Japanese Imari porcelain and French ormolu clock set


This superb and unusual three-piece clock set is composed of three exquisite Japanese Imari porcelain vases affixed with beautifully-toned ormolu mounts.


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This beautiful three-piece clock set, comprised of a mantel clock and a pair of flanking en suite candelabra, is crafted from the striking combination of  Meiji-period Japanese Imari porcelain and French ormolu. The use of Japanese ceramics by French craftsmen demonstrates the European taste for Japanese objects during the late 19th century; this taste manifested itself in European art as Japonisme, or the approximation of the Japanese aesthetic by European artists. 

The mantel clock is wrought from an ormolu-mounted Imari porcelain vase. The vase is painted in the traditional Japanese style, with blue, red, and gold pigments over white ground and compositions of chrysanthemums, various other foliate forms, and abstract motifs. The porcelain body of the vase is raised on a pierced ormolu base, while the rim above is set with an ormolu mount. The top of the vase is surmounted by a domed porcelain lid, with an ormolu lion-form finial above. The front of the case is inset with a circular enamel dial, painted with Japonisme motifs, the dial encompassed by a moulded ormolu bezel with a crest of a tied ribbons.

The en suite candelabra are of similar form, each wrought from a similar but smaller Imari porcelain vase and affixed with conforming ormolu mounts. Each candelabrum issues five ormolu scrolled light branches.

Clock: Height 47cm, diameter 22cm
Candelabra: Height 55cm, width 25cm, depth 25cm


Country of Origin
French, Japanese
Date of Manufacture
Late 19th Century
Late 19th Century
Japanese Interest, Japonisme, Meiji
Ormolu (Gilt Bronze), Porcelain
Blue, Cream, Gold, Multi-coloured, Red


47 cm / 18.5 inches
22 cm / 8.7 inches


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