A pair of wall lights for the Duc de Lorraine
A pair of large Régence gilt bronze two-light appliques
Height: 62 cm. (24 ½ in.) Height of back-plate: 57 cm. (22 ½ in.)
Width: 34 cm. (13 ½ in.)
Beaussant Lefèvre, Hotel Drouot, Paris, 8 April 2011, lot 138
Galerie Perrin, Paris
J.Charles-Gaffiot, Charles-Alexandre de Lorraine, un prince en sa maison, Puteaux, 2012, pp. 256-258 (ill.)
H.Ottomeyer and P. Pröschel, Vergoldete Bronzen, vol. I, Munich, 1986, p. 64, no. 1.9.14.
M.Chiarini and S. Padovani (eds.), Gli appartamenti Reali di Palazzo Pitti. Una reggia per tre dinastie: Medici, Lorena e Savoia tra Granducato e Regno d’Italia, Florence, 1993, p. 296, no. XIII.17.
A recent authoritative publication links these wall-lights with the furnishing of the royal residences in Nancy by Duc Leopold I de Lorraine (1679-1729) (see Charles-Gaffiot, op. cit., pp. 256-258). They are identical to a pair in the Pitti Palace (inv. 13114-15, illustrated in Chiarini and Padovani, op. cit., no. XIII.17) which were acquired by the duke after a trip to Paris in 1718 when he placed orders with the bronzier, Prieur and the dealer Royer.
After ceding the Duchy of Lorraine and gaining the Grand Duchy of Tuscany in 1737, the wall-lights were among the works of art transferred by the Habsburg-Lorraine family to their new palace in Florence. They can be traced in the Lorraine Grand Ducal inventory drawn up in 1743 (ASF, Guardaroba Medicea 1462, c.103) where they appear in the King’s Cabinet in the Pitti Palace, thus retaining their royal status.
Other similar appliques also belonged to the kings of Bavaria. They decorate the antechamber and the King’s Bedroom at the Residenz in Munich, as well as at Nymphenburg Palace (Ottomeyer and Pröschel, op. cit., no. 1.9.14).
(Restorations to the foliage at the base)