Pair of Regency Giltwood Wall Sconces, ca 1820
Franz Xavier Bergman Cold Painted Bronze Hare, ca 1890.
An authentic and marked Franz Bergman cold painted bronze of a hare. In general good condition commensurate with its age.
Franz Bergman senior (1838 – 1894) was born in Gablonz, Northern Bohemia, where he worked as a metalwork chaser and finisher. In 1860 he came to Vienna and founded a small bronze factory. At the turn of the Century his son, Franz Xavier Bergman (1861-1936), inherited the company and opened a new foundry, basing many of his early bronzes on designs from his father’s workshop.
The Franz Xavier Bergman foundry produced an eclectic mix of Oriental, erotic and animal figure bronzes.
Bergman used a cold painted technique, whereby cast bronzes were decorated in several layers of polychrome ‘dust paint.’ These layers were not fired to fix them to the bronzes, hence they are ‘cold painted.’ Sadly the knowledge of this technique, particularly of how to mix the paint, has since been lost.
He has also created many sensuous poses of young women in the Art Nouveau style. The women are disguised by a covering, but they reveal all when a button is pushed or a lever moved.Bergman’s animal figures are often humanised or whimsical, humorous objects d’art, which adds to their popularity. Often, carefully sculpted animals such as bears could be opened to reveal an erotic figure inside.
Bronzes cast in the Bergman foundry are normally stamped with a capital ‘B’ that is placed in a twin handled vase. They are also often inscribed ‘Geschutzt’ which refers to the model/design being ‘registered’ or copyrighted.