A neo-Greek jardiniere
Height : 37 cm (14 1/2 in.) ; Width : 70 cm (27 1/2 in.) ; Depth : 33 cm (13 in.)
A oval fine black marble Jardinière mounted with polychrom « cloisonné » enamels. Richly adorned with gilded bronze ornaments such palmets, volutes and laurel wreath. Gilded bronze handles in form of antique Greek god heads.
The sculptor Eugène Cornu (1827-1899) worked closely with G. Viot and Cie, set up Boulevard des Italiens N. 24, in Paris. They produced luxurious furniture and art objects, incorporating onyx and further fine marbles and bronze, with sometimes enamel, a combination then considered as a novelty and become quickly highly prized among wealthy collectors. They both showed at the 1867 Universal Exhibition held in Paris a fine pair of onyx, bronze and enamel vases (signed « G. Viot et Cie, Exposition de 1867, Eugène Cornu Inventeur » ; Catalogue Officiel de l’Exposition, groupe III, classe XIV, « meubles de luxe », n°65) for which Cornu and Viot won the Gold Medal (Rapports du Jury International, Exposition Universelle de 1867 à Paris, 1868, t. III, groupe III, classe XV, chapître II, § 2, p°45 & 46).