Paul Comolera modelled this magnificent, life-size peacock from a living bird in his studio. Comolera was born in Paris and was a successful animal sculptor in France before joining Minton in 1873. The peacock shows his skill as a sculptor and is his best-known work.
The peacock is one of a series of animal and bird figures made by Minton from majolica, which is buff-coloured earthenware, decorated with brightly coloured lead glazes. It was developed by Minton’s innovative Art Director Léon Arnoux and launched at the Great Exhibition in 1851. Straight away, it proved very popular.
The majolica peacock is a great technical achievement. Only twelve peacocks were produced and this one came to the Walker Art Gallery in 1891. It is special as it is one of very few Minton peacocks known to exist today.