A SMALL COLLECTION OF ANTIQUE SILVER
AND OBJECTS OF VERTU
THE WHAT IS? SILVER DICTIONARY

PLIQUE--JOUR

Plique--jour is a French term indicating a vitreous enamelling technique where the enamel is applied in cells, similar to cloisonn, but with no backing in the final product, so light can shine through the transparent or translucent enamel.
It is in effect a miniature version of stained-glass and is considered very challenging technically: high time consumption with a high failure rate. The technique is similar to that of cloisonn, but using a temporary backing that after firing is dissolved by acid or rubbed away.
plique--jour technique in jewellery plique--jour technique in jewellery
Originally developed in the Byzantine Empire in 6th century AD, the plique--jour technique was adopted by Kievan Russia but was lost after the crushing Mongol invasion in the 13th century.
The technique was adopted also in Western Europe and the French term appears in inventories from the 14th century onwards. A full description of the process is illustrated in the Treatises of Benvenuto Cellini on Goldsmithing and Sculpture of 1568.
The technique was revived in the late 19th century movement of revivalist jewellery, and became especially popular in Russia and Scandinavia. Works by Pavel Ovchinikov, Ivan Khlebnikov, and some masters working for Faberge are real masterpieces of plique--jour. Norwegian jewellers included David Andersen and J. Tostrup in Oslo, and Martin Hummer in Bergen. Art nouveau artists such as Ren Lalique and other French and German artists used plique--jour in small jewellery
spoon in plique--jour technique
spoon in plique--jour technique
plique--jour technique
plique--jour technique plique--jour technique


English home page
This is a page of 'The What is? Silver Dictionary' of A Small Collection of Antique Silver and Objects of vertu, a 1500 pages richly illustrated website offering all you need to know about antique silver, sterling silver, silverplate, Sheffield plate, electroplate silver, silverware, flatware, tea services and tea complements, marks and hallmarks, articles, books, auction catalogs, famous silversmiths (Tiffany, Gorham, Jensen, Elkington), history, oddities ...
HOME - SITE MAP - SILVER DICTIONARY - COOKIES CONSENT AND PRIVACY