Very elegant and rare pair of amethyst Medici vases. They consist of two gilded bronze pedestal bases, one adorned with diamond patterns and the other finely sculpted with foliage. The base supports the glass which is decorated with banding, friezes of palmettes, a garland of blue flowers, and multicolored bouquets of roses. The bodies are decorated with two medallions depicting animal scenes whose subjects are drawn from the Fables of La Fontaine. The decor is done in the same style as Jean-Baptiste Desvignes.
Dim: W: 4,5 in – D: 4,5in – H: 7,7in.
Dim: L:11,5cm, P:11,5cm, H:19,5cm.
Differences on the bases.
In overall very good condition, with light wear to the gilding.
By 1820, technological discoveries brought new features to opaline objects. During this time, Jean-Baptiste Desvignes found a way to paint on opaline crystal and glass. He used only vegetable-based colors that he affixed to the opaline crystal. The tones, always matte, were limited to dark blue and red. The gilding dominated, using forms of linear palmettes, flowers, and garland patterns. Desvignes decorated in Gothic style as well as created small, illustrative scenes inspired by the fables of La Fontaine, delicately colored in blue, soft green, ocher, purple, and gold or silver dots. The sets by Jean-Baptiste Desvignes ran from 1820 until approximately 1826. Afterward, his wife and his two collaborators, Vincent and Blancheron, continued using the same formulas and motifs to decorate opal that came primarily, it seems, from the Brecy crystal manufacturer, founded in 1827.
Bibliography: Y. Amic, L’opaline francaise au XIXeme siècle, Paris, 1952, ed. Gründ. Edith Mannoni, Opalines, Paris, Editions Ch. Massin, s. d., p. 31.