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Restoring the Sunflower clock

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This 'Sunflower Clock' is a gilt-bronze clock in the form of a sunflower, mounted into the centre of a Vincennes porcelain vase. It contains a bouquet of porcelain flowers which date from the early 1750s.

Natural flowers were sometimes mingled with the porcelain examples. As the porcelain bouquet surrounding the clock can be entirely removed, it is possible that the porcelain flower stems were placed in the vase over the winter, to be replaced with real specimens during the summer months.

Some of the original porcelain flowers were lost or damaged over time. In preparation for the exhibition 'Painting Paradise: The Art of the Garden', new eighteenth-century flowers were added to replace missing pieces, and others enlarged.  The arrangement of the bouquet was also amended to match contemporary records.

Vincennes porcelain factory (1738-56)

The Sunflower clock