Or are you looking for Search the Archives?

Please complete the form to email this item.

Vase

  • Place of origin:

    Northern Italy (possibly, made)

  • Date:

    19th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Bell-metal with lead and zinc

  • Museum number:

    M.692-1910

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Although vase-shaped, this object was made in the same way as a mortar and it is possible that it was used for that purpose. Stylistically it relates to objects from the late 15th to early 16th century, but the masks suspended from the cherubs' heads are unusual, and the vase is doubtless a later cast.

Physical description

Thistle shaped vase or small mortar with flared rim decorated with 12 acanthus leaves. On the body a band of grotesque masks with foliage emanating from their mouths, alternating with columns surmounted by cherub heads, from which two masks are suspended. On the bowl, two grotesque (or lion) masks alternating with acanthus leaves in groups of three. Flattened foot, decorated with downward-facing acanthus.

Place of Origin

Northern Italy (possibly, made)

Date

19th century (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown

Materials and Techniques

Bell-metal with lead and zinc

Dimensions

Height: 9.5 cm, Diameter: 9.1 cm rim, Diameter: 8 cm base, Weight: 1552.2 g

Object history note

From the Salting bequest.

Historical context note

The foot may have been cast separately and affixed. Although vase-shaped, this object was made in the same way as a mortar and it is possible that it was used for that purpose. Stylistically it relates to objects from the late 15th to early 16th century, but the masks suspended from the cherubs' heads are unusual, and the vase is doubtless a later cast.

Descriptive line

Vase or mortar, bell-metal, with grotesque masks, possibly Italy (North), style of 15th to 16th century, but cast in the 19th century

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

Motture, Peta. Bells & Mortars. Catalogue of the Italian Bronzes in the Victoria and Albert Museum. London, 2001, p. 190, cat. no. 65

Materials

Bell-metal; Lead; Zinc

Subjects depicted

Masks; Foliage; Grotesques; Cherub heads; Acanthus leave

Categories

Bronze; Household objects; Metalwork; Sculpture; Containers

Collection

Sculpture Collection

Large image request

Please confirm you are using these images within the following terms and conditions, by acknowledging each of the following key points:

Please let us know how you intend to use the images you will be downloading.