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French Musical Automaton "Acrobat and Musicians in Garden Performance" by Phalibois

Lot Number: 
16
23" (58 cm.) A garden scene with a centering flowering tree in the background and various shrubs and ferns upon the painted ground, features an elegant musical and acrobatic performance. Posed upon an acrobatic balancing bar is a bisque head doll with sculpted hair and painted facial features, loosely-jointed wooden limbs, wearing a fine silk theatrical costume, and seated on either side are bisque-head musicians with sculpted hair and painted features, one a lady harpist with silk gown and the other a gentleman mandolin player. When wound, music plays (two tunes), the acrobat dances across the balancing bar, while the musicians play, moving heads and arms. Condition: generally excellent. Mechanism functions well, music needs adjustment. Comments: Phalibois, circa 1865. Value Points: superbly-preserved luxury automaton with splendid details of costume and setting, the charming scene is preserved on original ebony base under original four-sided glass dome.
Realized Price: 
$6,000
Presale Estimate: 
8000/12,000