"Eglomise" is the term applied to the back-painted glass panels in these old French souvenirs. Most of them date 1800s, though they were made up through about 1910 in this manner, too. Later ones often have a photo set in instead. The early ones are our favorites, sometimes a screened ink-line like drawing that is then hand colored, or sometimes a full miniature painting original, all worked on the back side of a panel or convex plaque of glass. There are sometimes open spots left and a final step is application of thin mother of pearl panels so that the windows shimmer with pearlescent light, or architectural details are pearl - you can see how fun those are. I'm listing a whole collection from this genre, one at a time, so will just give the barest detail of each as we move through the collection.
This one is superb - a view of the Post Alexandre II, the magnificent bridge built for the 1900 Paris Expo, as entryway to the Expo grounds. "The Beaux-Arts style bridge, with its exuberant Art Nouveau lamps, cherubs, nymphs and winged horses at either end, was built between 1896 and 1900. It is named after Tsar Alexander III, who had concluded the Franco-Russian Alliance in 1892. His son Nicholas II laid the foundation stone in October 1896. The style of the bridge reflects that of the Grand Palais, to which it leads on the right bank. The construction of the bridge is a marvel of 19th century engineering, consisting of a 6 metres (20 ft) high single span steel arch. The design, by the architects Joseph Cassien-Bernard (fr) and Gaston Cousin, was constrained by the need to keep the bridge from obscuring the view of the Champs-Élysées or the Invalides. The bridge was built by the engineers Jean Résal and Amédée d'Alby (fr). It was inaugurated in 1900 for the Exposition Universelle (universal exhibition) World's Fair, as were the nearby Grand Palais and Petit Palais."
Souvenir of Paris, c.1900, and the grand Expo of that year, the souvenir box remains in very good condition. There is a little loss to the back-painted glass, primarily showing in the sky as you can see. These can be repainted from the back, but we'll leave that to our buyer's decision. We like them just as they are. There is one corner chip on the backside glass panel, mostly hidden by the pressed brass mounting framework. Otherwise no chips or flaws to the 5 panels of thick beveled glass. The pressed brass framework is in very good condition, as well, age and type considered and clasp is holding tight. Measurements are 3.25" long, 2.5" deep front to back, and 2.75" tall when closed in display.
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Antique French sterling silver, Georgian jewelry, sewing, Black Forest, etc 17th to 19th c. European
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