Plate Depicting the Sèvres Porcelain Manufactory Plate
This is a Plate. It was attributed to Mlle Delavale and possibly by Hilaire-François Boullemier (fils) and after Achille Etna Michallon and manufactured by Sèvres Porcelain Manufactory. It is dated 1822 and we acquired it in 1936. Its medium is hard paste porcelain, vitreous enamel, gold. It is a part of the Product Design and Decorative Arts department.
This plate shows a picturesque view of Sèvres, the prestigious French porcelain factory located near Paris. The surrounding countryside had plots of land where Sèvres workers could garden. The figure resting by a wheelbarrow may very well be one of them. The lush greenery surrounding the iconic building may represent the so-called “liberty trees” that were planted on the grounds, during the Revolution, in order to demonstrate the manufactory’s commitment to the republic, and to downplay its connection with the monarchy. Remarkably, the manufactory stayed open throughout the revolution, and even later thrived under the reign of Napoleon and the Bourbon restoration. The plate’s superb enamel painting displays minute details and a fine naturalism. The skilled artist responsible for it was a Mlle Delavale, who worked at the manufactory for two years, from 1821. Following convention, she copied printed sources; this view of the Sèvres manufactory is based on an engraving, after an 1817 drawing by Achille Etna Michallon.
Its dimensions are
H x diam.: 3.2 x 23.5 cm (1 1/4 x 9 1/4 in.)
It has the following markings
Underside:  interlaced LLs enclosing fleur-de-lis above "Sèvres / 22", painted in blue overglaze (manufactory mark)  "5 m r l" with dash beneath and "B. F.", painted in gold  "GL" (?), painted in orange  "2 p + 21 - 10", incised
It is inscribed
Beneath landscape:  cursive "Manufacture Royale de" / "Porcelaine de Sèvres", painted in gold
Cite this object as
Plate Depicting the Sèvres Porcelain Manufactory Plate; Attributed to Mlle Delavale (French, active ca. 1821 - 1822); France; hard paste porcelain, vitreous enamel, gold; H x diam.: 3.2 x 23.5 cm (1 1/4 x 9 1/4 in.); Gift of George B. and Georgiana L. McClellan; 1936-13-32
This object was previously on display as a part of the exhibition Feeding Desire: Design and the Tools of the Table, 1500-2005.