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Martin Brothers bird-form vessels (often referred to as “Wally Birds” after their creator Robert Wallace) are, for most of us, aspirational items. Largely made to resemble leading political and industrial figures of their time and rendered in the manner of caricature pioneered by the 19th-century English satirical magazine Punch, these whimsical works were eagerly sought-after by London’s “chattering classes,” with commissions for their production coming from aristocrats including Lord Faringdon and Sir William Drake.

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Image from The Sutton Place Hercules: An Immersive VR Exhibition - ArtAncient (book your place here)
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