Design for a Brooch with a Female Figure and a White Dove

Anonymous, French, 19th century French

Not on view

Drawing with a design for a brooch, designed around 1900, part of an album of drawings by various artists for individual pieces of jewelry, containing a variety of designs in the Art Nouveau style of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, as well as some pieces in historic period styles. The brooch in the drawing consists of a round shell-like frame of cream color with semi-abstract branches, executed with shades of brown, red and green, containing the upper part of a female figure, standing with her back to the viewer, her hands pulling her long hair up, and her head turning towards the viewer. The frame is flanked above by a round white pearl, and two green scrolling motifs to its sides, which hold a thin chain from which the brooch hangs. On the lower part of the shell frame, under the female body, is a white dove with the wings slightly opened to form an X-shape. This design reveals the aesthetic of late Art Nouveau jewelry style, designed, among others, by Rene Lalique, which drew inspiration from antiquity and japonism, abandoning the exclusive use traditional precious stones in the manufacture of jewels, and using, instead, a combination of gold, gemstones, semi-precious stones, mother-of-pearl, ivory and horn, enamel, and glass, to create colorful, powerful, and sinuous designs, often presenting animal and other figurative motifs.

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