Made out of Statuary Carrara marble, the "Flower basin with a nude drying her foot" is a signed scupture of Riccardo Aurili, Italian sculptor born in 1864. The flower basin is itself made of Vert d'Estours marble.
The sculpture also bears the following inscription, in Italian: "Eseguita sotto la direzione del Prof R. Romanelli," which means: "Made under the direction of Professor R. Romanelli."
Originally from Tuscany in Italy, Riccardo Aurili is a student at the Academy of Fine Arts in Florence where he is friend with Raffaello Romanelli (which will become one of the greatest sculptors of his generation). In the 1880s, Aurili travels to Brussels, where he worked for Carli Brothers. Then he moved to Paris around 1890 and regularly exhibits at the Salons. He also exhibits at the World's Fair of 1900.
Around 1905, he returned in Florence where he became a teacher at the Academy of Fine Arts and finds his friend Raffaello Romanelli who is also a professor. Aurili's signature will now be preceded by "Prof." as it is the case for this planter so we can date it in a period from 1905 to 1915, when he moved to Nice in the south of France.
"Flower basin with a nude drying her foot" is thus realized in collaboration with Raffaello Romanelli
The Romanelli, sculptors florentien family, were highly well-known in the 19th century. Raffaello, son of Pasquale, was called "the most renowned Italian sculptor" by his contemporaries. At age 30, he was elected judge of the Salon of Fine Arts at the World's Fair of 1889 held in Paris. His popularity was such that a park in the United States was dedicated to him, the "Romanelli Garden". In Italy among his major works include the monument of King Carlo Alberto, the monument of Giuseppe Garibaldi in Siena, the bust of Benvenuto Cellini on the Ponte Vecchio in Florence and the cenotaph of Donatello in the basilica of San Lorenzo in Florence .
A. Panzetta, Nuovo dizionario degli scultori italiani dell’ottocento e del primo novecento, Turin, 2003, vol. 1, p. 37 and vol. 2 p. 782