Rare pair of neo-classical gilt bronze three-light candelabra
Paris, early Louis XVI period, circa 1775
This pair of chased gilt bronze candelabra have fluted stems decorated with laurel toruses, fretted friezes and interlace and pearl motifs; their nozzles are adorned with gadrooning and stylized leaves. The round bases are decorated with wide fluting and twisted ribbon bands. The removable light bouquets have two lateral arms terminating in scrolling acanthus leaves and the fluted drip-pans feature interlace friezes; the centre of each candelabrum contains an urn whose in whose upper portion is placed a third light.
These elegant candelabra relate to designs created in the early 1770’s by such Parisian ornamentalists as Jean-Charles Delafosse. A few rare pairs of similar candelabra are known: a pair of candelabra formerly in the Marcel Boussac collection (sold in Lille, March 15, 1981); a second pair, during the 19th century in the Département de la Maison du Roi and placed by the Mobilier national in Versailles (see the exhibition catalogue Le château de Versailles raconte le Mobilier national, Quatre siècles de création, Paris, 2011, p. 229). An identical pair of candelabra, with different light bouquets, was in a European princely collection (sold in Paris, Mes Ader-Picard-Tajan, Palais Galliera, December 2, 1971, lot 106); another pair stands on the mantle of the dining room of the Musée des arts décoratifs of Lyon (illustrated in Lyon, Le très riche musée des Arts décoratifs, Dossier de l’art, June 98, n° 48, p. 7).