Exceptional Pair of Austin & Seeley Urns on Pedestals
A rare pair of mid-19th century finials cast stone vases after the “Townley Vase” attributed to the English firm of Austin and Seeley shown with a companion pair of pedestals also by Austin and Seeley.
The original first century B.C. marble vase after which these are patterned was discovered in 1773 and named for its owner, Charles Townley (1737-1804).
Felix Austin began his business in 1828 describing himself variously as an architect, statuary mason and sculptor as well as artificial stone maker. His material was made from Portland cement, broken stone, pounded marble and coarse sand and he encouraged leading architects and designers to work for him. Around 1840 he entered into partnership with John Seeley who had trained at the Royal Academy Schools and also made an artificial stone. Together Austin and Seeley firm became one of the leading manufacturers of garden ornament in mid-19th century England. Their work was known for the quality of artisanship and detail as well as its durability.
Condition: Minor restoration to one of the handles.