A small Copeland Parian bust of the “Swedish Nightingale” Mlle Jenny Lind dated October 1847 from the sculptor Joseph Durham (1814 –1877). This bust is also marked as reduced by Cheverton in 1847. There is no maker’s mark but it is identical, including the marks, to the Copeland versions described and pictured in the references below.
Height: 21½ cm (8½“)
Jenny Lind (1820 – 1887) was a Swedish Opera singer who was famed and much admired across Europe and North America. In later life, which she spent in England where she died, she was professor of singing at the new Royal College of Music.
There is a reference to Durham’s original marble bust in the Art Union Monthly Journal for 1847 (page 362 (September)) which states:
“BUST OF JENNY LIND – Mr Durham, a young sculptor of great promise – and who has, indeed, already achieved many works of merit – has executed a bust of this accomplished lady. It is a production of high talent; exceedingly felicitous in composition………………..The bust by Mr Durham is an admirable likeness: he has pictured the intermediate stage … in the character of the gifted woman – neither calm nor exited; but he has preserved the smile that we have never seen equalled for sweetness and eloquence.”
A footnote is added:
“It gives us much pleasure to state that this bust is about to be reduced by Cheverton, and executed by Mr Copeland in his statuary-porcelain; it will no doubt be published ere long …………… ………………..[this bust] is admirably calculated to be copied in Mr Copeland’s beautiful material, because of the simple character of the composition.”
Benjamin Cheverton invented a “reducing machine” in 1828, patented 1844, for making smaller or enlarged copies of stone or bronze sculptures. This machine is illustrated in the Parian Phenomenon p 8, Fig 2.
The sculptor Durham’s most familiar work, the Memorial to the Great Exhibition of 1851, incorporating a statue of Prince Albert, consort of Queen Victoria, stands in front of the Royal Albert Hall in London.
The Parian bust is illustrated in the “Parian Phenomenon” page 185 figure 612 and in Robert Copeland’s book “Parian - Copeland’s Statuary Porcelain” page 214, fig B41. The original marble is in the Royal Collection.
Condition Two tiny chips to leaf tips on the left side of the wreath on her head, and a small firing fault in the hair, otherwise perfect.
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