Exquisite Antique Hand Painted & Signed Enamel 18K Bracelet, French c. 1850
Antique French 18K bracelet with a hand painted enamel scene of cherubs, signed by Ravel.Machin in the lower left of the panel. This early to mid 19th century bracelet is quite rare. The enamel is perfect. The scene of the cherubs playing is very detailed and intricately done. The enamel panel sits within a black bordered frame which has an elaborate design in the four corners. The bracelet measures 7 inches in the interior, and is 1 inch wide. The bracelet opens up wide with two hinges, for ease of putting on and taking off. The clasp is original and has a safety chain. Upon close examination, the back (under one's wrist) of the 18K gold bracelet shows scratches and very small dents (consistent with the age of this piece - at least 170 years old). See untouched photos. Importantly however, the top of this bracelet, which is obviously the visible portion, is pristine!
Notes from the archives:
After the French revolution and the later period of war with England, the rational and nuanced enlightenment for change in political and social norms had an impact also in the aesthetics and subject matter of painting and related arts.
Artists were less concerned with the old master mentality of the 1750's. They no longer needed sponsors for works of art. Instead they produced works immediately saleable and appealing to Europe's growing merchant class. A neo-classicism arose that had less to do with biblical or classic stories and more to do with allegories portrayed as though they were classic. Thus arose the work of Jacques Louis David and Jean-Auguste Dominique Ingres with their neo-historic interpretations of the French spirit and history. Later Bouguereau also would carry this type of work into the early 1900's.
So too by the mid 19th century enamelists such as Ravel.Machin would produce exquisite depictions of neo classic settings with romantic implications. And what could be more romantic than cupids rollicking with the charming imagery of playful farm animals. Our bracelet is a product of these forces.
Please note our model has a medium to large wrist size.
Today, a preponderance of jewelry is machine made in large factories around the world with abundant and obvious suspensions as to its enduring qualities using not only inferior stones, but also man made stones and treated stones utilizing artificial substances. Alternatively, this rare antique enamel bracelet displays wonderful hand painted enamel by a consummate artist working under high power magnification using the tiniest of brushes this had to have required months to complete. What resulted and survives to this day is an unforgettable tour de force of mid-nineteenth century jeweled art.
All items sold are accompanied by a detailed Statement of Value by our gemologist, as well as all original gemological documentation, if specified in the listing. As always, we guarantee all pieces to be exactly as represented. Each piece of jewelry arrives in a gift-wrapped fine presentation box.
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