I am not preparing for Halloween early...I promise. Any guesses?
Well my commenter got it right it is indeed a stylized satyr capping the herm supports of this unusual Louis XVI rogue marble and ormolu tazza. They are on a stair landing at the Wallace Collection and really make you stop and take notice. I love works like this that really take a rather common form and nuance it with amazing details.
As if the satyrs were not enough there is the inconspicuous snake swirling around the central support.
The ormolu is top notch which would explain why the Wallace curators believe it was executed by master bronzier Pierre-Philippe Thomire.
They are great from every angle...a consummate object indeed. Until net time --AR