Ref. 528/19

E. Soleau


(attributed to)

“Japonisme” Chandelier with Beshimi masks

Circa 1890

Height : 110 cm (43,3 in.) ; Diameter : 90 cm (35,4 in.)

Large “Japonisme” chandelier in gilded bronze with eight light-arms ending with corollas in molded glass. It is composed of four gilded bronze Beshimi masks inspired by the Nô theater, and four stylized fans, lined with lighted glass tinted in blue, red, green and purple, centered respectively by a dragonfly, a seahorse, and two spiders. Flowering cherry branches dot the whole. The whole is suspended by four cords connected by an elegant tied ribbon forming a ceiling illuminating with a light.           


Related work :
Chandelier signed E. Soleau
Gilded bronze, tinted glass


Eugène François Alexandre Soleau, born October 3, 1853 in Buenos Aires, Argentina and died July 8, 1929 in Paris, was a French industrialist and inventor. Promoter of the protection of intellectual property, he is the father of the Envelope Soleau, a non-binding and inexpensive French instrument used to prove the anteriority of an intellectual creation. Manufacturer of bronzes, secretary (1885-1889), then vice-president (from 1895 to 1899) and finally president (from 1900) of the Syndicate of bronze manufacturers, he invested himself, on a French and international scale, in the protection of intellectual property. Vice-president of the International Association for the Protection of Industrial Property, he participates, as a delegate of the Bronze, Jewelery, Jewelery, Goldsmith, Ceramics, Glassware, and of all plastic arts unions, at the international industrial property congresses in Vienna (1897), London (1898) and Zurich (1899).


From 1853, and the opening of Japan following the intrusion of the US navy, and more precisely from the 1860’s, the enthusiasm of everything coming from Japan or imitating its style conquers numerous occidental countries from France and Britain. This movement, called “Japonism”, will last until the early 20th century. The previous centuries and decades had already had a certain interest for the exoticism such as chinoiseries ou turqueries in the 18th century or the Orientalism of the 19th century. The Japonism movement has been developed by artists looking for new means of expressions. Size, mediums, colours, drawing and perspectives are reinvented. Decorative Arts, as in painting, draw on those new sources of inspiration patterns to renew their repertoire.  

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