"Cat and dog fighting" micromosaic snuff box early 19th cent

"Cat and dog fighting" micromosaic snuff box early 19th cent
"Cat and dog fighting" micromosaic snuff box early 19th cent
"Cat and dog fighting" micromosaic snuff box early 19th cent
"Cat and dog fighting" micromosaic snuff box early 19th cent
"Cat and dog fighting" micromosaic snuff box early 19th cent
"Cat and dog fighting" micromosaic snuff box early 19th cent
"Cat and dog fighting" micromosaic snuff box early 19th cent
"Cat and dog fighting" micromosaic snuff box early 19th cent
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"Cat and dog fighting" micromosaic snuff box early 19th cent

25,000.00

A round micromosaic plaque set on copper representing a dog fighting a cat in a wooded landscape attributed to the workshop of Filippo Puglieschi (active beginning of 1800), after a design by Johann Wenzel Peter (1745-1829), mounted on top of a french burlwood snuff box, tortoiseshell lined with gilt metal hinged mountings.

Circa 1820-30

Dimension cm 8,5 x 2,5 the box - cm 7 the micromosaic.

Excellent condition commensurate with age.

The Dog Fighting the Cat

The subject of the ‘Dog fighting with the cat’ was a popular one;  the same scene appears inlaid  on works of different sizes  by the best micromosaicisti  of the time as  Michelangelo Barberi ( 1787-1867), Moglia and Filippo Puglieschi (active at the beginning of 19th century). This very same subject is recorded by Giuseppe Antonio Guattani in his “Memorie Enciclopediche Romane sulle belle arti, Antichita”, ec. Roma, 1806-1819, vol. II, page 90-91 (fig.1 ). He describes his visit to the studio of  the micromosaicist Filippo Puglieschi in 1805-06 where he saw the mosaic of the dog  and the cat ( la pugna del cane e il gatto) amongst more than 450 pieces made to fill an order from the North. (Sic) he quotes under the section MOSAICO :

’’Nello studio  del Sig. Filippo Puglieschi, uno de’ piu’ fioriti per il Mosaico abbiamo trovata una splendida commissione proveniente dal North di num. 450 pezzi in genere di collane , spille, anelli, pendenti, tabacchiere, etc. Vi abbiamo osservato al piu’ fino punto condotti due gruppi, l’uno del Leone col Cane, l’altro di una Pantera, e Capretto, originali del celebre Peters…Altro bellissimo ,con la pugna del cane e il gatto…Cosi’ quella piu’ ridicola, che spaventosa guerra fra il Cane e il Gatto, perche’  in principio fu troppo bene immaginata ed espressa dall’inarrivabile Peters, ognuno se ne compiace di vederla ,massime in mosaico.”

A box with a micromosaic of a dog and a cat fighting by Puglieschi (fig. 2), from a cartoon by Peter, circa 1805, is illustrated in the catalogue of the Exhibition, The Art of Mosaic, Selection from the Gilbert Collection  by Alvar Gonzalez-Palacios. Los Angeles Country Museum of Art, 28th April-10th July 1977, page 71, no. 40.Another mosaic (of smaller dimensions) with the same subject signed D.M. was on a silver box by Carlo Giuliano ( sold Phillips, London, Lot 14, 22nd may 2001).

Johann Wenzel (Venceslao) Peter (Karlsbad, Bohemian 1745-Rome 1829) went to Rome in 1774 where he worked as a painter of animal subjects which were eagerly bought by the Roman nobility and soon entered many European collections. He worked for Prince Marcoantonio Borghese and the 160 animals painted in the entrance hall of the Palazzina of villa Borghese are by him. (Literature: Ferrara , op. cit., p.258; Gonzales-Palacios, op. cit., pp.272 and 287 lists payments to Peter for some paintings in the Villa; “Il Settecento a Roma , 19 March-31 May 1959, p.172; “Arstisi Austriaci a Roma dal Barocco alla Secessione, March-April 1972, Museum of Rome, Palazzo Braschi).

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