46
46
A gold and enamel snuff box, Pierre-Etienne Theremin, St Petersburg, 1799
A GOLD AND ENAMEL SNUFF BOX, PIERRE THEREMIN, ST PETERSBURG, 1799
Estimate
5,0007,000
JUMP TO LOT
46
A gold and enamel snuff box, Pierre-Etienne Theremin, St Petersburg, 1799
A GOLD AND ENAMEL SNUFF BOX, PIERRE THEREMIN, ST PETERSBURG, 1799
Estimate
5,0007,000
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

La Collection Ribes I

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Paris

A gold and enamel snuff box, Pierre-Etienne Theremin, St Petersburg, 1799
A GOLD AND ENAMEL SNUFF BOX, PIERRE THEREMIN, ST PETERSBURG, 1799
circular, the lid inset with a contemporary circular plaque painted en grisaille with the seated figure of Justice accompanied by a putto scribe on translucent blue over sunray engine-turning, reeded silver frame, the sides and base also enamelled in dark translucent blue over wavy engine-turning within blue and white enamel bead and eye borders, maker's mark, assaymaster A. Yapunov, St Petersburg town mark and date
8.2 cm, 3 1/4 in diameter
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Catalogue Note

The Théremin brothers were born in Prussia, sons of a prolific Huguenot pastor. The elder, François-Claude, trained in Magdeburg, Paris and Hanau as a goldsmith and enameller before working in Berlin with his future father-in-law, Jean-Guillaume Krüger. The younger by 18 years, Pierre-Etienne, was apprenticed to his brother and also trained as an engraver in Geneva before the two set up business in St Petersburg in 1793.  They were rapidly successful, perhaps in part through Pierre-Etienne's marriage to Marianne Duval, daughter of the leading foreign jeweller and retailer in St Petersburg. The brothers supplied the Imperial court with gold boxes, jewellery and other types of goldsmiths' work. Stylistically the Théremin's boxes are closer to Geneva work of the same date than to contemporary boxes produced in Hanau or St Petersburg.Their short but apparently highly lucrative career in Russia was over by 1802. For further details and comments about boxes by the brothers, see Olga Kostiuk, "The Théremin Brothers and their work in the Hermitage", Problems with the development of foreign art, St Petersburg, 1993, pp. 12-20.

La Collection Ribes I

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Paris