Bangalore-Style Silver Teapot
length: 24.3cm, height: 14.5cm, weight: 632g
This particularly elegant colonial Indian silver teapot was made in Bombay but using techniques that were most popular in India among Bangalore silversmiths. It is of squat, oblong form, with a wide, oblong saucer-like rim with upturned ends. The pot sits on four flattened, rounded feet.
The spout comprises a finely rendered elephant’s head and trunk. The handle is similarly formed from an elephant head and a long, swirling trunk with ivory insulators. The domed, oblong hinged lid is chased with Indian hunting scenes, and is surmounted with a very fine, solid-cast lion finial.
The sides of the teapot are chased with three elephants and a figure on horseback amid palms and other trees on one side, and on the other, with a rider on horseback with a lion, a deer and a tiger beneath a canopy of trees.
The flat, undecorated surfaces of the teapot have been finished with a matt-silk finish, achieved with the application of a strong acid – a technique favoured by Bangalore silversmiths and introduced from Europe around 1870 (Wilkinson, 1999, p. 165).
The teapot is in fine condition with no losses, dents or splits. The work remains crisp and free from over-polishing.
Dehejia, V., Delight in Design: Indian Silver for the Raj, Mapin, 2008.
Indian Silver 1858-1947, 1999.
UK art market
Inventory no.: 1722
more examples of Indian silverwork.