Offered here is a 19th century, handsome, Verre Eglomise Silhouette of the H.M.S. “LEE” Gun Boat in a 13 7/8 x 11 ½ inch Bird’s Eye Maple frame. Inside measurement of Silhouette art measures 9 7/8 by 7 ¾ inches. Inscribed at the bottom, just above the inner gold curved line of the oval is: H.M.S. “LEE” GUN BOAT. Through some research from Wikipedia I learned that the British Royal Navy had six ships named H.M.S. LEE (all gun boats) dating from 1776 to 1899, the last being a destroyer, meeting its demise in 1909. I cannot say for certain which Gun Boat this was, except that it was one of the six. The first one in 1776 was an 8-gun sloop serving on the Canadian Lakes: one an 8 gun galley, one a 20 gun; the next two a wooden screw and the last as I mentioned above, a destroyer. I’m certain there is much more information available about these gun boats, but not enough space here to tell. Verre Eglomise, a French term, is a process of adding a color design and gilding on the reverse side of the glass in a picture frame, thus producing a mirror finish (back-painted and gilded glass). The process dates back to Italy during the 13th to 16th centuries. Today, you might find this style of art on mirrors and mantle clocks. This particular frame depicting the “LEE” is quite nicely done with attention paid to details, like the British flag waving from a mast and the waves lapping at the ship and the people waiting on shore. The fine line ropes going up the masts are intricately done and are line clean. It’s amazing artistry. What is unique about this style of art is the painted silhouettes cast 3D shadows on the backing. It becomes mesmerizing, almost moving. The oval rim edge of the painting is trimmed in gold roping with four star-like flowers in each corner of the glass. The silhouette is quite impressive and is in excellent age-related condition. More information on British Silhouette Artists and their Work can be found in Sue McKechnie’s book with said title. Sales tax must be collected for buyers living in or picking up in New York State. Local tax rate applies.
Framed 19th Century Verre Eglomise Silhouette of H.M.S. LEE Gun Boat