My Bell Object for the Month of JUNE 2014
May 29, 2014 at 3:38 pm #12322GlockensammlerParticipant
Some of you may find it surprising that I have chosen this particular bell for JUNE.
It is a new bell made probably in Russia and I found it recently via Ebay at a price of only Euro 45. At that time I thought that at such a low price I would receive something of a low quality. However when the bell finally arrived I was immediately fascinated by ist appearance. The sculpture of a beautiful young lady with fine details of face and dress and with a perfect sound and a good size (14 cms.).
The dealer did not want to disclose details about its origin but a few days later a copy was offered by him at the same low price. I am hoping now that by means of our Russian ABA members (I hope they read this) the secret can be lifted.
My questions are:
1. Is this particular bell known in Russia or Ukraine?
2. If so – are they also offered there at such an attractive price Level?
3. Are there others – similar models available?
By the way my bell shows a few marks: CESARO – Fonderie de Seine no. I 6642
May 31, 2014 at 8:48 pm #17630halanbParticipant
First, some general information that may also be of interest to others. This bell is sometimes known as An Amazon or The Amazon. It has nothing to do with Greek mythology, but is based on a 19C style of women’s riding costume. There is a portrait in the NYC Met by Gustave Courbet, entitled “Woman in a Riding Habit (L’Amazone)”. http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/works-of-art/29.100.59
I have three versions of this bell.
The first (6″) is a top quality lost wax bronze with exquisite details, though unfortunately also has a nose bump. It is somewhat similar to an object in the Anselm Lange collection, catalog #0249, though that particular item is much smaller and may have been a candle snuffer, not a bell. I would ask that you supply a translation of the German text from the auction catalog.
The second (5 7/8″) is another old and very good quality lost wax bronze, but not quite matching the standards of the first. I suspect one of the first version bells may have been used to make a mold for the second version bells.
The third (5 5/8″) was made by VEL Manufacturing in Russia, c. 2000. This company was started in 1989, and produces a variety of decorative objects. The bell was clearly patterned on the earlier bells, but not a direct copy. It is much thinner, and looks rather ill-proportioned to me. It is a lost wax bell, decent quality, but there is some porosity to the casting, and all of these are distinctly inferior to the older versions.
Second, and in regards to your particular bell, I have seen it offered for sale several times within the past two years. All the sellers that I saw were from Western Europe, none from Moscow. The initial starting prices were in the 200 euro range. The asking prices have dropped, and some of the more recent have not attracted any bids. It has been a while, but I was seeing them come on the market every two or three months. I have compared the pictures shown in the eBay listings, and I would consider them much better than the VEL items, but not as good as the earlier versions. Some have been inscribed Cesaro, and others have not. I believe they all had the same maker’s lozenge, all in the lower portion of the skirt, but curiously were placed in various locations around the bell, often in right front. However, I have no information as to where the bells were cast.
June 1, 2014 at 11:49 am #17631GlockensammlerParticipant
thank you so much for the details on the background of this particular bell. I was not aware of a similar bell in the Anselm Lange collection. Checking the information in his auction catalogue I noticed in his German description that he mentioned that the inside clapper was a replacement which confirms your guess that originally it was not a bell but a candle snuffer. Position of the arms, hat design and size also differ. Lange also mentioned that the bell shows a lady in her riding dress.
The Ebay dealer offering that bell is residing actually in Berlin and has a Russian name. So there seems to be a connection to Eastern Europe.
Of course I noticed a certain porosity in parts of the bell even though I think it is an excellent work and I am still surprised that such a bell can be obtained at such a low price level.
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