RARE Exquisite Antique French Gilded Cast Bronze Religious Cherubim Corona
***SOLD***An extraordinary example of religious art, the corona would have served to hold a textile drape for a tabernacle, niche or alter. It originates from a private religious collection in Burgundy and dates towards 1860, within the period of Napoleon III.
The fine workmanship ship is that of a bronze atelier. Each cherub has been cast individually. They are meticulously formed with great detail and style. The faces are serene with benevolent smiles. Chubby cheeks and pretty soft curls of hair give them a true angelic presence. The wings are realistically detailed and curve forward over each cherub's head to create a radiant halo. Each cherub attaches to the base crown with two screw anchors. The crown is cast with two "C" shaped side pieces, each ornamented with a central flower. The band of the crown bears repeating laurel leaves with half globes. The gilding is exceptional, the work of a master.
There are additional places for supporting screws at the center of each angel. This would have been the attachment place for the ring which held the textile. There is a small square inset where a metal support rod would have been attached at the inner bottom edge. The entire corona measures:5 1/2" tall, 8" in diameter at the top, 5" in diameter across the base: the cherubs measure (with wings) 4" tall and 5 1/2" wide, 2" deep at top of heads. The bottom band is 2" tall at the tallest point.
It is in exceptional antique condition. There is very slight loss to the gilding as is typical of age and use. The structure is solid. The gilding has the most marvelous patina, a true gilt without red (the corona shows slightly more red in pictures). It could be polished to a higher gloss but we chose to save the historical patina.
This is a rare find, a piece that was most likely custom ordered and given by a wealthy parishioner to a large Parish. It is a unique bit of history and a stunning example of religious art from the period of Napoleon III.
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