Wine cooler from the maiolica service of Duke Albrecht V
Leonardo di Ascanio Bettisi
W. 67 cm
Acquired from the art trade in 1896
Inv. No. Ker 2608
Duke Albrecht V of Bavaria was an avid collector and used his extensive connections to acquire high-level works of art This includes a Faenza maiolica service dated 1576, one of the earliest services with a uniform decorative design. The more than 100 pieces still preserved today are all decorated with the Wittelsbach coat of arms as well as scenes from the Bible, classical mythology and Roman history. This outstanding showpiece was intended as cooling basin and shows the stoning of a blasphemer at the base of the bowl. Heavy scratch marks prove that it was actually used to cool wine bottles. The other pieces in this service, on the other hand, served purely as showpieces.