Pair Of 19th Century Austin And Seeley Composition Stone Garden Figures ( sold )
A glorious pair of 19th century, composition stone garden figures, by renowned makers Austin and Seeley. Depicting Ceres or Demeter, goddess of agriculture, grain crops, fertility and Bacchus or Dionysus god of
agriculture, wine, fertility, drama, and revelry. Standing on later pedestals, both figures in good condition, beautifully weathered and covered with lichen, old repair to the arm of Bacchus ( please refer to images )
Felix Austin began making artificial stone products in around 1828 at his works in New Road, London, describing himself variously as an architect, statuary mason and sculptor as well as artificial stone maker. Entering into a partnership with John Seeley around 1840 they produced an "artificial limestone" a cold cast composition, which comprised a mixture of Portland cement, broken stone, pounded marble and coarse sand which was then cast in moulds, rather than fired clay, preferred by the other leading garden ornament manufacturers of the day.
They worked with many notable architects and supplied statuary to many grand houses and institutions. You can find examples of their work at the Swiss Gardens, Biggleswade, a dolphin fountain and eagle, Blickling in Norfolk comprising of sphinxes, finials and dog, Hampton Court where there are several figures and Wrest Park.
English circa 1840
Ceres / Demeter H 56" x W 17" x D 16"
Bacchus / Dionysus H 54" x W 19" x D 12"
Pedestals H 26" x W 20" x D 13 1/2"