French Musical Automaton Picture Clock
French Musical Automaton Picture Clock French Musical Automaton Picture Clock French Musical Automaton Picture Clock French Musical Automaton Picture Clock French Musical Automaton Picture Clock French Musical Automaton Picture Clock French Musical Automaton Picture Clock French Musical Automaton Picture Clock French Musical Automaton Picture Clock
French Musical Automaton Picture Clock

French Musical Automaton Picture Clock

  • This incredible creation blends a clock, cylinder music box and an automaton with a beautiful painting
  • In terms of rarity and complexity, this is one of the most amazing treasures we've ever acquired
  • When activated, the painting's farrier scene literally comes alive with several moving components
  • This musical automaton picture clock is attributed to Parisian automaton maker Xavier Tharin
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Item No. 30-9019
Price: Available upon request
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description
One of the most amazing timepieces we have ever acquired that offers far more than meets the eye, this incredible work of art blends the beauty of a painting with the mechanical complexities of both a cylinder music box and an automaton. While it is clear to see the integrated clock residing within the arched giltwood and gesso frame, when activated, this painting quite literally comes alive. As the cylinder mechanism within plays its lovely tune, every character in the farrier's shop becomes animated – from the group of farrier's toiling away at the forge and anvil forming the horseshoes, to the wagging of the charming terrier's tale.

This musical automaton picture clock is attributed to Xavier Tharin of Paris who was the preeminent creator of this fantastical "moving pictures", especially this particular farrier scene. His process mixed oil painting and hand-colored lithograph images that were layered starting from the back, middle and foreground to craft the complex series of movements throughout the painting.

A look inside this particular work reveals the complex mechanism (with the three gongs, pendulum and cylinder components immediately visible) which must run the timepiece, the cylinder musical component plus the multitude of moving elements in the painting...a truly incredible feat considering the technical prowess to create just one of these devices. Musical picture clocks most often are found blending the time and musical components, but to find a specimen that also includes the automaton workings as well is nothing short of extraordinary.

French, circa 1880

44" wide x 10 1/4" deep x 48 1/2" high
specifications
Period: 19th Century
Origin:France
Depth:10.25 Inches
Width:44.0 Inches
Height:48.5 Inches
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