Porte-Manteaux au Hibou, impressive by its outstanding scale and superb figurative details, is one of the first examples of the form to have been welded, assembled and patinated by the artist himself. Three slender legs in the form of wiry roots support a finely sculpted tree trunk that extends to several leafy branches, onto which is perched a docile owl. Only approximately six examples of this design are known to have been made, this one originally comprising the collection of French interior designer Jeannine Dubois. As it is common for works created before 1970, this example is not signed. The quality of the chiseling and the stunningly variegated hues to the patina attest to the work’s early execution. Following century-old techniques allowing for the possibility to easily create multiples, Diego Giacometti sandcast the forms and parts comprising the object, which are welded together by hand. One of the differentiating factors of the present Porte-Manteaux, being an early creation dating to the mid to late 1960s, resides in the exceptional quality of the patina which presents a stunning variety of greens, browns and reds that attest to the artist’s predilection for creating shade and depth through color and texture. By contrast, as Christian Boutonnet and Rafael Ortiz noted, the work produced by Giacometti and his assistants towards the end of his life shows the artist’s gradual cognitive decline and an overall lesser sensibility towards color and texture, making his 1960s production all the more attractive. The present work is a superb and early example of this rare form, demonstrating Diego Giacometti’s masterful abilities to blend function and unique artistry.