Saturday, August 24, 2013

6. Tiffany and Faberge and the Met

Greetings from the Met in New York - tonight's posting is bought to you by the houses of Faberge and Tiffany ( and others ... ) ...

Two of the most exciting galleries - if you could ever make a decision like that !!! - were the Tiffany and Faberge collections ...

Magnolias and Irises - 1908 - Louis Comfort Tiffany

Louis Comfort Tiffany (February 18, 1848 – January 17, 1933) was an American artist and designer who worked in the decorative arts and is best known for his work in stained glass. He is the American artist most associated with the Art Nouveau and Aesthetic movements. 

Dogwood - 1915 - L.C.Tiffany

Tiffany designed stained glass windows and lamps, glass mosaics, blown glass, ceramics, jewellery, enamels and metalwork.
 Chandelier and Lamps - L.C.Tiffany
Autumn Landscape - 1923 - Attributed to Agnes Northrop who was employed by the Tiffany Workshop

View of Oyster Bay - 1908 - L.C.Tiffany

Grapevine Panels - 1905 - L.C.Tiffany

Then I wandered into the Faberge collection ...

The House of Fabergé is a jewellery firm founded in 1842 in St. Petergberg, Imperial Russia by Gustav Faberge,  Gustav was followed by his son  Peter Carl Faberge, until the firm was nationalised by the Bolsheviks in 1918. In 1924, Peter Carl's son Alexander with his half-brother Eugène opened Faberge et Cie in Paris, making similar jewellery items, but adding the city to their rival firm's trademark as "FABERGÉ, PARIS". In 1937, the brand name "Fabergé" was sold and then re-sold in 1964 to cosmetics company Rayette Inc., which changed its name to Rayette-Fabergé Inc. As the name was resold more times, Faberge companies (such as Faberge Inc. ) launched clothing lines, the cologne Brut (which became the best-selling cologne at the time), the perfume Babe, hair products, and undertook film production.
Cigarette Case

The firm has been famous for designing elaborate jewel-encrusted Faberge eggs for the Russian Tsars and a range of other work of high quality and intricate details.

The Imperial Easter Eggs ... In 1885, Tsar Alexander III commissioned the House of Fabergé to make an Easter egg as a gift for his wife, the Empress Maria Fedrovna. Its "shell" is enamelled on gold to represent a normal hen’s egg. This pulls apart to reveal a gold yolk, which in turn opens to produce a gold chicken that also opens to reveal a replica of the Imperial Crown from which a miniature ruby egg was suspended. Although the Crown and the miniature egg have been lost, the rest of the hen Egg - as it is known - is now in the collection of Victor Vekselberg.

Imperial Easter Egg

The tradition of the Tsar giving his Empress a surprise Easter egg by Carl Fabergé continued. From 1887, it appears that Carl Fabergé was given complete freedom as to the design of the Imperial Easter eggs as they became more elaborate. According to the Fabergé Family tradition, not even the Tsar knew what egg form they would take: the only stipulation was that each one should contain a surprise.

Imperial Easter Egg
The House of Fabergé completed 54 Imperial eggs for Alexander III to present to his Empress and for Nicholas II to present to his mother, the Dowager Empress Maria Fedorovna and his wife the Empress Alexandra Fedorovna. Of these, 42 have survived. The egg for 1917 was never completed, but has been discovered in recent years.


More from the Met tomorrow ...
I hope you are enjoying this brief encounter - through my eyes
with this most wonderful Museum ...