On November 13 in Paris, Sotheby's sells a silver parcel-gilt Trinkspiel made in 1614-1616 in Augsburg by Hans Maulbrunner. This equipment is designed to show to astonished spectators the instant transformation of water into wine. The mechanism is composed of two superimposed sections.
The magician has previously poured the wine into the upper tank without the knowledge of his audience. When he pours the water for his demonstration, the wine is repelled through tiny channels in a vertical cylinder, forming an overflow which pours in four jets into the lower cup. The wine is then conveyed to the mouth of the instrument through a water wheel and a narrow channel.
This piece is beautifully decorated with various silver figures including a small frog in the flow path. Its overall dimensions are 27 x 31 cm and it weighs 700 g. It is estimated € 150K, lot 5. The video shared by Sotheby's includes a complete demonstration ending with wine tasting.
The Thirty Years War begins in 1618, ending the desire to have fun. A Trinkspiel in the shape of a water mill made by the same silversmith is however dated 1626-1628. It is preserved at the Victoria and Albert Museum.
SOLD for € 220K including premium