18th Century Viennese Figural Porcelain Group of Europa and Zeus
Date: 18th Century
PRICE: $ 5000
Dimensions: H 45 cm W 42 cm D 19 cm
Shipping: $ 200
Beautiful large figural mythological group with Europa en Zeus. I never came across such a large model and think it's impressive by size, details and color.
At the inside of the base their is a mark, a shield. These under glazed shields where used in Vienna, Austria. Viennese porcelain originated early 18th century as they followed the succes of German Meissen and Höchst porcelain, these shield marks where used between 1744-1784 in the "Governments Porcelain Period" before "Sorgenthal".
This group was completely hand assembled from parts of many different moulds, then finely finished and left unpainted only glazed. The finish and the mark at the bottom indicate that this statue has been produced in the 18th century. The 'cracks' in the bottom are from the baking process, you can see the lines where different parts where assembled together, that is very common for this kind of porcelain.
This group is about a Phoenician princess abducted to Crete by Zeus.
The myth of Europa has inspired writers, historians, painters and European politicians throughout the centuries; they gave her name to a continent and created several pieces of art depicting the love making of Zeus and Europe. But let us first recall the most common version of this ancient legend. According to Greek mythology, the Phoenician maiden named ‘Europa’ was one of the many objects of affection of Olympian chief god Zeus. At first sight of Europa, the god was infatuated by her striking beauty and grace. Not being one to ignore his desires, Zeus immediately comes up with a cunning plan. In order to avoid the anger of his jealous wife Hera, and to get his way with the girl, Zeus metamorphosed in a beautiful white bull. While the young maiden was gathering flowers, she saw the bull, and – fascinated by its handsome flanks and gentle behaviour - caressed him and got onto his back. Zeus took that opportunity to abduct Europa and swim to the island of Crete. He there revealed his true identity. 9 Months after this encounter Europa gave birth to Minos, who would become king of Crete.
Note: Not restored. Europa misses her toenail and the cherub figurine misses some fingers of his left hand and some glazing on his toes. Please look at the pictures
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