The Nemours Mansion and Gardens in Wilmington Delaware recently prepared a very special musical tall case clock for journey to The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City for a rare temporary exhibit starting at the end of this month. The clock is remarkable, as is its history.
Details about the clock from Steve Ryder:
This rare clock was made for Marie Antoinette c.1785, and it plays an organ and a dulcimer combined. Its case was made in the workshop of the German cabinetmakers Roentgen, who catered to the French Court, amongst others. The clock itself and portions of the musicwork are from the hands of Peter Kinzing of Neuwied, Germany. The musical mechanism was restored by my brother Jere Ryder with Arthur W.J.G. Ord-Hume in 1997, and ever since then, this clock has served as the musical show-stopper on museum tours of the Nemours Mansion, former home of the late Alfed I. DuPont. Jere was called in to prepare the clock for shipment.
The exhibition at The Met is entitled, Extravagant Inventions: The Princely Furniture of the Roentgens. It will feature some of the greatest works by Abraham Roentgen (1711-1793) and his son David Roentgen (1743-1807).
The exhibition will also feature an Automaton of Queen Marie Antoinette (1784), depicting a likeness of the queen at a clavichord. The automaton will be set in motion at select times during the exhibition.
The special exhibition will run from October 30, 2012 through January 27, 2013 at the Metropolitan.