THE STYLE MASTERPIECE OF KINGS SELECTION by Wolf Burchard Art, antiques and design carved from stone at the Fair
49 STONE CARVING AT THE FAIR
Hard-stone carving at Masterpiece London includes Imperial porphyry and a sculpture by Henry Moore
Dancing Man, date, George Cinerary urn, 2nd–3rd century Kennethson (1910–1994), AD, Roman, porphyry, ht 41cm medium, ht 46cm, Redfern Galerie Chenel, stand A2 Gallery, stand B10 Each side of this porphyry funerary The critic Richard Cork has written urn is decorated with a garland that George Kennethson regarded consisting of pomegranates, fruits sculpture as a medium of extraction and laurel leaves. At either end of rather than addition, but at the the urn is the head of a beast, under same time the artist was careful which sits a putti (one playing not to waste or destroy too much with a goose and the other holding material. In his figurative works, a dead bird in its arms). Porphyry such as Dancing Man, which – a purple hardstone first mined in show the influence of Epstein and Egypt – was a material favoured Gaudier-Brzeska, the British by the Roman emperors and this sculptor succeeds in both conveying piece is likely to have an imperial a sense of movement and gesture provenance. The base of the urn is and setting it in stone. a 19th-century restoration. 1 2
Reclining figure: curved, 1977, Henry Moore (1898–1986), black marble, length 144cm Landau Fine Art, stand B52 The reclining figure is Henry Moore’s most recognisable form and it is one that reappeared throughout his career. This unique black marble piece is one of Moore’s seminal carvings. It was sold by the British sculptor to an American private collector and displayed at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1983 in an exhibition of sculptures and drawings, mounted to mark Moore’s 85th birthday, titled ‘Henry Moore: 60 Years of His Art’. 3
Aurora, c. 1843–45, John Gibson (1790–1866), marble, ht 61cm, Lullo ∙ Pampoulides, stand B20 John Gibson’s most famous work is the polychrome sculpture known as the ‘Tinted Venus’, but this bust of Aurora, goddess of the dawn, finds the sculptor – who trained with Canova in Rome – working in a more strictly neoclassical manner.
Corinthian order capital, 5th-6th century AD, Byzantine, marble, ht 27.9cm Rupert Wace, stand A26 The chief characteristics of the 4 5 Corinthian order are the ornate acanthus leaves that form its capitals. Here, the abacus – the flat top of the capital – is carved with a border of laurel leaves and a repeating border of acanthus leaves forms its base.
Wertheimer Phoenix Casket, 1856–60, Samson Wertheimer (1811–92), marble, jasper, lapis lazuli, mother of pearl, ormolu, 18.5 × 35.5 × 23.5cm Thomas Coulborn & Sons, stand C13 The lid of this casket comprises a 17th-century Florentine pietra dura panel, which depicts a phoenix 6 rising from the flames.
Tripod stand, c. 1810, Paris, porphyry with gilt-bronze mounts, ht 83cm Alessandra di Castro, stand A30 The central gilt bronze support of this tripod in the Empire style is decorated with stylised acanthus leaves and grapevines and the two square legs each end in a foot in the form of a lion’s paw.
Mace head, c. 1st millennium BC, lapis lazuli, ht 5cm Kallos Gallery, stand C20 Stone mace heads are some of the earliest weapons to have survived, but examples carved from lapis lazuli are exceptionally rare. This particular head would have been attached to a wooden shaft and used for ceremonial purposes. 7 8