauen zimmer stehet ein Mohr mit Einem credenz Teller welcher Serviret. Weiln solches aber sehr viel mühe hat ist noch was in künfftigen monat davon zu fertigen übrig blieben" (BA: I A b 9, pp. 69-70).

There are several variations of the hand kissing group, in which different persons or attributes were added to the sitting lady. By far the rarest version is the one with the Hussar Schindler, wearing the guard uniform of a Hussar regiment.

At the time the group of figures was created, Gottfried Schindler was in the service of Count Heinrich von Brühl (1700-1763), who was already Chief Chamberlain at the court of August the Strong and, after his death in 1733, became the most important advisor to Elector Friedrich August II. In the same year, he was entrusted with the management of the Meissen Porcelain Manufactory.

Together with Joseph Fröhlich, Schindler was already engaged as Court Jester at the court of August the Strong and later played the "merry councilor" for Count Brühl in his private theater. Schindler is considered a figure of fun, as he plays on a "Musette de cour", the bellows of which are made of a goat, an aristocratic variant of the bagpipes from the early 18th century.

The Basel Kirschgarten Museum houses three variations of this famous group from the Pauls-Eisenbeiss Foundation, only one of which features Schindler (Ingelore Menzhausen, Meissen from the Pauls-Eisenbeiss Collection, Basel, pp. 98 and 99).

See also:
Historisches Museum Basel, Pauls-Eisenbeiss Collection (I. Menzhausen, Enchanted in Porcelain, 1993, p. 99); Bernisches Historisches Museum, Kocher Collection; Metropolitan Museum of Art New York, Sheafer Collection (Inv. No. 1974.411, mounted with a clock).

CHF 50 000 / 70 000

€ 43 860 / 61 400

Sold for CHF 213 800 (including buyer’s premium)
All information is subject to change.