Lot 30
  • 30

An Important Nymphenburg figure of Pierrot from the Commedia dell’arte, circa 1759-65

80,000 - 120,000 GBP
bidding is closed


  • 20.2cm., 8 in. high
modelled by Franz Anton Bustelli, about to take a step, holding a gilded lantern in his right hand and gesturing 'indico' with his left, wearing a tightly fitted costume with a yellow belt and a gold buckle with shaped ruffles picked out in blue, the jacket finished with a pleated white ruff and gold buttons, impressed shield mark edged in gilding to front of pierced scroll support, impressed 2 F.B mark to underside of base,  


Alfred Ziffer, Bustelli, Nymphenburger Porzellanfiguren des Rokoko, 2005, p. 479;
Ulrich Pietsch, Preziosen, einer süddeutschen Kunstsammlung, 2001, pp. 86-87;
Guido Gregorietti, Anton Franz Bustelli, il creatore delle più belle figurine in porcellana, in 3 Mostra Nazionale dell'Antiquario, Roma, Palazzo Braschi, 7 Maggio-29 Maggio 1966, p. 73

Catalogue Note

The broad undulating edging, the edge of the hat and the edges of the shoes are in monochrome blue and, together with the white of the porcelain, show Bavaria's signature colours white-and-blue. The mark "F·B" proves that this copy is the first version completed by Bustelli. Until today, only 25 figurines with the F·B mark have been identified worldwide. It is certain that they were not intended for sale originally, but only as samples. The stocks were presumably mixed after relocation of the manufactory from Neudeck to Nymphenburg in 1761 and the original pieces were initially sold in white and as painted copies later.

There are currently only four other known examples of this model with enamel decoration. One is in the Bavarian National Museum, Munich, inv. no. Ker 4095 (published by Friedrich Hofmann, Das europäische Porzellan des Bayerischen Nationalmuseums, 1908, no. 515; Rainer Rückert, Franz Anton Bustelli, 1963, no. 39; Reinhard Jansen, Commedia dell'Arte, Fest der Komödianten, 2001, no. 206); a second from The Maurice de Rothschild Collection, was sold in his (anon.) sale, Christie's London, 28th March 1977, lot 161, previously in The Baroness Van Zuylen Van Nyevelt collection, Christie's London, 25th November 1954, lot 9; a third is in The Lucy Truman Aldrich collection, Rhode Island, Museum of Art (published in the collection catalogue, 1965, pl. 7, fig. 46) and the fourth is in the Chicago Art Institute, Inv.-Nr. 1958.409.

An example left in the white, from the Dr Karl Lanz collection, Manheim, was sold by Hugo Helbing, Munich 1930, and subsequently sold at Christie's London, 2nd-3rd July 1956, lot 70.