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Three volumes covering all French porcelain in the Royal Collection

Sèvres porcelain factory

Vase Boileau rectifié c.1761

Soft-paste porcelain, bleu lapis ground, gilded decoration and gilt bronze | 51.0 x 28.0 x 23.1 cm (whole object) | RCIN 2299

White Drawing Room, Buckingham Palace

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Sèvres soft paste pot pourri vase with pierced cover. Bleu lapis ground with gilded caillouté decoration and white ground panels, chalice shape with bombé cover, oval tapering foot. Two shaped principal reserves painted with, to the front a polychrome quayside scene, reverse with a bunch of fruit and flowers, the panels on the foot painted with small posies of flowers. Mounted on a (later) gilt bronze stand. The sinuous lines and convex and concave curves make this an ambitious design for Sèvres. The complexity of its shape may account for its rarity - only five examples of this type are known. The model was named after Jacques-René Boileau de Picardie, Director of the Sèvres manufactory (1751-72), and the earliest example dates from 1757/8. The original model was not intended for use as a pot-pourri vase. A modified and richer design was produced in 1762, incorporating an elaborate pattern of pierced decoration on the neck and cover. The only two examples of this later design are both in the Royal Collection. The decoration of the vase is particularly accomplished. The bleu lapis caillouté ground is complemented by a marine scene on the front and flowers on the reverse, attributed to Jean-Louis Morin (active 1754-87). Of particular beauty is the richly tooled and burnished gilding in the full Louis XV style, which accords perfectly with the majestic form of the vase and cover. Text adapted from French Porcelain for English Palaces, Sèvres from the Royal Collection, London, 2009