Emperor of China (Qianlong) | Sèvres

Attributed to Josse-François-Joseph Le Riche (1741-1812)
Year of creation: 1775 
40.5 x 14.5 x 14.2 cm
The statue depicts the Emperor of China Qianlong (1736-1795), based on a watercolour drawing of Father Giuseppe Panzi, an Italian jesuit at the Chinese court. This design belonged to the ministry of Louis XV, Henri Bertin, was put at the disposal of the Manufacture to create a biscuit. Traditionally dated 1775, it would (but no archived record) according to the drawing Josse- François-Joseph Leriche. The first copies were sold in 1776 to Duchess Mazarin and Queen Marie Antoinette. In the same year, Sèvres produced a plaque painted with the portrait of Qianlong. This piece, now conserved in Versailles (inv. RF 35760) was acquired by Louis XVI. The second exemplar of this design of the porcelain and biscuit edition was offered to the Emperor himself in 1781.