A FINE EMPIRE PERIOD FRENCH GILT BRONZE AND VERDE ANTICO MANTEL CLOCK SIGNED ‘DENIERE & MATELIN, PARIS’
the marble case surmounted by an ormolu figure of Cupid playing a lyre, a laurel wreath and telescope beside him, raised on a plinth base with foliate cast border and mounted with a relief of two Cupids placing roses at a flaming altar, the white enamelled dial with Roman numerals signed ‘Deniere & Matelin Fabr de Bronze a Paris’, the twin train movement with outside countwheel striking on a bell, stamped ‘180 C’, with pendulum,
Francois Matelin and Jean-François Dénière established their workshop in Paris in 1803, and records show that it was based at 58 rue de Turenne in 1813 and at 9 rue d’Orléans au Marais by 1820. During this period the firm flourished, employing over two hundred workers, and supplied clocks and candelabra for the French palaces, most notably Versailles and the Grand Trianon. In 1822, Deniere received the title of Provider of the King, Queen, Princes and Princesses and the Conservation of the Crown Furnishings, and also counted among his privileged clients the Duchesse de Berry and the King of Spain. In 1844 Deniere’s son Guillaume went into partnership with him and in the following years they exhibited at numerous exhibitions including the Great Exhibitions of 1851 and 1862 in London. At the time they were favourably compared to the great ormolu master Thomire.
A malachite mounted and gilt bronze mantel clock dating to 1810 by Deniere & Matelin is now in the Frick Collection, New York, (Horace Wood Brock Collection).
H.L. Tardy, ‘Dictionnaire des Horlogers Français’, Paris; S. 191
P. Kjellberg, ‘Encyclopedie de La Pendule Francaise du Moyen Age au XX Siecle’, Les Editions de l’Amateur, Paris, 1997, p. 226.
A gilt and patinated bronze mantel clock of similar date to the present clock by Deniere was sold at Christie’s, Paris, 21st June 2007, lot 234, 74,000 euros.