Jean Henri Hunziker
(b. Aarau, Switzerland 1778, d. Paris 1832)
L'Amérique, a Directoire gilt and patinated bronze allegorical mantel clock 'au bon sauvage' with figure personifying America. The case, after a design dated 1799 by Jean-Simon Deverberie (b. 1784–d. 1824), is surmounted by the seated female figure of a half-draped huntress with a bow in her right hand and a quiver of arrows slung across her back, an alligator lying at her feet. The waisted base is mounted with serpent-tied floral garlands and a beaded border, raised on gilt bronze toupie feet. The dial signed 'Hunziker á Paris'. France, c. 1800–1815. H. 48 cm. W. 37 cm. D. 17 cm.
Literature: Tardy II, Pendules Francaises, p. 246. Elke Niehüser, French Bronze clocks, p. 147–149 and no. 808, p. 235. H. Ottomeyer, P. Pröschel et al., Vergoldete Bronzen, Munich 1986, vol I, p. 381, fig. 5.15.28.
The Swiss-born clockmaker Jean Henri Hunziker worked in Paris from around 1800 to 1820, based at Rue de Bussi 22.
After a design dated 1799 by Jean-Simon Deverberie (1784–1824) which is preserved in the Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris.
This clock and others with similar themes appeared at the end of the 18th century in response to the appeal of Jean-Jacques Rousseau's idealized “homme naturel”.