Ancient Glass Blog of The Allaire Collection

EGYPTIAN MOSAIC IBIS GLASS INLAY

Posted in Uncategorized by Allaire Collection of Glass on October 26, 2012

EGYPTIAN MOSAIC IBIS INLAY of Nico F. Bijnsdorp

NFB 300 EGYPTIAN MOSAIC IBIS GLASS INLAY

NFB 300 EGYPTIAN MOSAIC IBIS GLASS INLAY

H = 1.6 cm. L = 2.9 cm. Th. = 3-4 mm. W = 5 gr.

Date: Ptolemaic-Roman, first century BC – first century AD. Egyptian.

Condition: Intact. Few air bubbles burst at surface. Some weathering.

Technique: Assembled from cold, prefabricated mosaic composite bars and fused. One side flat and polished. Vertical sides unworked.

Description: Section of a rectangular mosaic composite bar. Semi-translucent turquoise ground with the figure of the Egyptian deity Thoth as IBIS, walking on opaque brick-red baseline. The Ibis composed of composite canes: beak, neck, lower legs, feet and tail as well as outlines of body, wings and upper legs are “black” (see Remarks). Body, feathers, tail and upper legs are opaque white. The black eye encircled by opaque brick-red and opaque light green rings. Longitudinal intersection of the beak in opaque light green.

Remarks: When the inlay is put under strong light, the “black” beak, neck, lower legs, feet and tail appear to be translucent amethyst whereas the outlines of body and wings appear to be translucent light blue. The (oft intricate) designs in mosaic composite bars and canes are fabricated by bundling and fusing cold, prefabricated rods into the desired pattern, followed by pulling the bar or cane outward, thus lengthening it and simultaneously miniaturizing the depiction. The elongated bar can be sliced into thin plaques by sawing, clipping, snapping or otherwise. The slices can be used as decoration in furniture and in glass vessels.

Provenance: Old French collection, 1950’s.

References: Christie’s 26 April 2012, The Groppi Collection, Nos. 6, 9 and 14., Christie’s 7 July 1993, The Groppi Collection (Per-Neb), Nos. 152 and 137., Ettinghausen 1962, The Freer Gallery of Art, No. 46., Stern 1994, The Ernesto Wolf Collection, No. 122.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: