An unusual piece of folk art, from the Erzgbirge region of Germany, late 19th century. The strawwork has very good colour, with only few (to be expected) losses. The ebony ridge across the roof line and the strip at the edge of the sliding door are later.
There are almost 100 pieces. The birds and animals vary in size from 1/2" to 6" high and appear to have been made from a plaster type material, filled with straw or wood shavings, the exterior covered in materials occasionally painted to give the texture/look of the animals coat. Some of the birds still have traces of their original feathers with which they were decorated. All have been hand painted with the most wonderful faces! Note that due to the fragility of the materials from which the animals are made, a few have lost limbs and there are holes in others.
Noah's family appear to be contemporary to the ark but by another hand.
Width: 25.5" (65cm )
Height: 11.5" ( 29cm )
Depth: 7.75 (19.5cm)