Sheet: 42 x 66.8 cm (16 9/16 x 26 5/16 in.); Platemark: 38 x 64 cm (14 15/16 x 25 3/16 in.)
John L. Severance Fund 2000.76
Catalogue raisonné: Fubring 118, 1st edition, 2nd printing with the date 1735 added
In addition to documenting an important commission, this etching endorses the designer’s stylish products by associating them with social status. Meissonnier’s name appears below the image on the left, and the large inscription identifies the illustrious patron, the Duke of Kingston, known well in Parisian society. Perhaps functioning similarly to a magazine advertisement today, the fashionable rococo-style scene invites viewers to imagine themselves as the owners of the luxurious tableware. Contrary to the inscription at the bottom of the sheet, the etching actually shows two views of only one of the tureens made for the Duke of Kingston (the tureen displayed nearby). The tureen not depicted features a crab instead of a lobster on the lid. The grand sculptural centerpiece was probably never produced.
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