In the mid to late 19th century reverse painted foil prints came into vogue, especially popular were those with colored foil as their background. This decorative trend continued into the 1900s.
We are fortunate to have acquired this one from the 1930s: it's a delightful scene with an intricately executed musical theme and crinkled blue tinsel background.
The colors in this are fabulous and vivid: deep rich red with sunny yellow, chartreuse green, subtle steel blue-gray, and a mocha-y brown with black and white accents and details.
The print, that is, the painting itself is applied directly on the glass (thus, the term: reverse paint).
The print is loaded with musical instruments: there is a huge harp on the left, a large cello (or double-bass perhaps), a tuba, a clarinet and the instructor has her toes resting on a snare drum. There are (organ) pipes in the upper right corner and the floor is actually rows of the ebony and ivory keys of a piano or organ! There is also a row of music on a treble clef staff, and a clock in a mandolin.
The instructor is reading sheet music, while the "student" has sheet music tucked under her arm.
The two human subjects of the print are charming, too, as the instructor has a turban sort of hat on, and is wearing a large ruffled collar and cuffed shirt with a long red jumper, white stockings and black ankle laced slippers. She also has reading glasses on.
The child is delightful with her green and red plaid coat, green tam hat (over her cute bob hair cut), and amazing red and green checked knee socks with black Mary Jane shoes.
This has a kraft paper backing that has been pulled away from the edges. It is signed "Birthday 1939. Best Wishes and Lots of Love, Ione Lease."
The front of this is in fabulous condition with no chips or scuffs; the paint has not chipped away at all (please see detail photos). We've been told this is in the whimsical style of Parrish; there are no signatures on this.
The wood frame, too, is wonderful; it is impressed with dots along its edges with a wood burned Flemish pyrography finish.
This measures 10.75" by 12.75" from edge of the frame to edge of the frame which runs 1/2" thick all around.
This will be very carefully packaged and double-boxed to secure it in transit.