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Necklace

  • Place of origin:

    Rome (made)

  • Date:

    1810 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Aguatti, Antonio (made)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Mosaics, cut blue glass, and moulded gold.

  • Credit Line:

    The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Collection on loan to the Victoria and Albert Museum, London

  • Museum number:

    LOAN:GILBERT.156:1, 2-2008

  • Gallery location:

    Gold, Silver and Mosaics, Room 72, The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Galleries, case 6, shelf 5 []

These fine mosaic landscapes show how subtle and painterly an effect could be achieved with glass tesserae. The scenes are in the style of Claude Lorraine (1600-82), and the central panel is based on his painting Landscape with the Father of Psyche Sacrificing to Apollo.

The term 'micromosaic' is used to describe mosaics made of the smallest glass pieces. Some micromosaics contain more than 5000 pieces per square inch. The earliest attempts at micromosaic revealed visible joins between the pieces (known as tesserae) and a lack of perspective. Later artists such as Antonio Aguatti made huge advances in micromosaic technique, resulting in renderings that were truer to life. Glass micromosaic technique developed in the 18th century, in the Vatican Mosaic Workshop in Rome, where they still undertake restoration work today.

Sir Arthur Gilbert and his wife Rosalinde formed one of the world's great decorative art collections, including silver, mosaics, enamelled portrait miniatures and gold boxes. Arthur Gilbert donated his extraordinary collection to Britain in 1996.

Physical description

Necklace composed of nine oval Roman mosaic plaques with landscapes of the Campagna and one of a spaniel on the clasp, all are set in blue glass and mounted in plain gold filets.

Place of Origin

Rome (made)

Date

1810 (made)

Artist/maker

Aguatti, Antonio (made)

Materials and Techniques

Mosaics, cut blue glass, and moulded gold.

Dimensions

Length: 46 cm

Object history note

Provenance: Hancocks and Co., London, 1974.

Descriptive line

Necklace of ten micromosaics of landscapes, attributed to Antonio Aguatti, Rome ca.1810.

Labels and date

5. Necklace with landscapes
About 1810

Rome, Italy; central panel inspired by Claude Lorraine, Landscape with the Father of Psyche Sacrificing to Apollo (1662–63)
Glass micromosaic set in blue glass, and gold
Museum no. Loan:Gilbert.156:1-2008 [16/11/2016]

Materials

Glass; Gold; Material

Techniques

Cut; Micromosaic; Moulding; Technique

Collection

Metalwork Collection

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