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16th. Century Venetian gilded tabernacle frame with hand cut and carved mouldings.

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Blaidd-Drwg

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This is fascinating. When I was in class, this was the most difficult thing I tried. But it's also the one thing I want to get back into (gilding).
 

Adam W.

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This is fascinating. When I was in class, this was the most difficult thing I tried. But it's also the one thing I want to get back into (gilding).
Here's a nice video from the framing shop at the National Gallery about some large frames for the Titian exhibition to whet your gilding appetite.

 

MARK.B.

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Really starting to show the details now the gilding is almost done ( or is it :)), out of curiosity just how much will the finished piece weigh ?.
 

TRITON

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I seem to remember somewhere the original size for gilding was honey, egg yolk and incredibly blood. Though whose blood it didnt say.
 

Adam W.

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Really starting to show the details now the gilding is almost done ( or is it :)), out of curiosity just how much will the finished piece weigh ?.
Last day of gilding tomorrow, then there's loads of punchwork and a bit of egg tempera to do. The whole thing weighs 13kg and I don't think it'll get any heavier unless I put a marble or plaster relief in it, then it'll need some beefing up.

It looks nice in low natural light, which is what I wanted.


IMG_0614.JPG
 

MARK.B.

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Thank you, i would have guessed much heavier :) perhaps a glass or two of that Vodka that is in danger of evaporating :eek: and an early night, you have busy day tomorrow.
 

Adam W.

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I seem to remember somewhere the original size for gilding was honey, egg yolk and incredibly blood. Though whose blood it didnt say.
Dragons blood, apparently. Quite where they found all the dragons is anyones guess.
 

misterfish

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Dragons blood, apparently. Quite where they found all the dragons is anyones guess.
I assume they used the Dragon Blood Tree - Dracaena cinnabari

I also expect the dragon's blood extracted from it was red as modern gilding usually uses a red paint or dye as an undercoat.

Keep up the goow work

Jeff
 

stuartpaul

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What a wonderful bit of work! Really nice write up as well, - thank you.

I’m the sort of saddo who when we visit the National Gallery spends as much time looking at the frames as I do at the paintings. A number are truly amazing and I’d love to have a look behind the scenes at how the look after them.
 

Adam W.

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Thank you.

There are some good videos about framing and conservation on the National Gallery youtube site. You can get to it from the video on the Titian frames which I posted. There's a smattering of other stuff, but picture frames have been seriously overlooked by art historians.

Peter Schade at the National seems to be on a personal quest to change that and he's set himself the task of making sure that the paintings in the National Gallery are framed properly. No mean feat, as that's quite a few paintings.

I'm interested in them as a piece of work in their own right and particularly like the progression through the different styles of Italian architectural 15th. - 17th. Century frames.

Here's a small, unfinished 17th. Century Sansovino frame (my favorite style) I made for a museum in Milan.

Poldi Pezzoli Sansoveno Frame.jpg



 
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Adam W.

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And here's the most amazing miniature Sansovino frame from the V&A. All that architecture parceled up in a small package.


What a wonderful thing.....


IMG_3585.JPG
IMG_3591.JPG
IMG_3589.JPG
 

Adam W.

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5 hours of punchwork later, it sparkles.....

IMG_0620.JPG


All I have to do now is paint the egg tempera. I'll use aquamarine, as that's what I have until I get some azurite from London to do it properly.
 

Adam W.

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Sorry to keep posting similar pictures, but I'm really enjoying the way this thing lights up in the changing light. It's doing exactly what I thought it would do.

Modern thinking is that frames should be toned down and the lighting remaining the same, but toning down the finish decreases the luminosity of the gilding, which I think defeats the object of gilding

IMG_0639.JPG
 

MARK.B.

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You have no need to apologize, you're detailed description and lots of pics are what brings me back (y) , as you say the play of natural light can be subtle but make all the difference to how the piece looks , now a blazing log fire and candle light will bring out those hidden details but change constantly as the flames flicker and the fire dies down, be a sight to see though in a comfy chair with a tipple of your favorite poison :)
 

nickds1

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This is a truly amazing piece of work - absolutely glorious!

If I could ask some crude questions please?

How much do you think you've spent on special materials and tools and how many hours a) working on it and b) researching around it?
 

Adam W.

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This is a truly amazing piece of work - absolutely glorious!

If I could ask some crude questions please?

How much do you think you've spent on special materials and tools and how many hours a) working on it and b) researching around it?
I've used about £1000 on materials and tools.
Hundreds of hours on research, including writing a dissertation on it.

But I reckon I can make the next one in 4 weeks if I use the frieze that I have made and bagged gesso. If I set up a production line, I could make them even quicker. Which is what the whole project was about.

How long did it take to make in the 16th. Century?

I reckon they were easily knocking them out in a week or so, and they would have had three or more people bashing these things out with a strict boundary between shop trades.
 

paulrbarnard

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I don’t think you have mentioned it yet but is there an intended picture to be mounted in the frame? I fully understand this is about the frame and manufacturing techniques but it is at the end of the day a frame for a picture and it got me wondering what your final intentions for the frame are.
 

Adam W.

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I don’t think you have mentioned it yet but is there an intended picture to be mounted in the frame? I fully understand this is about the frame and manufacturing techniques but it is at the end of the day a frame for a picture and it got me wondering what your final intentions for the frame are.
My only intention was to produce the frame as a research project and I have not thought a great deal about what to do with it afterwards. It doesn't go with the rest of the house, although they are from the same period, so it'll live in the workshop for a while if I can find a space for it.

I was intending to exhibit it in London along with the chest as part of my degree show, but it's proving more than a headache getting it there. There was a time when I would have put it all on a pallet and just sent it, but the requirement to now obtain customs clearance and the lack of any clear guidance on how to do it makes it very difficult.
 
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