An unusual jade green Art Deco hair comb with a striking asymmetric design.
CONDITION: good vintage condition
SIZE: 7 ins h x 6 ins w (18 x 15) decorative part 4 ins h (10 cm)
APPROXIMATE DATE: 1910s – 1920s
This beautiful hair ornament is made in jade green celluloid. It has a spectacular design with an asymmetric crescent shaped heading and an intricate openwork pattern. Art Deco was an eclectic art movement which drew inspiration from many cultures and sources. An important influence was that of Oriental lands such as China and Japan. The use of this beautiful jade green reveals this Oriental influence.
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.
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 photograph shows illustrations taken from contemporary sources and depicts similar ornaments and how they were placed in the hair styles of the day.
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