Rare Antique French Portrait Miniature, Artist Signed Kiln-fired Enamel of Marie-Antoinette on Tortoise Shell Snuff Box
Rare Antique French Portrait Miniature, Artist Signed Kiln-fired Enamel of Marie-Antoinette on Tortoise Shell Snuff Box
Rare Antique French Portrait Miniature, Artist Signed Kiln-fired Enamel of Marie-Antoinette on Tortoise Shell Snuff Box
Rare Antique French Portrait Miniature, Artist Signed Kiln-fired Enamel of Marie-Antoinette on Tortoise Shell Snuff Box
Rare Antique French Portrait Miniature, Artist Signed Kiln-fired Enamel of Marie-Antoinette on Tortoise Shell Snuff Box
Rare Antique French Portrait Miniature, Artist Signed Kiln-fired Enamel of Marie-Antoinette on Tortoise Shell Snuff Box
Rare Antique French Portrait Miniature, Artist Signed Kiln-fired Enamel of Marie-Antoinette on Tortoise Shell Snuff Box
Rare Antique French Portrait Miniature, Artist Signed Kiln-fired Enamel of Marie-Antoinette on Tortoise Shell Snuff Box
Rare Antique French Portrait Miniature, Artist Signed Kiln-fired Enamel of Marie-Antoinette on Tortoise Shell Snuff Box

Rare Antique French Portrait Miniature, Artist Signed Kiln-fired Enamel of Marie-Antoinette on Tortoise Shell Snuff Box

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Fabulous French kiln-fired enamel portrait on copper plaque, signed by the artist, "M. Louvet", incorporating the pale grisaille in portrait silhouette against a darker but rich background, a little foil worked into her hair ribbon's bow and her gown which reveals the signature at her shoulder. I do believe this is Marie-Antoinette, a likeness in her nose and profile. Perhaps done in early 1800s, though I haven't been successful locating an earlier original profile portrait of her after which this enamelist might have worked. Beautifully crafted, this is truly the most arduous of methods, a skill that takes decades of apprenticeship to achieve this outcome. Porcelain powders are worked on a copper or sometimes silver plaque, then kiln-fired to melt into a glassine finish, but those powders are all shades of mauve to blue to mud, and one works by remembering what each will become once melted. Tremendous skill, most famously by artisans of Limoges, but also Sevres and Bresse, France.  That said, I've been unable to find reference easily for this artist. The enamel portrait is mounted on a beautiful tortoise shell snuff or patch box, and it remains in stunningly beautiful condition as well. Full measurements noted on our photos. 

Very good to excellent condition for age and type, I see one bug bite on the tortoise shell, which I've marked for your review, and no abrasions or imperfections, no cracks on the fabulous enamel portrait. A remarkable work of art, this. 

IMPORTANT NOTE regarding antique tortoise shell or ivory: We are great supporters of protection for endangered species in our modern world. We never buy or sell anything 100 years or newer; we donate to anti-poaching organizations; we don't hunt; we conserve in ways that impact global warming (we're totally solar at home), knowing those measures also protect the animals in the wild today. We also recognize the vast cultural history we preserve with our care and reverence for these antique objects, and agree with CITES that objects over 100 years of age have nothing whatsoever to do with species depletion in our current world. 

Our offering exceeds the age limitation of "more than 100 years of age", and is well within the exemption for CITES regulation. If imported, met the CITES regulation. This item will be handled and shipped from our Utah business, and is not available for shipment internationally, nor within the USA to California, NY, Nevada, Hawaii, New Jersey, Oregon, Washington if it contains ivory, sorry. Please see our small print for more details.