Gorgeous! Overly large 19th century French kiln-fired enamel box, casket, in fine form. Raised on dore bronze cabriole feet and with a working lock (no key at listing, however), it's a remarkable example of the enamel arts, and shows influences of the enamelist work from both Sevres, France and Bresse, France. A book recently was written/published about the Bressan enamels and many of the gorgeous boxes we have are pictured in that book (see our final photo for reference, but the book is entirely in French). This one is remarkable both for size, and for the floral bouquet and garland so delicately created on top and around the bulbous center of the oval body of the casket. The jewel dots are raised, typical of Bresse enamel work, but that fine art florals are more typical of the enamels of Sevres, France (not the Manufactury Nationale de Sevres - but decorators in the similar trade of porcelain enamels like this). The interior no longer has the old original padded silk lining, and someone has made a full replacement lining which we will include (bottom part didn't get into the photos, sorry - will add a photo later).
Very good to excellent condition for age and type, this casket had just a tiny bit of flaw to enamel and we've had our museum-quality restoration worker do the enamel restoration for us in those small spots so you have a perfectly lovely display box without chips nor cracks nor hairline to detract from either value or enjoyment. A stunningly beautiful box, larger than most at 4.5"x 3.5" and 2.5" high (not counting the legs/base) , it'll be a welcome addition to the most sophisticated collection. We love what we do!
NOTE: This process, which I've written about many times, is one only accomplished with the skill of years and years of practice. The enamel powders are various shades of muddy mauve, taupe, blues, not the least resembling the color they will become once the kiln melts them into the glassine or porcelain like finished product you see here. So an artist is layering on stroke after stroke, working quite literally blind as far as the colors and spacing of the finished outcome he/she hopes to achieve. It is the memory that guides the hand in this art. And subject to such whims of nature and memory, it's always amazing to me that they come out with anything but a glob. I've tried this art, myself, and believe me, it's very difficult. I mostly get globs. The nature of the process is part of the reason why these old kiln-fired objects have such a following and bring the prices they continue to bring.
Our photos are large and clear. We do expect our customers to review them all, evaluate the item based on both our description and our images. Thanks for all the compliments - we love what we do! Antiques & Uncommon Treasure - all the best, all the time!
Antique French sterling silver, Georgian jewelry, sewing, Black Forest, etc 17th to 19th c. European
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