Champagne Flora Mirror
Reverse painting on glass is an ancient technique. Examples of work have been found in Assyrian and Phoenician civilisations. Transmitted by Early Christian tradition, it has undergone various revivals in the history of glass - Italy during the 14/16th Centuries, Holland and Spain during the 17th and 18th Centuries and in France, England and the United States in the 18th Century.
The European term for the technique is Verre-églomisé and owes its name to Jean-Baptiste Glomy (d.1786), a French picture framer who used the process in glass mounts. The method almost always involves the use of gold or silver leaf that is glued to the surface of the glass with either gelatine or albumen (egg white). A design is then scratched through the metal leaf and backed with paint that shows through the gold when viewed from the front. it is the reverse of painting on board or canvas, with verre églomisé it is the detail that is applied first.
There are now very few centres in the world where this highly skilled work is carried on commercially. In Peru the 'mysteries' of the craft are still being handed down through the generations and where this ancient skill is now undergoing a revival.
W 70.5cm H 100 cm