A very fine Louis XVI gilt bronze grand cartel clock of fourteen day duration, signed on the white enamel dial by the maître-horloger Robinet à Paris and also signed by the equally reputed enamellist Barbezat. The dial with black Arabic and Roman numerals and inner red numerals for the days of the month with a fine pair of pierced gilt brass hands for the hours and minutes and blued steel pointer for the calendar indications. The movement with anchor escapement, silk thread suspension, striking on the hour and half hour on a single bell with outside count wheel. The magnificent Neo-classical gilt bronze case surmounted by a two-handled covered vase with pinecone finial with two further pinecones below, above a guilloche border and swagged drapery falling either side of the circular bezel with scrolling acanthus leaves either side, with a shaped glazed pendulum aperture below the dial centred below by a female head and foliate scrolls and a stylised foliate boss.
Paris, date circa 1776-80.
Height 90 cm, width 40 cm.
Literature: Hans Ottomeyer and Peter Pröschel, “Vergoldete Bronzen”, 1986, p. 185, pl. 3.8.10, illustrating an identical case signed on the dial Le Nepveu à Paris.
Pierre Robinet, a reputed Paris clockmaker was the son of another maker Jean-Baptiste Robinet. Pierre was born in 1751 and began his apprenticeship in 1766. He was received as a maître-horloger ten years later and in 1778 was appointed a deputé of his guild. At that date up until 1789 he was recorded at rue Greneta, Paris. A large Louis XVI clock by him showing the quarters, phases of the moon and centre seconds, housed in a gilt bronze case is conserved at the Musée des Arts-Décoratifs, Paris.
It is always exciting to find the name of the enamel painter inscribed on the dial, especially one at fine as Elie Barbezat. Barbezat, who specialised in enamelling clock dials, supplied a number of the leading Parisian clockmakers including Jean-André Lepaute, Antoine Crosnier and probably Julien Le Roy.
The beauty of the movement and dial is perfectly offset by the magnificent case. A very similar case can be found in the Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg and another at the Landesmuseum, Stuttgart.
Price: price on request
Richard Redding Antiques Ltd.
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