A striking black celluloid Art Deco period hair comb in the Spanish style
CONDITION: good vintage condition
SIZE: 6 x 6 ins (15 x 15 cms)
APPROXIMATE DATE: 1910s – 1920s
This spectacular Art Deco period comb is made in glossy black celluloid. It has a number of palm like elements which arise from the heading and spread out in an arc towards the curved border.
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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