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Mirror Frame

Mirror Frame

  • Place of origin:

    London (made)

  • Date:

    1868 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Giovanni Franchi and Son (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Electroformed copper, electroplated with silver

  • Museum number:

    REPRO.1868-136

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This mirror frame was bought by the Museum in 1868 from Giovanni Franchi and Son of Clerkenwell, London. It is an electrotype copy of a silver version dating from around 1660 belonging to Knole House in Kent. It was bought with 23 items copied from the house that served as a design source for students in the government schools of design under the aegis of the Department of Science and Art.

The Museum bought electrotypes as part of its growing collection of reproductions. This collection enabled students to look closely at both modern and historic objects that were otherwise inaccessible. Multiple copies of objects allowed many schools to study them at once. Electrotypes provided the same function as the Museum’s collection of plaster casts. the 19th century art critic, Charles Eastlake, felt electrotypes were more instructive than contemporary silver productions: '... so far as the interests of art are concerned it is better to possess a copper-gilt flagon of a good design than a modern trophy cup of twice its weight in gold.'

Place of Origin

London (made)

Date

1868 (made)

Artist/maker

Giovanni Franchi and Son (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Electroformed copper, electroplated with silver

Marks and inscriptions

Unmarked

Object history note

This mirror frame was bought by the Museum in 1868 from Giovanni Franchi and Son of Clerkenwell, London. It is an electrotype copy of a silver version dating from around 1660 belonging to Knole House in Kent. It was bought with 23 items copied from the house that served as a design source for students in the government schools of design under the aegis of the Department of Science and Art.

Descriptive line

Electrotype, octagonal

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Glanville, Philippa, ed., Silver, Victora and Albert Museum, London, 1996, pp. 60-1
John Culme, The Directory of Gold and Silversmiths, Jewellers and Allied Traders 1838-1914, Antique Collectors' Club, Woodbridge, 1987, p. 164

Materials

Copper; Silver

Techniques

Electrotyping; Electroforming

Categories

Furniture; Household objects; Metalwork

Collection

Metalwork Collection

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