Mechanical Compositions

Half an hour chime clock picture with musical movement and automaton

    Half an hour chime clock picture with musical movement and automaton


    middle of the 19th century

    Wood, glass, gesso, gold leaf, paper, metal, foil; oil painting, carpentry, gilding

    101 х 89 х 39 cm

    On the musical movement: “1211”


    Musical clock picture is a combination of the painted image and functioning, the dial of which is a part of the plot, the musical movement and the automaton. The picture in wooden frame with relief ornament in the form of laurel leaves, covered with gold leaf, glazed and fastened with the wooden case by hooks. The case consists of two parts. The clockwork mechanism and musical movement are fixed in it.

    Two apertures for winding and two buttons are on the case right side. The envelope of the inner surface of the canvas depicts A mountain landscape with a pond and sailing boats, a bridge with train and a ship in the foreground is depicted on the canvas on the case inner side. A steep cliff with serpentinous road, houses and a lighthouse on the mountaintop are on the left side. A stream in the form of twisted glass tubes, a cow with owner, a water mill, a group of buildings with the figures of residents, a church with clock and red shamrocks shaped fleurons on the tower are on the right side; with a windmill is above.

    The image of the clock tower with white enamel dial is visible through the framed aperture on the canvas; with hours’ graduations by black Roman numerals and two hands. The clock movement is with pendulum, with lever escapement and two gongs  half an hour chime. Musical movement -  paper music roll, six tunes, a sound comb and spring drive.

    When the movements are turned on, one of the six melodies sounds, the lighthouse lamp rotates, balloons move against the mountains, the ship sways in the waves, the train moves along the bridge, the water mill wheel rotates, the stream “flows”.