Italian Micromosaic Plaque, Secret Admirer
Italian Micromosaic Plaque, Secret Admirer Italian Micromosaic Plaque, Secret Admirer Italian Micromosaic Plaque, Secret Admirer
Italian Micromosaic Plaque, Secret Admirer

Italian Micromosaic Plaque, Secret Admirer

  • This incredible Italian micromosaic achieves the detail and beauty of a fine painting
  • The objet d'art depicts a young maiden secretly catching a gentleman kissing her portrait
  • Thousands of tiny glass tesserae are precisely matched and placed to create this scene
  • Likely acquired during a Grand Tour, authentic micromosaics are incredibly rare
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Item No. 30-9258
$44,500
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description
A young maiden secretly catches a gentleman kissing her portrait in this charming 19th-century Italian micromosaic plaque. Though the scene appears to be a painting from a distance, closer inspection reveals thousands of minuscule glass tiles, or tesserae, placed so precisely upon a slate backing to compose this awe-inspiring and brilliantly hued objet d'art.

This micromosaic was likely acquired during a Grand Tour, the once-requisite rite of passage for young gentlemen of the upper class. Wealthy aristocrats making their Grand Tour through Italy were very fond of micromosaic works. These techniques were expensive, requiring not only precious materials but highly skilled craftsmen. Authentic 19th-century micromosaics such as this are scarce and were available only to the wealthiest European tourists.

Micromosaics have roots among the ancient Romans who decorated their homes with mosaics. Many highly detailed examples utilized exceptionally tiny tesserae, effectively creating the art form that eventually became known as micromosaic. The art of the micromosaic re-emerged during the 19th century, most notably in the workshops of the Vatican, finding favor among the surge of affluent tourists making their requisite Grand Tour across Europe. Avid collectors of these incredible works included Napoleon and Josephine, Russian czars and ancestors of the legendary de Medici family.

Circa 1885

13 1/8" wide x 10 5/8" high
specifications
Period: 19th Century
Origin:Italy
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