A Berlin KPM porcelain plaque with a portrait of King Friedrich Wilhelm IV
Depicting the King en face in a dark blue uniform with a high-necked red collar, decorated with six orders, including the Order of the Black Eagle. The background shows the gable of Charlottenhof Palace in sepia camaieu. Signed on the right "Aug. Eurich". Impressed sceptre mark with K.P.M. H 25.3; W 18.5 cm. In the original frame with associated border, H 38, W 30.5 cm.
Painted by August Eurich after a design by Franz Krüger, circa 1845.
Private collection, Hesse. - Lempertz Berlin, auction 886, 27th May 2006, lot 136.
Raffinesse & Eleganz - Königliche Porzellane des frühen 19. Jahrhunderts aus einer amerikanischen Prrivatsammlung, Berlin, Stiftung Preußische Schlösser und Gärten, Schloss Charlottenburg, 28th July - 4th November 2007
Die Sammlung Cohen. Porzellane der grossen Manufakturen 1800 - 1840. Wien, Liechtenstein Museum, 16th November 2007 - 11th February 2008
Refinement & Elegance - Early 19th-Century Royal Porcelain from an American private collection, New York, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 9th September 2008 - 19th April 2009
Wittwer (ed.), Raffinesse & Eleganz, Munich 2007, no. 3.
For this artist, whose porcelain miniatures were represented at the Academy exhibition in 1848, cf.: Thieme/Becker.
“Following the tradition of his forefathers, Frederick William IV of Prussia had his portrait painted on porcelain relatively often. His likeness lent an additional significance to the vases he used as gifts. (...)
While the KPM archive records do not provide a great deal of documentation on the acquisition of source material, they do contain many references to the purchase of royal portraits. In 1947, for example, the directors of the manufactory commissioned the porcelain painter Wilhelm Escher to copy the portraits of the seven rulers of Brandenburg-Prussia in the collection of engravings in Schloss Montbijou - from the Great Elector Frederick William I through to King Frederick William IV - in order that these copies should then be copied onto a vase intended as a gift for the Freiherr von Stillfried. (...)
In the case of the porcelain painting in the Twinight Collection, in which the garden in front of the crown prince's residence of Schloss Charlottenburg is suggested in the background of the king's portrait, the original source was a painting, unsigned and undated, which has survived in the KPM archive. In this approximately square painting the portrait is placed in a round reserve, suggesting that it was made as the original for a round porcelain portrait in a rich bronze frame designed by Gustav Stier and given by the king to the Prussian envoy in London, Christian Karl von Bunsen, in 1844. This porcelain tondo is today in the Kunstgewerbemuseum in Berlin. The painting in the KPM archive may be a copy of a portrait (today unknown) by Franz Krüger, from whose hand we also have a very similar portrait which, however, differs from the KPM painting with respect to the background, the fullness of the king's features and a number of small details of the uniform.” (p. 143)
We would like to thank Dr. Samuel Wittwer for kindly allowing us to print this extract from the catalogue "Refinement and Elegance".