A large and beautiful Spanish style Art Deco comb encrusted with blue rhinestones
CONDITION: the comb has been repaired at some time in the past but this is not visible on the front. 1 missing stone.
SIZE: 7 x 6½ ins (18 x 16 cms)
APPROXIMATE DATE: 1910s – 1920s
MATERIALS: celluloid, rhinestones
This spectacular Art Deco period comb is made in pale translucent celluloid and is encrusted all over its surface in bright blue rhinestones. In between the solid panels of blue stones are openwork elements with a scroll like design.
This comb is a variety of the iconic design of Art Deco combs whereby “blades” or openwork lines radiate outwards from the base of the heading. This is a very typical motif in Art Deco combs, and in the art of the period. Some people interpret the spokes as representing the wheel, and thus symbolising the Futurist fascination with speed and machinery. This spokes or sunray motif appears in many forms. Sometimes it is abstracted to a series of lines or mere “spokes” which radiate out from the base of the heading.
The collage picture shows sitters from contemporary illustrations, revealing the fashionable hair style and wearing similar ornaments.
This type of ornament is often known as Spanish or mantilla comb because it resembles a smaller version of the traditional large shell ornaments worn by Spanish ladies with their native dress. In practice any comb which has a high upstanding heading or top which stands proud of the top of the head is often called a mantilla comb.
These very large and spectacular combs are a feature of the early Art Deco period.
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