Blog Posts tagged with Objets d'Art

This incredible pietre dure plaque is comprised of numerous hardstones intricately inlaid to create a "painting of stone."

Beauty Set In Stone: The Art of Pietre Dure

Posted: April 22, 2013 16:10 Last Updated: | Bill Rau

Pietre dure is one of the oldest decorative arts. With a meticulous eye and steady hand, a master of this hardstone inlay technique can literally “paint” a picture in stone. The art form developed in ancient Rome in the 4th century where the technique was known as opus sectile (“carved and cut work”). Much like mosaic, this new process utilized larger sections of materials such as marble and glass inlaid into floors and walls to compose an image or decorative pattern. After the fall of the Roman Empire, the technique was brought to Byzantium, where it was used to grace the interiors ...


This resplendent Viennese charger is inset with nine intricately engraved panels of rock crystal

From Myth to Masterpiece: Viennese Rock Crystal

Posted: January 30, 2012 08:12 Last Updated: | Bill Rau

Australian aborigines called it the "stone of light" and the Celts believed its prismatic properties linked it to the sun. Even the fortuneteller's rudimentary crystal ball was originally crafted of the mysteriously alluring mineral we refer to today as rock crystal. Rock crystal, or clear quartz, has been revered by nearly every ancient culture in history. It's clear, ice-like appearance, enhanced by light refracting fissures gave the mineral an air of mystique that carried on well into the Renaissance. The mineral's innate beauty piqued the interest of 14th-century European royals and...


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