Lot 7
  • 7

Two Meissen figures of green woodpeckers circa 1734-40

15,000 - 20,000 GBP
55,000 GBP
bidding is closed


  • porcelain
modelled by J. J. Kändler, with green, red and black plumage, crossed swords marks in underglaze-blue (some restoration)


Olive, Lady Baillie, Lowndes House, London (dining room), acquired from Maison Jansen, Paris, 29th June 1937

Catalogue Note

Green woodpeckers are mentioned in Kändler's work records in February 1733 and again in 1734: 'Im monath Febrarii 1733 Sind an Neuen Modellen gefertiget Worden folgende...Ein Grunsprecht, Kändler...Im Monath Martio 1734 sind auf hiesiger Königl. Pohl. und Churfürstl. Sächs. Porcellain Fabrique an Neuen Modellen gefertiget worden...Einen Grünsprecht auch in Lebens Größe und ruhet auf Einem verzierten Postament, Johan Joachim Kändler' [In the month of February 1733 the following new models were completed...a green woodpecker, Kändler...In the month of March 1734 new models were finished here, at the Royal Polish and Electoral Saxon Porcelain Factory...a green woodpecker, life-sized and resting on an ornate pedestal, Johan Joachim Kändler]. The present models are of the 1734 type, with a beetle, caterpillar and fruit added to the bases.

An example of the plainer and slightly larger 1733 model, bearing a Japanese Palace inventory number, was sold at Sotheby's London, 2nd June 2005, lot 28, where the note comments on the differences between the original figures ordered for the Japanese Palace and the slighly smaller examples of the present type.

Similar examples were sold from the Rovensky collection, Sotheby's New York, 18th January 1957, lot 718; at Christie's London, 5th December 1983, lot 147; from the Rockefeller sale, Sotheby's New York, 11th October 2005, lot 196; and from the Antique Company of New York sale, Sotheby's New York, 10th-11th October 2006, lot 329.