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Talbert Brass Clock

London
Designed by Bruce Talbert (1838-1881). Made by Cox & Co., or Hart, Son, Peard & Co. (c. 1842 – after 1920). c. 1871-1873

Trained as an architect, Bruce Talbert (1838-1881) was one of the leading exponents of the Reform Gothic style and also one of the most influential designers of the Aesthetic Movement in Great Britain. Works directly attributed to Talbert are rare.

Bruce Talbert designed this clock about 1871. The form was depicted in the Illustrated Catalogue of Gothic and Other Artistic Domestic Furniture, Fittings, Decorations, Upholstery and Metal Work published in London by Cox & Sons in 1872. Cox & Sons – who prominently exhibited at the International Exposition in London in 1862, as well as at the 1876 Philadelphia Centennial – were distinguished metalworkers and furnishers who came to employ most all of the significant designers associated with the English “Art Furniture” Movement.

Two sizes of Talbert’s clock are known, with various filigree motifs. One is in the Museum für Angewandte Kunst in Vienna, which retains the original receipt for its purchase from Hart, Son, Peard & Co., who may have been a subcontractor of Cox & Co. The present example is the more diminutive version of this unusual and quite distinctive clock.