A French Belle Epoque 18 karat gold and platinum bracelet with diamonds designed by Lucien Gautrait for Leon Gariod. The bracelet has 5 old European-cut diamonds with an approximate total weight of 0.90 carat set into 6 openwork wheat- and foliate-decorated plaque links. The 3 larger links are enameled and heavily decorated.
The "Fish" Box by Alfred Daguet. This rare and stunning French Art Nouveau box is decorated with red enamel surrounding the fish swimming upon the top of the box. The fish''s fins are fully open displaying this creature''s innate beauty.Alfred-Louis-Achille Daguet (Paris, 1875-1942) is famed for his exquisite desk boxes which transform bronze, copper and glass into flowing, organic examples of the Art Nouveau style. Among colleagues as diverse Odilon Redon, the proto-surrealist, and Thomas Eakins, a father of American realism, Daguet studied painting under Jean-Léon Gérôme, the towering academician and outspoken adversary of everything Impressionist. Influenced by Gerôme''s compositions of dynamic tension and his scrupulous attention to life-like detail, by his early 20s Daguet had transferred his talents to Sigfried Bing''s famed gallery "L''Art Nouveau". There, in Bing''s studio above the shop on the rue de Provence, Daguet began creating his extraordinary bronze metalwork, often inlaid with copper panels as well as hardstone and glass cabochons, which Bing would then offer on the gallery floor alongside the objets d''art of Louis Tiffany, William Morris and Eugène Gaillard.This box is one in a series of square forms featuring profoundly integrated compositions portraying unusual predators, with their skins, spines and fins employed as unifying design elements. Created b
y a masterly combination of repoussé and chasing, the fish''s high relief body rests upon a red ground. When the lid and front side are opened, a beautiful red leather interior is revealed. In 1905, when Bing closed his gallery, clients like Sandra Bernhardt and the Barrymore family simply followed Daguet to his new studio down by the Observatory in the 10th arrondissement. It was World War One that brought about a 12-year hiatus and transformation in Daguet''s career. Like Jean Després, he was recruited as an aviation designer and illustrator, earning the title of "true apostle of aerial art", while his work continued to evolve. Intriguing descriptions exist of a series of steel and bronze DESKS exhibited at the Galiera in 1926, suggesting Daguet embraced an Art Moderne aesthetic. Where are they now, and who will rediscover them?Until then, we are proud to share this rare and powerful artwork with our collectors. The "Fish" box is Daguet at his best, exhibiting masterful control of his materials of invention and articulating a clear and unyielding aesthetic vision.Similar boxes by Daguet are pictured in: The Paris Salons 1895-1915, Vol. V: Objects d''Art and Metalware, by Alastair Duncan, Woodbridge, Suffolk: Antique Collectors'' Club, 1999, pp. 202-203.
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