List Price £35,000
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By KPM, Konigliche Porzellan-Manufaktur (German, founded 1763)
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Scholar, translator and theologian St Jerome (347-420 AD) has long been a popular subject in Western art, and has been famously depicted by artists as diverse as Hieronymous Bosch, Caravaggio, and Pieter Coecke van Aelst.
Jerome was best known in his lifetime for having translated the Bible from Greek into Latin, and for having produced a number of commentaries on it. This would secure his reputation as a learned scholar of Christianity, and, as in this stunning plaque, he is commonly depicted in art as a wise figure, often in contemplation, prayer or writing.
This plaque, a fine work in porcelain by the famed KPM factory in Berlin, Germany, depicts St Jerome kneeling and praying before a Bible, a crucifix, a set of prayer beads, and an hourglass. The painter of the scene has made exceptional use of the chiaroscuro effect: that is, the dramatic contrast between light and dark in the room.
The plaque is signed 'Emile Eckhardt / Dresden' to the lower left, and the reverse side of the plaque bears an impressed KPM monogram, along with a partially-rubbed stamp for Franz Till. Both Eckhardt and Till were important porcelain painters working at the KPM factory. The panel is set in an ornate giltwood frame, which has been carved with scrolling foliate motifs, shells and acanthus leaves.
Plaque: height 56cm, width 45.5cm
Frame: height 90cm, width 79cm, depth 4cm
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