Sèvres Vase

Louis-Rémy Robert (French, 1811–1882)


Image/Sheet: 32.0 x 25.7 cm (12 5/8 x 10 1/8 in.) Platemark: 39.1 x 33.7 cm (15 3/8 x 13 1/4 in.) Mount: 52.4 x 41.6 cm (20 5/8 x 16 3/8 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Photograph, salt print from wet-collodion-on-glass negative, gold toned

Not On View


Europe, Photography



Louis-Rémy Robert was the head of the painting and gilding studios at the Sèvres porcelain works. This majestic depiction of a vase is part of a series of images that Robert exhibited at the Exposition Universelle of 1855, in Paris, to showcase outstanding Sèvres pieces. Robert set the vase against a display of drapery to dramatize its sculptural form and included a small measuring guide to indicate its noble scale. The vessel’s gleaming surface, exquisite painting, and finely modeled detail are enhanced by the use of a glass negative yet softened by the matte surface of the salted paper print. Although made for publicity and documentation, the photograph itself achieves the status of an art object.


In neg., letterpress, l.l.: L. Robert Photo ie / Sèvres. In neg. letterpress, l.r.: Exposition de Sèvres / 1855.


Nineteenth Century Photographs, Essex, England; purchased June 1998.

Credit Line

Gift of Jessie H. Wilkinson—Jessie H. Wilkinson Fund