Lot 4
  • 4

A Meissen figure of a Waxwing circa 1741-45

10,000 - 15,000 GBP
12,500 GBP
bidding is closed


  • porcelain
modelled by J. J. Kändler and J. G. Ehder, preening an outstretched wing, naturalistically painted with russet plumage and black wings edged in yellow, red and white, perched on an oak stump with a large speckled green caterpillar (some losses and restoration to leaves)


The Collections of the Earls Beauchamp, Madresfield Court, Worcestershire, bearing black enamel inventory number 50734
Arthur S. Vernay, New York 
The Garbisch Collection, Sotheby's New York, 17th May 1980, lot 193

Catalogue Note

Kändler's work records list his modelling of a waxwing in January 1741: 'Einen Vogel in Ziemlicher Größe, Ein Seyden Schwanz genannt Welcher auf enen Starcken Aste aufs Sauberste nach der Natur Vorgestellet und nach poußiret ist.' [A bird of moderate size, known as a waxwing, which is on a strong branch, cleanly depicted and modelled after nature]. The model was subsequently worked on by J. G. Edher later in the same year as noted in the work records for July and August: '1 Vogel, den Seyden-Schwantz genannt, rein bossirt' [1 bird, called the waxwing, cleanly modelled]. Kändler also returned to the model again in 1774, and examples of that period are known bearing crossed swords and dot marks. The bird is technically a 'Bohemian waxwing', although it is often erroneously described as a cedar waxwing, a similar bird, prevalent in North America, but lacking the distinctive yellow and black striped markings on the folded wings.

A pair of waxwings is illustrated by Hackenbroch (1956), pl. 15, fig. 21. Another pair, formerly the property of the Earl of Shelburne, was sold at Christie's London, 9th October 1995, lot 118; and a third pair sold in the Rockefeller sale, Sotheby's New York, 2005, lot 197.