Extremely rare element in micro mosaic in the unusual shape of a half-moon figuring a running fox on a black background. The singularity of this piece is given by the exceptionally dynamic and naturalistic portrayal of the image, in sharp contrast with the recurring, static iconography of the micro mosaic art of 19th century. Its execution involves a technical improvement, which study first began in 18th century and final development was attributed to the Roman Antonio Aguatti around mid-18th century: the malmischiato (literally, badly or poorly mixed), namely the fusion, within an unique glass paste rod, of different colors and fades, for obtaining irregularly shaped micro tesserae – more suitable for depicting plant and animal life – and an important variety of shades. This technical innovation is well expressed here in the depiction of the fox fur, where curve-shaped tiles have been employed to portray the softness of the animal pelt. Our anonymous micro mosaicist went even beyond by making the reflection of the light in the fox’s eye with an infinitesimal white tile. The micro mosaic is inlayed in an avventurina glass mount.
Rome, 19th century
– “Ricordi in micromosaico – Vedute e paesaggi per i viaggiatori del Grand Tour”, by Chiara Stefani, De Luca Editori d’Arte, 2011, Roma
Size of the micro mosaic mount included: 2,6 x 1,7 cm
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