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Statuette - Ceres seated

Ceres seated

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    France (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1870 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Deniere, Guillaume (sculptor)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Ivory and bronze on red mottled marble stand

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This is a statuette made in France, in about 1870, probably by Denière. It represents Ceres seated and is made of ivory and bronze, set on a red mottled marble stand. The form of the face and the pose of the figure recall ancient Roman sculpture; the style of the piece as a whole is redolent of the classicising tradition prevailing in France in the 1870s. Although contemporary records state that the piece was shown in the Annual International Exhibition held in London in 1871, it is not listed in the exhibition catalogue. However it is likely to have been shown there, and was probably purchased by the Museum direct from the exhibitor, Denière, who must also have been the manufacturer of this object.
In Greek mythology Ceres was the goddess of agriculture, especially associated with corn. She was often worshipped as the earth-mother, the prime source for fertility.

Physical description

Ceres wearing toga-like drapery, is shown seated on a block, resting her sandalled feet on a smaller block, the whole figure resting on a separate red mottled marble stand. She holds a sheaf of corn in her left hand, and wears a garland of fruit in her hair. The head, neck, bare right shoulder, arms and toes are of ivory, while the drapery and block on which the figure is seated, as well as the smaller block on which she rests her feet, are of bronze.

Place of Origin

France (made)


ca. 1870 (made)


Deniere, Guillaume (sculptor)

Materials and Techniques

Ivory and bronze on red mottled marble stand


Height: 54 cm including stand, Width: 26.67 cm from toe to back, Height: 45.5 cm figure alone

Object history note

Purchased for £40 from Monsieur Denière, 15 rue Vivienne, Paris in 1871. Transferred from the Bethnal Green Museum (now Museum of Childhood) to the V&A in 1982.

Descriptive line

Statuette, ivory and bronze on marble socle, Ceres seated, probably by Denière, French, ca. 1870

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Trusted, Marjorie, Baroque & Later Ivories, Victoria & Albert Museum, London, 2013, cat. no. 269, p. 278


Ivory; Bronze; Marble




Sculpture; Bronze; Myths & Legends


Sculpture Collection

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