Singing Birds

Cage with singing bird

    Cage with singing bird

    France, Paris

    Circa 1890

    Bontems, Blaise

    Steel, wood, leather, fabric, porcelain, brass, painted feathers; gilding, casting, gold plating, mechanical and carpentry work, painting

    52 x 32 x 32 cm


    A cage is made of straight wire rods between fluted columns with goldish color finials with cast arches, birds with outstretched wings and goldish color flower garlands, with a dome and suspension in the upper part. The cage is mounted on wooden square base with goldish color bevelled edges with four porcelain inserts with polychrome paintings featuring genre scenes in the open air in triple frame: goldish, blue and embossed and four inserts in the form of fancy creatures in the frames with embossed ornament. The protruding socle with ovoid ornament is fixed on eight feet with fluted rim. Metal rack with crossbar, decorated with ivy leaves and stems, on which a bird (a song thrush) in red and black plumage, with the long tail sits, is fixed on the base upper panel covered with greenish-gray color. Black feather lies next to it. Cam mechanism with bellows, piccolo pipe and spring drive is mounted inside the base; winding hole and activating lever are on the right side. When movement is winded and activated, the bird emits trills, opens the closes its beak, turns its head and moves its tail. The key is in the set.