An interesting early 20th Century erotic Austrian bronze study of a walking crocodile. The crocodile's back is hinged to reveal a gilt bronze naked beauty reclining within the reptile's interior with very fine detail and colour, signed with the Bergman 'B' in an amphora vase
Height: 3 cm
Width: 13 cm
Depth: 7 cm
Condition: Excellent Original Condition
Materials: Cold Painted Bronze
Book Ref Antique Vienna Bronzes by Joseph Zobel
Franz Bergman Sculptures
Bergman is celebrated for his great attention to detail and wonderful vibrant colours, Franz Xavier Bergman (1861-1936) is, arguably, the most famous of the Viennese cold-painted bronze artists, delighting in producing Oriental, Arab bronze and animal subjects, including Harem beauties, Arab tradesmen, Scribes and Arab Warrior and almost every animal subject that was known at the time.
His father, also Franz Bergman (1838–1894), was a professional chaser (embosser) from Gablonz, Austria who came to Vienna and founded a small bronze factory in 1860. Franz Xavier inherited the company and opened a new foundry in 1900. There he created numerous cold painted (so named because the numerous layers of polychrome paint, applied to the bronze, were not fired to fix them to the metal) figures. Many other bronzes were still based on designs by Franz Bergman, the elder.
Animal figures can, occasionally, be found for a few hundred pounds, though sculptures in pristine condition and larger figures can be worth several thousand pounds. Value is affected by condition. The cold painted decoration is relatively easy to damage and worn Enamel will reduce value considerably. Restoration can also reduce the value considerably, especially when done in a non-sympathetic manner.
For a further selection of sculptures by Bergman please click on Franz Bergman Sculptures