Portrait of a Woman
Unlike fragile portrait miniatures painted in watercolor on vellum or ivory, which are prone to cracking, fading, and flaking, enamels are resilient, impervious to the effects of light, and retain their striking original colors over time. Partly for this reason enamel was considered ideal for reproducing famous paintings and treasured portraits in a reduced and luminous form. The complicated and labor-intensive process of enameling required the artist to fire numerous layers of colored metal oxide at different temperatures, which made it difficult to produce a faithful portrait likeness, though masters of the medium were able create portraits of remarkable subtlety imbued with the sitter's pers ...
Enamel in a silver gilt frame
2.3 x 2.1cm
Image and text: The Cleveland Museum of Art, 2023
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