The European Decorative Arts Company is proud to present an outstanding collection of European Ivory Carvings from the 17th through the 19th centuries. The group of ivory sculptures featured on this website reflect many of the major art movements that took place in Europe, from the Baroque and Neo-classical, through the Romantic and Historicist periods. Our collection includes works by celebrated artists such as Froment Meurice, Anton Diessl, Duvinage, Maison Alphonse Giroux, and Wilhelm Schulz.

 

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CUP AND COVER by HANS PETER a GEBR. KAUZMANN, Circa 1860-80


Maker(s):  HANS PETER & GEBR. KAUSMANN
Date: Circa 1860-80
Materials/Techniques:    Ivory, silver-gilt
Dimensions: h 18.25 "
Origin: GEISLINGEN, GERMANY
Inventory #: 53
Inscription:
INSCRIBED ON THE UNDERSIDE iN SCRIPT HANS PETER & GEBR. KAUSMANN
Other:


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The central finely carved sleeve, in medium to high relief depicts the Triumph of Bacchus & Ariadne, who are seated in a chariot being drawn by leopards. Bacchus holds his fertility symbol, the thyrsus, within a processional of his followers, celebrating their rites with much revelry. Satyrs blow their pipes or are entwined with snakes and both the cover and base are carved with winged putti in various pursuits, such as playing music, reading or writing.

This cup and cover was made in the town of Geishngen, which along with Dieppe, Erbach and Michelstadt, was an important ivory carving center during the 19th century. It is a rare example that is fully signed identifying its maker and origin. For a full discussion on the work of Geislingen ivories, see Hartmann, op. cit. pp. 239-241, who also provides biographies of the Kauzmann brothers, one of whom exhibited his wares at the Kunstgewerbeausteilung in the Kunstgewerbemuseum in Dresden in 1892.

Clearly inspired by the "pokals" of the 16th and 17th centuries, this cup and cover is a prime example of "historismus" taste that pervaded Europe, England and America from 1830 to 1900.

Objects produced during the Renaissance and Baroque periods served as great sources of inspiration for all areas of the decorative arts. The "shatzkammer" or "treasury" objects collected by the Royal families of centuries past, particularly in Germany and Austria, were both copied and re-interpreted in various ways to satisfy a growing bourgeois clientele intent on surrounding themselves with impressive objects. With its crisp carving and large size, this cup and cover is of exhibition quality and may very well have been shown at one of the major international world fairs.


RELATED LITERATURE;

Ivory, An International History and Illustrated Survey, Harry Abrams Inc.

publishers, New York, 1987.

Richard H. Randall, Jr., Masterpieces of Ivory from the Walters Art Gallery,

Hudson Hills Press, 1985.

P.W. Hartmann, Elfenbeinkunst, 1998-1999.