The latest Montblanc Patron of Art writing instruments edition celebrates the extraordinary life and cultural legacy of Ludwig II of Bavaria, with four limited edition writing instruments.
The release of the collection coincides with the Montblanc de la Culture Arts Patronage Award, the brand’s ongoing support for arts and culture worldwide in recognising the exceptional contributions of today’s patrons of the arts, since 1992.⠀
Referred to as the “Swan King” or the “Fairy Tale King”, he facilitated the creation of the composer’s greatest works, including Tristan and Isolde, Die Meistersinger and Parsifal. An enigmatic and inspired king that still fascinates 130 years after his death, King Ludwig also dedicated himself to the construction of extraordinary palaces such as the fairy tale Schloss Neuschwanstein, a dramatic romantic fortress decorated with scenes from Wagner’s operatic masterpieces.
The Patron of Art Homage to Ludwig II Limited Edition 4810 writing instrument features the swan as its central theme of design – a recurring motif throughout King Ludwig II’s life. The cap is made of translucent lacquer with a special guilloche design underneath, emulating the white feathers and a champagne gold-coated clip shaped like the long curved neck and head of the graceful water bird.
The blue of the translucent lacquer barrel contrasts the regal crown-shaped cap, with engraved lettering that drew inspiration from the royal seal of the Bavarian monarch, whereas the lacquer mirrors the blue of Ludwig’s official royal portrait, as well as the blue of the pillars inside the throne room at Neuschwanstein castle.
This matches the Au750 solid gold nib of the fountain pen, decorated with an engraving of the fairy tale Neuschweinstein, as well as the ring set with a round-cut red synthetic stone, with a champagne gold coated cap ring is engraved with “WWV 75”, the code of Wagner’s Lohengrin about the Swan Knight sent in a boat pulled by swans to rescue a maiden – a homage to the opera that set the young Ludwig on his journey of patronage.
With its birds and floral motifs, the skeleton design of the Patron of Art Homage to Ludwig II Limited Edition 888 writing instrument depicts Ludwig’s passion for creating paradises and poetic refuges, where he could escape from the real world earned him his “Fairy Tale King” moniker.
Inspired by mural paintings of the lavish throne room at Neuschwanstein, the intricate Au750 solid gold overlay features a cut out design that augments the translucent white lacquer underneath, finely paired with a platinum coated swan-shaped clip and fittings decorated with engravings. The cap ring is set with a round cut ruby, and the Montblanc emblem at the top of the cap is made of precious mother of pearl – evoking the opulent surroundings the king created in each of his palaces.
The Patron of Art Homage to Ludwig II Limited Edition 40 continues the collection’s lavish and elaborate commemoration of King Ludwig’s spectacular fairy tale castles in further exclusivity.
Limited to only 40 pieces, in reference to the age at which Ludwig died in 1886, the fountain pen pairs the technical virtuosity of the métiers d’art with some of the most precious materials: the solid Au750 champagne-coloured gold writing instrument features a guilloché under a white lacquer surface, masterfully decorated with a hand-engraved gold inlay of a lion motif, symbol of Bavaria. The barrel captures an inlay of miniature feather work, surrounded by a guilloché pattern on the solid gold barrel inspired by the grandiose architecture of Neuschwanstein. Under a sapphire glass is a skilled artisan leaning on the near-forgotten art of plumasserie, or the craft of preparing and applying feathers by hand.
The meticulous artistry caps off with a cap top set with a Montblanc diamond and a ruby baguette, with a cone embellished with a line of rubies above the engraving of the king’s initials, and two rubies sparkle as the swan’s eyes on the pen’s clip, before finally, an intricate design engraved upon the gold nib of the fountain pen that recalls one of the flying machines that Ludwig II dreamed of journeying in to his castle.
Lastly, with just five pieces available worldwide, the Patron of Art Homage to Ludwig II Limited Edition 5 honours the date of September 5, 1869, when the construction of Neuschwanstein Castle began.
An elaborate tribute to the lavish world of the king, the solid AU 750 champagne gold of the fountain pen is paired with sparkling diamonds set with full pave, while the barrel is embellished with a Romanesque motif reminiscent of the castle’s opulent interiors, and adorned with an inlay of miniature plumasserie surrounded by a guilloche pattern. The ruby baguette set on the cap top ring is inspired by the rich red sash worn by Ludwig II in his royal portrait, whereas the engraving on the castle tower shaped cone is taken from the seal of the monarch, and the precious gold royal crown on the cap top is set with a Montblanc Diamond fit for a king.