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Casket (cassetta)

Date:
late 15th century
Culture:
Italian, Ferrara
Medium:
Molded gesso on partly gilt wood (pastiglia)
Dimensions:
3 1/8 × 4 1/8 × 6 3/8 in. (7.9 × 10.5 × 16.2 cm)
Classification:
Woodwork-Furniture
Credit Line:
Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917
Accession Number:
17.190.589
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 500
Molded pastiglia, a composition consisting of either gesso or pulverized white lead with an egg binder to which musk was added, was applied to the surface of small caskets and deliberately left ungilt and unpainted, so that the relief exuded a musky scent. The technique was introduced to Ferrarese craftsmen at the end of the 1440s by a French immigrant, Carlo di Monlione.
J. Pierpont Morgan (until 1917; to MMA)
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