This tea set, salver, and table, together with some now missing cups, were all designed by Bugatti as an ensemble. They were probably acquired from his 1907 exhibition at the Galerie Hébrard in Paris by a wealthy South African widow, Anna Blake, who was living there at the time. It is said that Bugatti's work appealed to her because it reminded her of Africa. Some of the animal and insect motifs suggest mythical beasts or the fossils of prehistoric animals. When Mrs. Blake returned to Cape Town, she took these and other pieces designed by Bugatti with her, and they remained in South Africa until about 20 years ago.
Cleveland, Ohio: The Cleveland Museum of Art; July 18 - September 19, 1999. "Bugatti," exh. cat. no. 41; color repr. p. 26, fig. 37.
Paris: Musée d'Orsay (4/9/01 - 7/15/01) "Carlo Bugatti," exh. cat. no. 137, p. 39; repr. p. 39.
The Cleveland Museum of Art (10/19/2008 - 1/18/2009) and the California Palace of the Legion of Honor, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco (2/7/2009 - 5/31/2009): "Artistic Luxury: Fabergé Tiffany Lalique"