Musical automaton "Clown playing lute"

    Musical automaton "Clown playing lute"

    France, Paris

    Circa 1900

    Lambert, Léopold

    Papier-mache, wood, metal, fabric, lace; sewing, mechanical works, painting, wood works, carving, parfling

    58 х 27.5 х 20 cm


    Musical automaton in the form of a clown’s figure. With paper-mache head, painted insects on the cheeks and chin, fixed brown glass eyes, two-color mohair topknot, bisque hands holding inlaid ivory and mother-of-pearl lute soundboard, on velvet-covered base with single-tune barrel movement driving four cams with five levers that cause the musician to strum with his right hand while raising the neck of the instrument in his left, leaning back and forth on his stool, crossing one leg and then lifting both together, bending his head in concentration, looking left and right as if to survey his audience, and then saucily sticking out his tongue. Dressed in painted cream satin suit with blue latticework bolero jacket, with brass key and stop/start button.