19th Century Micro Mosaic

REF: 6006

19th Century Micro Mosaic

REF: 6006

19th century micro mosaic tablet with five oval panels with Roman views, very fine tesserae, small briquettes of glass.

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  • Height 11.43 cm / 4 12"
  • Width 15.875 cm / 6 12"
  • Depth 2.5 cm / 1"

Category

  • Period 1850-1899
  • Year c. 1890
  • Country England
  • Provenance Micro mosaics were popular purchases by visitors on the Grand Tour, easily portable, and often taken home to set into an object there. Typical scenes were landscapes of Roman views, rarely of any artistic originality, and the micro mosaics were small panels used to inset into furniture or onto snuffboxes and similar objects, or for jewellery. Religious subjects were copied from paintings. The very smallest mosaic pieces come from works from the period between the late 18th century and the end of the 19th. Fortunato Pio Castellani (1794–1865) expanded the range of subjects in his work in the "archaeological style", copying Roman and Early Christian wall-mosaics. It was even imitated by porcelain painters, who painted faint lines across their work to suggest the edges of tesserae.