Charles Wertheimer. Catalina von Pannwitz (1876-1959) of Berlin and Heemstede, acquired from the latter in 1910.
An extremely fine pair of Louis XVI gilt bronze mounted beau bleu Sèvres porcelain pot-pourri vases and covers, each bearing the Sèvres mark of two interlaced L's and the gilder's marks possibly for Jean-Pierre Boulanger as well as an unidentified painter's mark, each of the porcelain bodies and cover decorated with pink roses within laurel-wreath reserves on a beau bleu ground, the cover with a foliate finial above plain bands and a pierced scroll and laurel leaf frieze above a painted laurel leaf band, with foliate scrolled pierced handles on a foliate mounted cup supported on a spreading circular foot with rosette banding upon a square base
Paris, date circa 1775-80
Height 27 cm. each.
As a reflection of their beauty and quality these vases have belonged to a number of important connoisseurs. In his day Charles Wertheimer was one of the world's best known art dealers who had considerable knowledge of Old Master paintings as well as Renaissance and later French works of art and was also one of the most enthusiastic collectors in London. The pair were acquired from Wertheimer in 1910 by Catalina Carolina Friedericke Georgine von Pannwitz who with her husband Walter built up a significant art collection that included ceramics, bronzes and Italian, French, German and Dutch Old Master paintings; among examples from their collection are pieces of Meissen, majolica, bronze statuettes and Old Master works in the Metropolitan Museum, New York.
Born in Rostock Germany in 1876 she came from the Roth family who owned substantial land in Argentina. In 1908 she became the second wife of Walter von Pannwitz an aristocratic German lawyer with whom she lived with in Berlin where she was considered one of the most beautiful women of her day. In 1919 Catalina became an Argentinean national, the following year her husband died and thereafter she lived in Holland at De Hartekamp, a stately home in Heemstede. In October 1940, soon after the German occupation of Holland, she sold six Old Master paintings to Göring who ensured that she received an exit visa to Switzerland. According to accounts De Hartekamp was under Göring's protection during the war and remained untouched as did the reminder of her art collection.
The Sèvres factory produced vases à monter, or vases intended to be fitted with gilt bronze mounts, from about 1764. Intended to be assembled as garnitures the vases were of three different forms; two of them of differing dimensions were, as here of tapering cylindrical form while the third was egg-shaped. The finished glazed vases were then generally sold to the marchand-merciers who adorned them with mounts. The earlier vases were glazed in solid ground colours, particularly blue and green, however historic invoices show that by 1770 some pieces decorated with green and blue grounds were scattered with foliate wreaths centred by roses.
The vases or goblets cloches are adorned with bronze mounts of one of five basic styles which suggests that the marchand-merciers who purchased the vases à monter produced their own signature mounts. A complete garniture incorporating a pair of egg-form vases, a pair of small cylindrical and one large cylindrical vase is in the Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford (see Linda H. Roth and Clare Le Corbeiller, "French Eighteenth Century Porcelain at the Wadsworth Atheneum: The J. Pierpont Morgan Collection", 2000, p. 156, pl. 74).