Art Nouveau Gilt Gemstone Plique à Jour Court Jester Pendant
"Plique à Jour" is a French term that means "letting in daylight". The term refers to the jewelry technique in which enamel is applied in cells, similar to cloisonné, but with no backing. This allows light to shine through the transparent or translucent enamel, forming a beautiful stained glass appearance.
This incredible and colorful pendant from the Art Nouveau era (ca1890) is a wonderful example of Plique à Jour jewelry! Made of silver gilt, the pendant depicts an elaborately dressed court jester. His face peaks out from underneath a large, floppy jester's hat, and surrounding his head is an array of feathers that fan out below him, forming an exaggerated costume. The vibrant green and purple plique à jour feathers are individually separated by veins of gilded silver, creating a wonderful stained glass appearance. Set at the tips of the feathers are delicate blue and red cabochon gemstones, a perfect accent! Five sparkling rose cut cut diamonds line the jester's collar, and his face is meticulously hand-painted, including delicate facial features and a curled grey wig. The pendant hangs from a gilded bail at the top, and stamped on the back is a small hallmark that appears to read "800." An exceptionally fine piece, this wonderful pendant is perfect for any Plique à Jour or Art Nouveau collector!
Measurements: The pendant hangs 2 1/4" long (including the bail), measures 1 1/4" wide and 1/8" thick.
Condition: The overall condition of the pendant is excellent. Besides normal surface wear, there is no apparent damage to the gilded silver setting, the plique-à-jour enameling, or the diamonds and gemstone cabochons. The bail is secure and in good working condition.