Splendid antique kiln-fired enamel box, very likely by enamelists of Sevres, France, where we primarily think of porcelain. But the same decorators worked in the much more difficult to master technique you see here: powdered enamels layered on convex copper or sometimes silver plaques, then fired in the kiln to very high temperatures to turn the powdered enamel to this glassine-line finish. To create a discernible image is difficult. To create this type of pictorial 5-plaque box would only be the work of a great Master with a lifetime of experience. You see, the enamels in fluid suspended state all are a slightly varied shade of muddy blues, mauves, not at all the color they end up being. It's a work of spectacular skill and memory, also, knowing what you've laid down where, and how they'll all melt to anything but a mush. I know, I've tried this before. The most difficult art! To help you appreciate this box, allow me also to say the finished enamels are rather fragile. Many think these are porcelains, hand painted. They're not. But if you drop the box, the cracks and chips will be immediate. So to show you this one so finely crafted in the Sevres manner and without any damage to it at all - well, you can imagine the thrill it is to find these rare ones. This one is 4.5" long, 3" front to back, and 3.25" high when closed.
Very good to excellent condition throughout. No chips, no cracks, no hairlines in that fabulous old enamel work. Box is sturdy, excellent heavy cast framework. Enamels are, all 5 panels, exquisite! Every panel is remarkable, scenery and or the playful Putti. Even the interior on this one is in very fine condition for age - the old silk original lining. Botton silk panel has become shreds over the centuries. This would be c.1840-60. Best of the best, and just in from a Paris estate, kept anonymous (sorry).
Very good to excellent condition throughout, with the single notable imperfection being a slight warp to the backboard that you can see in one or more of our photos. All measurements noted on our photos.
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Antique French sterling silver, Georgian jewelry, sewing, Black Forest, etc 17th to 19th c. European
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