A small Minton Parian bust of an unknown gentleman on a drum base decorated with swags.
An exquisitely modelled and characterful small bust of a man in classical dress marked Gall 1849. The underside of the drum base has the Minton ermine mark and is dated 1849. The bust, without the base, is illustrated in the Minton chapter of The Parian Phenomenon page 128 fig 474.
James Gall (1808–1895) was a publisher, clergyman, cartographer and astronomer as well as sculptor. He developed and published some fundamental mapping techniques for projecting constellations and the earth onto flat surfaces without distortion.
The website Mapping the Practice and Profession of Sculpture in Britain and Ireland 1851–1951 (Mapping Sculpture) http://sculpture.gla.ac.uk/ (1) lists works by James Gall exhibited at The Royal Scottish Academy of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture in the 1850s and 60s. The named subjects all appear to be Scottish and, where photographs of the sitters are available, none matches the bust.
Height of bust with socle 19cm; including drum base 27cm.
Condition: Excellent. There is a small filled firing flaw at the lower fold of the dress.
(1) 'James Gall Junior', Mapping the Practice and Profession of Sculpture in Britain and Ireland 1851-1951, University of Glasgow History of Art and HATII, online database 2011 [https://sculpture.gla.ac.uk/view/person.php?id=msib6_1210070517, accessed 26 Nov 2023]