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Picture Clock with Automatons “The Farrier’s Workshop”

Bilderuhr mit Automaten Die Werkstatt des Hufschmiedes


Vienna, second quarter of the 19th century

gilt bull's eye frame
oil on metal
verge escapement, Viennese grande sonnerie on wire gongs, repeater, automaton “farrier” coupled with the hour strike, automaton “windmill” coupled with the quarter hour strike, musical movement with 3 tunes by “Ducommun Girod 14759”
25 ¼×30 ¼ in

Two automata are integrated into the idyllic landscape of the painting of this Viennese picture clock. In the foreground you can see the workshop of a blacksmith with a journeyman at the forge and the master, who is making a drawbar together with an apprentice boy. The arm of the blacksmith holding a hammer is movable and so he works on his workpiece – triggered by the strike of the hour. A coachman and his horse with a bell-mounted collar are already waiting for the drawbar to be finished.

The second automaton is the wind wheel of a trestle windmill in the river landscape in the background of the picture. This oldest type of mill in Europe was rotatable due to the mounting of the mill house on a single pole, so it could be oriented according to the wind.

The dial is integrated into the tower of the village church. The movement with verge escapement has a Viennese quarter strike on wire gongs as well as a repeater. A musical movement of the renowned Swiss manufacturer „Ducommun Girod“ with 3 melodies provides the musical background for the picturesque scenery.

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