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Polychrome Model of a Child in a High Chair

Every month we present a special object from the Aronson Antiquairs’ collection. This month we would like to show you this polychrome model of a child in a high chair, from circa 1770.

Traditionally Delft little high chairs and other models of nursery furnishings, such as cradles and fire baskets, were given as gifts to celebrate an engagement or a wedding (symbolic of the function of marriage and the wish for progeny) or especially a birth. They probably were made by a number of Delft factories over a period of many years, but it is interesting that, for example, the 1803 inventory of De Drie Posteleyne Astonne (The Three Porcelain Ash-Barrels) factory, of which the transcription is published in Van Aken-Fehmers 2001, p. 222, includes “7 vuurmantjes, 1 kintje in de wieg en 2 kinderen in de kakstoel” (“7 fire baskets, 1 child in the cradle and 2 children in the high chair”.)

This polychrome model of a child in a high chair from circa 1770 shows a baby wearing a manganese cap and iron-red cuffed white jacket, seated backwards in a yellow hexagonal chair with a tall pierced back. The multifunctional high-chair, kakstoel, of hexagonal shape incorporates a feeding and playing tray, a seat with a hole and a chamber pot beneath, and a footrest with a brazier below to keep the child warm. The captivating life-size cut-out painting of a Child Asleep in a High Chair, circa 1654, by Johannes Cornelisz. Verspronck (circa 1597 – 1662) shows the foot warming brazier.

Polychrome Model of a Child in a High Chair
Delft, circa 1770

The child wearing a manganese cap over its yellow hair, an iron-red-cuffed white jacket delineated in blue and an iron-red delineated skirt, seated backwards in a yellow ground hexagonal chair with high back, marbleized in manganese and blue and reserved on the front and sides with a panel painted with a landscape and buildings.

Height: 12 cm. (4.7 in.)

Price: € 6.500 (appr. US$ 6,000)

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