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Relief - Unknown Man

Unknown Man

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    19th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Andras, Catherine, born 1775 - died 1860 (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:


  • Credit Line:

    Rupert Gunnis Bequest

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

During the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, low relief portraits in wax became popular in Britain and they were often exhibited at the Royal Academy, the Society of Artists and elsewhere. Waxes were used in a similar way to prints and medals, in order to disseminate the image of the sitter, or, like miniature paintings or silhouettes as portable mementoes.

The popularity of wax portraits was in part driven by their links with other types of portrait manufacture such as ceramic medallions.

The process of making a portrait in wax would begin with a model in plasticine or soft wax which would be worked using ivory or wooden tools in much the same way as a model in clay. A plaster mould would then be made and molten wax poured into it. The relief would be hand-finished by the artist.

Catherine Andras was appointed Modeller in Wax to Queen Charlotte in 1802. The identity of the sitter is unknown.

Physical description

Wax relief.

Place of Origin

England (made)


19th century (made)


Andras, Catherine, born 1775 - died 1860 (maker)

Materials and Techniques


Object history note

Rupert Gunnis Bequest.

Descriptive line

Wax, English, by Catherine Andras (1775-1860), 19th century



Subjects depicted





Sculpture Collection

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