Miniatures 01.09.2011
18th Century Mourning MIniature with Contemporary Woman

Property of a Lady: 18th Century Costume, Mourning and Art in a Neoclassical Miniature

Because we’re revisiting some fashion this week, let’s take another look at this spectacular miniature: Let me begin today’s lesson…

Lockets 20.07.2011
1815 Georgian Eye Miniature Pearl

Eye See You – Pearl Eye Pendant

Here’s one that has survived well! Barbara, let’s take a look: Here is a very nice eye pendant, on card,…

Collecting 29.06.2011
Mourning Miniature in Original Box

‘These Ashes Are Precious to Me’ Mourning Miniature in Original Box!

Wow, take a deep breath and enjoy this wonderful miniature from Barbara Robbins – if you like what you see,…

Miniatures 06.05.2011
Le Plus Loin Le Plus Serre Mourning Pendant

The Further the Distance the Tighter the Knot; Eternity and Romantic Symbolism on a French Sepia Miniature

I was going to write about more about memento mori today, but with presenting such lovely and emotionally charged pieces…

Lockets 29.04.2011
Watercolour Pendant 19th Century Ship

Simple But Effective, Watercolour Hairwork Pendant

Often when critiquing a Neoclassical piece with art, you’ll often find me reference the quality of the painting itself. Be…

Lockets 10.11.2010
Watercolour Pendant 19th Century Ship

Simple But Effective, Watercolour Hairwork Pendant

This particular painting is obviously very instant. Detail to the piece is quite low considering the complexity of the depiction and yet the hairwork on the reverse is quite delicate, with the Albert curl and gold wire cipher. This is set in a low-grade pendant and underneath glass, so what can we make of it?

Miniatures 12.10.2010
18th Century Mourning MIniature with Contemporary Woman

Property of a Lady: 18th Century Costume, Mourning and Art in a Neoclassical Miniature

This piece is pained on ivory, measured 1.75 (4.3cm) by 2.25 (6.8cm) inches (loop excluded), set in rose gold. We have a young woman looking up to the cherub carrying the scroll with the writing ‘TO BLISS’, behind her is the willow (gief) and to the distance are the cypress trees pointing their way towards the heavens. In front, we have urn resting on a plinth with ‘SACRED TO THE BEST OF FRIENDS’. All this is painted in hushed sepia tones, except for the cherub and female. On the reverse, we have tightly woven hairwork.

Lockets 09.10.2010
Le Plus Loin Le Plus Serre Mourning Pendant

The Further the Distance the Tighter the Knot; Eternity and Romantic Symbolism on a French Sepia Miniature

Symbolism and beauty are two words to describe this French piece. The two birds (winged souls) tying together the knot of eternity and love as the ship is sailing away from the castle on top of a cliff face. The boat can be taken as a literal interpretation of sentimental distance, or as the passage of a soul towards the afterlife, however as the boat shows its passage towards the horizon, then one can expect that the symbolism falls into the latter. When combined with the eternity knot, the sentiment of love shows a love forever unbroken despite any figurative distance.

Funeralia 07.07.2010
Hairwork Frame and Miniature Portrait 18th Century

Spotlight On: 18th Century Portrait and Hairwork Frame

Hairwork memorials can come in many different forms, sometimes as mourning pieces and sometimes as love tokens. This, dating from…

Miniatures 27.06.2010

Spotlight On: John Wood Dodge Miniature

18K solid case and clasp fittings elaborately engraved and enameled, housing portrait of (yet) unknown sitter of watercolor on ivory…

Miniatures 11.05.2010

Spotlight On: Nelson Miniature

Horatio Nelson’s death in 1805 during the Battle of Trafalgar was a landmark in the Napoleonic Wars and also for…

Miniatures 24.04.2010
Minature Lord H

Spotlight On: Portrait Miniature

To celebrate my birthday, I think it’s only fitting that we look back at a wonderful piece of a gentlemen…

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Miniatures 17.03.2010

The Georgian Eye

Of the more unusual sentimental portraits to come from the late 18th Century (and to survive into the early 19th…