Antique French Venetian Pareclose Mirror circa 1890 (28"w x 44 1/2"h)
The unique quality of an antique Venetian mirror circa 1890 comes from its use of an all mirror glass construction without a visible wooden frame. The bounce of light off of the water in the Venetian lagoon is eternally enchanting and continues to influence all aspects of Venetian design. This particular mirror demonstrates the power Venice has wielded since the 1500's in the creation of mirrors. After France winkled out the puzzle of mirror manufacturing in the late 1600's every wealthy person in the known world desired mirrors for their homes as it was a demonstration of economic superiority to feature mirrors in an interior. The most famous mirrored interior in the world remains the Hall of Mirrors at the Palace of Versailles in France where the dazzle of thousands of lit candles reflected in the walls of mirror glass stunned the crowd. This antique French mirror is not only octagonal in shape it is also "à pareclose" meaning the central mirror plate reflective expanse is increased by the use of additional mirrors placed around the perimeter. This technique developed before the production of single large mirror plates was feasible and allowed larger areas to be covered with mirror glass. The Venetians have always been famous for their etched glass located on the reverse side done in a floral pattern and it was easy for the French to adopt this same decorative motif in their own versions of Venetian mirrors. Please be sure to enlarge and zoom on the individual photographs and notice the elaborate decoration on each of the individual components that create the entire mirror. The bevel on the octagon central plate is surrounded by successive layers of framing with each of the separate pieces manipulated by cutting, etching, polishing or otherwise increasing the sparkling and glittering effect to create a sense of movement reminiscent of light upon water. The crest of the mirror is similarly extravagant with scrolls, flourishes and ribbons set in a symmetrical format.
WIDTH: 28 in | HEIGHT: 44½ in | DEPTH: 3 in
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