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Enquiry from Online Galleries regarding "A George III giltwood Robert Adam period borderglass mirror"
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Look at what I found on the Online Galleries website!
This one wasn't originally made as plain as it is now. Slots on the back at top and bottom tell us that it originally had “dressing” i.e. swags of harebells and an urn, or similar. The dressing has often been lost over the years and whether they were made plain or became plain doesn't really seem to have an effect on value. (Although unoriginal later dressing seems to detract from value). Just to complicate matters a little, Adam Bowett a leading furniture historian, has suggested that the slots may have been provided but not necessarily always used.
This style of frame having been made for so many years means that there are a lot of more recent nasty examples around. Heavy, thick detailing, often made from composition rather than wood, gold paint, that sort of thing; so care needs to be taken when choosing one.
This example is a little jewel of late 18th century neo-classicism, expressing in miniature the excitement of rediscovering the Classical World's decorative language. Robert Adam - “Bob the Roman” and James Stuart - “Athenian Stuart” were the two men who probably did the most to promote the new style in Britain. Of the two Adam was the more commercially successful (though he also had some disasters) and whose name is now synonymous with the style, but I feel a twinge of guilt whenever typing “in the manner of Robert Adam” that James Stuart has been somewhat overlooked by posterity.
[There is a good book about Stuart – James “Athenian” Stuart, The Rediscovery of Antiquity edited by Susan Weber Soros.]
[BTW, Most of these borderglass mirrors can be hung vertically or horizontally.]
|Height||89.00 cm||(35.04 inches)|
|Width||59.00 cm||(23.23 inches)|