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The Wagner Girdle

  • Object:

    Girdle

  • Place of origin:

    England (made)
    London (made)

  • Date:

    1893-1896 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Fisher, Alexander, born 1864 - died 1936 (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Steel with gold inlay, set with citrines, amethysts, opals, moonstones, coral, stained chalcedony and turquois , and mounted with enamelled plaques

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Mrs O. E. Bostock and Mr Ivan Horniman

  • Museum number:

    M.20&:1 to 8-1943

  • Gallery location:

    Jewellery, Rooms 91 to 93, The William and Judith Bollinger Gallery, case 27, shelf B []

Alexander Fisher designed and produced the Wagner Girdle between 1893 and 1896. It is made of steel set with stones and enamel plaques. The plaques show scenes from Wagner's operas. From left to right they are the death of Tristan, Lohengrin, Siegmund and Siegelinde, the Rhine Maidens, Fafner, Tannhauser, Tristan and Isolde with the love potion.
Fisher was an enameller and teacher who specialised in painted enamel. He revived this type of enamelling after attending lectures given in London in the mid-1880s by Louis Dalpayrat of the Sèvres porcelain factory. He developed his enamelling techniques as a student in Paris. Here he experimented by using layers of different translucent colours, highlighted with glinting strips of metal foil beneath the surface. His work became known in London through the Arts and Crafts Exhibition Society and through his teaching.

Physical description

Steel with gold inlay, set with citrines, amethysts, opals, moonstones, coral, stained chalcedony and turquoise and with enamelled plaques depicting scenes from Wagner's operas. Consisting of a belt of eleven links alternately of openwork and set with enamelled plaques. In order to expand the belt to a usable size, extra panels were supplied.

Place of Origin

England (made)
London (made)

Date

1893-1896 (made)

Artist/maker

Fisher, Alexander, born 1864 - died 1936 (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Steel with gold inlay, set with citrines, amethysts, opals, moonstones, coral, stained chalcedony and turquois , and mounted with enamelled plaques

Marks and inscriptions

Inscribed on the back of the buckle sections with two short quotations from the German libretto of Wagner's Tristan und Isolde

Dimensions

Height: 9.7 cm, Width: 57.3 cm, Depth: 2.1 cm

Object history note

Made for Mrs Emslie J. Horniman.

Descriptive line

Girdle, 'The Wagner Girdle', by Alexander Fisher, steel, gold, enamel and gemstones, England, 1893-1896.

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

Joyasde del Modernismo Artista a la Vanguardia. Barcelona: Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya. p. 88, no. 47. ISBN 9788480432252

Materials

Steel; Enamel; Citrine; Gold; Amethyst; Opal; Moonstone; Coral; Chalcedony; Turquoise

Techniques

Enamelling

Subjects depicted

Women; Men; Mythology

Categories

Images Online; Metalwork; Jewellery; Accessories; Europeana Fashion Project

Collection

Metalwork Collection

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