Singing Birds

Cage with three singing birds

    Cage with three singing birds

    France, Paris

    Circa 1870

    Bontems, Blaise

    Wood, metal, steel, leather, fabric (velvet), painted feathers; casting, gilding, mechanical and carpentry work

    56 x 38 x 24 cm


    Cage is made of straight and spiralled metal rods with three belts of regular pattern, dome and suspension in goldish color upper part is mounted on octagonal base with embossed goldish color foliage ornament on four supports. Two birds with painted feathers: the yellow one is with black wings, tail and head, the second one is in bluish tints stand on the base brown upper panel, metal rack with crossbar stands between them, on which a bird in bright plumage with orange breast and long tail sits. Cam mechanism with bellows, small piccolo pipe and spring drive is inside the base, winding hole, winding key and activating lever are on the right side. When the movement s winded and activated, the birds warble one by one, the upper bird opens and closes its beak, turns its head and moves its tail, the lower birds turn their heads.