Thursday, 11 May 2017

Victor Alexander Sederbach

27 figures  were commissioned in 1755 by John Ivory Talbot to decorate the interior of his newly built Gothick Great Hall. The figures were made and fired in the grounds of Lacock by Austrian sculptor Victor Alexander Sederbach.

Pevsner // On these brackets and in these niches stands the extraordinary statuary of Victor Alexander Sederbach, a pleasant, modest man and a cheap sculptor. Beyond that we know absolutely nothing about him. His Christian names sound North-East German, his surname South German or Austrian, and the statues in Austrian abbeys are indeed perhaps the nearest comparison to these wild, violent, and unrefined mid-C18 pieces. They are made of terracotta, and it has been suggested that Sederbach was perhaps a Hafner, i.e. stove-maker, and not a sculptor.  (The Buildings of England: Wiltshire)

The Foreigner who has been here ever since May has executed his Performance in a very Workmanlike manner and your Niches are filled by a set of Inhabitants worthy such Repositories. I presume you are acquainted with the method of making Models for Statues. He proceeds on the same principles, only Bakes them afterwards, by which means they become of a Red Colour and ring like a Garden Pot … I fancy Lord Shelburn will employ him on his arrival at London, where he goes next week; however, as so many of your friends are Connoisseurs, I would advise them seeing his Performances, which are both Easy and not Expensive. His name is sonorous, no less than Victor Alexander Sederbach and yet lodges at one King’s a grocer in Green Street, near Castle Street, Leicester Fields. I am sorry he did not show all his Performances to the Gentleman you sent a note by, but on asking the Reason, was told that someone the day before had Broke a Figure, which made him extremely Captious...

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