Not currently on display at the V&A

Night

Roundel
ca.1900 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place of origin

Bertel Thorvaldsen (1770-1844), a Danish sculptor, lived for 40 years in Italy and was greatly influenced by the ancient classical sculptures that he saw in Rome. Many of his sculptures are classical in style, like the original pair of roundels of 'Night' and 'Day' which he produced in 1815 and 1816. Many copies of Thorvaldsen's roundels were produced, in marble and in plaster, both during his lifetime and subsequently. This plaster example of 'Night' was made long after his death but shows how classical designs remained popular for interior decoration.

The roundel belonged to the firm of George Jackson & Sons, a firm who made decorative plasterwork for interior decoration. The firm, originally founded in 1780 in Rathbone Place, off Oxford Street, London, specialised in plasterwork based on classical designs, particularly those of the 18th-century architect, Robert Adam. Jacksons continued to use these neo-classical designs, either for new commissions or for the restoration of older plasterwork. The firm is now part of Clark & Fenn Ltd.


Object details
Categories
Object type
Materials and techniques
Plaster cast
Brief description
Plaster cast of a roundel, depicting 'Night' carrying her children, 'Sleep' and 'Death', after a relief by Bertel Thorvaldsen, English, about 1900
Physical description
Plaster cast of a roundel relief, depicting 'Night' carrying her children, 'Sleep' and 'Death', accompanied by an owl.
Dimensions
  • Approx. diameter: 92cm
  • Approx. depth: 10cm
Style
Credit line
Gift of Clark and Fenn Ltd.
Object history
Night carries her children, Sleep and Death, and is accompanied by an owl. The original sculpture dates from 1815 and has a companion piece showing 'Day: Aurora with the Genius of Light'. The pair of roundels are amongst the most widely reproduced works by this highly successful neo-classical sculptor.

(Given by Clark & Fenn Ltd, incorporating G. Jackson & Sons Ltd)
Subjects depicted
Summary
Bertel Thorvaldsen (1770-1844), a Danish sculptor, lived for 40 years in Italy and was greatly influenced by the ancient classical sculptures that he saw in Rome. Many of his sculptures are classical in style, like the original pair of roundels of 'Night' and 'Day' which he produced in 1815 and 1816. Many copies of Thorvaldsen's roundels were produced, in marble and in plaster, both during his lifetime and subsequently. This plaster example of 'Night' was made long after his death but shows how classical designs remained popular for interior decoration.



The roundel belonged to the firm of George Jackson & Sons, a firm who made decorative plasterwork for interior decoration. The firm, originally founded in 1780 in Rathbone Place, off Oxford Street, London, specialised in plasterwork based on classical designs, particularly those of the 18th-century architect, Robert Adam. Jacksons continued to use these neo-classical designs, either for new commissions or for the restoration of older plasterwork. The firm is now part of Clark & Fenn Ltd.
Collection
Accession number
W.868-1989

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Record createdJuly 20, 2005
Record URL
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