Jean-Baptiste André Furet, maître 1743-89, clockmaker to Louis XVI.
Property from a Foreign Foundation, sold, Sotheby Parke Bernet, New York, April 7th, 1979, lot 23.
The breakfront base of the present clock (probably intended to house a musical movement) is identical to the base on a small group of celebrated clocks which have a clock case in the form of the head of a Negress. Furet collaborated with the clock maker and dealer, François-Louis Godon to deliver such a clock to Queen Marie Antoinette at Versailles. Other 'Negress' clocks which are recorded with the identical base are: one in the collection of HRH Queen Elizabeth II, illustrated, C. Jagger, Royal Clocks, London, 1983, pp. 162-163. A second from the collection of Marjorie Merriwether Post is in the Hillwood Museum, illustrated, Odom & Arend, A Taste for Splendor, Alexandria, Va., 1998, no. 85; a third is in the Kress Collection, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, illustrated, Parker, op. cit. no. 65, pp. 268-272, this example is fitted with an identical enamelled plaque inscribed by Furet.
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