• Popov_Porcelain_Cellini_2

This figure of Benvenuto Cellini (Cellni) has the same Popov mark as the spill vase seen last week. This model dates to the 1830s. It is from a series of Renaissance greats made by A.G. Popov which also included Leonardo Da Vinci and Paulo Veronese.

The figure suddenly seems brand new to me again though I have had it since last summer. I just got the first stage of its restoration done this past weekend. Gone is the replacement jug handle that looked as though it had been made of petrified chewing gum. I have a hard time imagining that someone thought that looked better than nothing. My eyes would go straight for that handle every time. That handle was like a bad tooth. Now that it has been removed, what’s left just feels so much better.

If ever there were a restoration made for a potter, it would have to be this. In the one other example of this figure I have seen, the jug handle looks pulled. I can pull one very close to what was once there. I have an image of what it should look like and it doesn’t look too difficult. I have a similar lustre I could use to mimic the surface of the rest of the jug. Of course shrinkage will have to be factored in. Much better than making the replacement out of resin.

The jug is a proper miniature in itself. It is thin walled and hollow. Possibly this would have been for a scholar’s desk. One might have dipped one’s quill into the jug to draw ink.  The figure represents a great mind of the past to inspire you as you write.

I especially like the way his cap alone is enamel on bisque while rest of the enamel is on glaze. This makes it really stand out crisply from the rest of the surface. The indentations in the cap are tooled by hand.

18.6 cm in height. I count seven or eight separate moulds used in its construction depending on whether the jug handle was pulled or moulded.