A RARE BÖTTGER RED-STONEWARE PEAR-SHAPED PILGRIM FLASK CIRCA 1715
THE COLLECTION OF MELINDA AND PAUL SULLIVAN
A RARE BÖTTGER RED-STONEWARE PEAR-SHAPED PILGRIM FLASK
of flattened form, applied in low-relief on each side with a bouquet of flowers, the shoulders with a lion mask surmounted by a shell, their mouths pierced to support rings, the lower section molded in low relief with a stiff leaf band alternating with husks, beneath a band of flower rosettes, the neck with molded rim and a band of down-turned stiff leaves, inventory number 'Da 57' inscribed in ink to underside of base
height 10¾ in.
The piece is intact and in overall good appearance. The piece is in overall generally good condition. The footrim has been polished down around the lower edge. Each applied bouquet of flowers has some minor loss to the lower leaf tips, one bouquet with a loss to a third leaf tip. The protruding flange at the rim with a probable polished out chip. A stiff leaf tip at the neck is chipped, two tiny nicks to the rim. The piece could benefit from a light clean.
In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective qualified opinion.
NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING CONDITION OF A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF SALE PRINTED IN THE CATALOGUE.
This vessel form can be compared to an entry in the 1721 inventory of the Dresden Collection under 'Braun Sächß: Porcelain', N: 46. eine runde zusammen gedruckte Bouteille mit 2. belegten Löwen Köpffen, Früchten, Zierathen und einem Fuß 11.Z: hoch und 6 Z: in diam.', published by Ingelore Menzhausen, Böttgersteinzeug Böttgerporzellan, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, 1969, p. 55. The 1770 inventory of the Japanese Palace lists 'Eine runde zusammengedrückte Bouteille, mit 2. belegten Löwen-Köpfen, Früchten, Zierrathen und einem Fuße, 11. Zoll hoch, und 6. Zoll in Diam:No. 46', published by Claus Boltz, 'Japanisches Palais-Inventar 1770 und Turmzimmer Inventar 1769', Keramos 153, 1996, p. 103.
Two polished stoneware flasks of near identical design with silver-gilt stoppers and mounts to the feet still remain in the Dresden State Collection and are housed in the Green Vaults, vgl. Inv.-Nr. V 437 and V 438, illustrated in Dirk Syndram and Ulrike Weinhold (ed.), Böttger Stoneware, Johann Friedrich Böttger and Treasury Art, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, 2009, p. 108, ill. 37. Menzhausen, ibid., suggests the pair was probably bought by Augustus the Strong in 1715 and publishes supporting passages from archival documents. A polished stoneware pilgrim flask with only slight differences to the applied decoration at the rim and footrim was sold at Christie's Geneva, May 16, 1994, lot 68.