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Incense burner
  • Incense burner
    Barbedienne, Ferdinand, born 1810 - died 1892
  • Enlarge image

Incense burner

  • Place of origin:

    Paris (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1855 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Barbedienne, Ferdinand, born 1810 - died 1892 (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Oxidised silver

  • Museum number:

    2707 to C-1856

  • Gallery location:

    Silver, Room 67, The Whiteley Galleries, case 3, shelf 1 []

When this design was shown at the 1862 International Exhibition in London, J. B. Waring commented "A good example of that particular development of the Greek style which has distinguished the ornamental designs of France for the last few years called 'Neo-Grec'". It also features distinct elements of Islamic design, then known as "Moorish" which was considered particularly suitable for smoking rooms and implements, and (unsuprisingly) for Turkish Baths. The pattern was popular for many years. It was first shown by Barbedienne at the 1855 Paris Exhibition, where he won a Grand Medal of Honour, and from where the Museum bought this example for £48. The incense burner is made of metal plated in silver and oxidised. Oxidisation involved darkening the silver. This was done with a sulphide (such as ammonium sulphide), rather than with oxygen, and was thought to be beneficial because sculptural contrasts stood out much more clearly.

Physical description

Incense burner in metal, plated with 'oxidised' silver: in the form of a vase, with cover and two handles resting on a circular salver which is supported on a stand with four tiger's heads as feet; arabesque decoration of oriental character.

Place of Origin

Paris (made)

Date

ca. 1855 (made)

Artist/maker

Barbedienne, Ferdinand, born 1810 - died 1892 (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Oxidised silver

Dimensions

Height: 59 cm Base to top of burner (not including the chain links), Diameter: 29.3 cm Across the top of the circular base plate, Width: 23.5 cm Across the centre of the rectangular base section, Width: 23.2 cm Across the centre of the rectangular base section

Object history note

Bought from Paris 1855 Exhibition for £48.
When this design was shown at the 1862 International Exhibition in London, J. B. Waring commented "A good example of that particular development of the Greek style which has distinguished the ornamental designs of France for the last few years called 'Neo-Grec'". It also features distinct elements of Islamic design, then known as "Moorish": this was considered particularly suitable for smoking rooms and implements, and (unsuprisingly) for Turkish Baths. The pattern was lastingly popular. It was first shown by Barbedienne at the 1855 Paris Exhibition, where he won a Grand Medal of Honour, and from where the Museum bought this example for £48.

Napoleon and Victoria Exhibition RF.2007/800

Descriptive line

Incense burner with stand, made by Ferdinand Barbédienne, Paris, ca. 1855

Labels and date

INCENSE BURNER
Manufacturer, Ferdinand Barbedienne (1810-1892)
Paris, about 1855
Metal plated with "oxidised" silver

2707-1856

This incense burner was bought for £48 from the Paris 1855 Exhibition at which Barbédienne was awarded a Grand Medal of Honour. The design was shown again in London in 1862 when J.B. Waring commended the vase as 'a good example of that particular development of the Greek style which has distinguished the ornamental designs of France for the last few years called "Neo-Grec."' (Masterpieces of industrial art and sculpture at the International Exhibition 1862). However, while the stand is neo-grec, the incense burner derives from a middle eastern source. [1987-2006]

Materials

Silver; Metal

Techniques

Oxidation; Plating

Categories

Metalwork

Collection

Metalwork Collection

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