Wedgwood Black Basalt Library Bust of Inigo Jones

  • This library bust of English architect Inigo Jones is formed in black basalt
  • Black basalt is one of Wedgwood's most significant innovations
  • It is based on a model by 18th-century Flemish sculptor John Michael Rysbrack
  • This bust is an impressive example of Wedgwood's inventiveness and artistry
  • Get complete item description here
Price available upon request Item No. 31-4238

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This library bust by Wedgwood of famed English architect Inigo Jones is based on a model by 18th-century Flemish sculptor John Michael Rysbrack. Formed in black basalt, a material perfected by Wedgwood in 1768, Jones is rendered with flowing hair and beard, a draping buttoned smock gathered at the shoulder. The exquisitely detailed and dignified bust rests on a circular socle, with an impressed uppercase mark and potter’s mustache cypher under the socle.

Wedgwood achieved the dark color of black basalt by adding manganese and an iron-oxide rich slurry procured from coal mines called carr. In addition to the impressive color, this combination also provided additional strength and solidity. While it initially proved challenging to fire because of its weight, that same characteristic made it well-suited for ornaments, lending stability to library busts and vases, of which this one is an impressive example of Wedgwood’s innovation and artistry. A similar bust of Jones by Wedgwood resides in the Birmingham Museum of Art.

Circa 1795-1850

Impressed uppercase mark

14 4/5" wide x 8" deep x 19 3/5“ high
Wedgwood Black Basalt Library Bust of Inigo Jones
Maker: Wedgwood
Period: 18th Century
Origin: England
Type: Figurines/Statuettes
Depth: 8.0 Inches
Width: 14.88 Inches
Height: 19.63 Inches
Style: Basalt

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