German, Upper Rhine, circa 1690
- Cup and cover
- the silver marked for Georg Fridenberger and dated 1690
- turned ivory with silver gilt mounts, with later, resin finial
- German, Upper Rhine, circa 1690
The lathe made it possible for artists to achieve sculptural forms which would be impossible to create by hand; the operator applied tools to subtract material from a solid medium rotating rapidly on an axis powered by a treadle or a flywheel. Innovations to this basic process in the late 16th century vastly widened the formal possibilities: multiple axes, elliptical motion, elaborate rotating chucks, and complex cutting tools allowed for the production of spiraling, asymmetrical, undercut, and often paper-thin elements.
Georg Fridenberger obtained his poinçon in 1680. During the latter part of the 17th century, Strasbourg silversmiths worked very closely with the silversmiths of both Nuremberg and Augsburg, often completing their apprenticeships in those cities and therefore showed strong German influences in their work. See Hans Haug, L'Orfèvrerie de Strasbourg dans les Collections Publiques Françaises, Paris 1978. The interaction between these cities was such that it is difficult to establish definitively whether the present turned ivory cup and cover was made in Strasbourg or indeed Nuremberg.
E. v. Philippovich, Elfenbein, Munich, (revised edition) 1982, p. 424, fig. 374; K. Maurice, trans. D. A. Schade, Sovereigns as Turners, Material on a Machine Art by Princes, Zurich, 1985, p. 71, fig. 71; B. Gundestrup, Det kongelige danske kunstkammer 1737, Copenhagen, 1991, pp. 261-262, DKK 23.81