Art Nouveau Inspired Dragonfly Brooch and Pendant with Plique a Jour, Marcasite and Emerald Accents, 925 Sterling Silver Hallmarked
Art Nouveau Era 1890-1910
Art Nouveau is an international style of art, architecture and applied art, especially the decorative arts, that was most popular between 1890 and 1910
The new art movement had its roots in Britain, in the floral designs of William Morris, and in the Arts and Crafts movement founded by the pupils of Morris.
A reaction to the academic art of the 19th century, it was inspired by natural forms and structures, particularly the curved lines of plants and flowers.
Art Nouveau theorists challenged the belief that art could only manifest itself through painting, drawing or sculpture and advocated that the design of everyday objects (for example, a teapot, a chair or light fitting) could also exude artistic appreciation.
Plique a Jour
Plique-à-jour (French for "letting in daylight") is a vitreous enameling technique where the enamel is applied in cells, similar to cloisonne, but with no backing in the final product, so light can shine through the transparent or translucent enamel. It is in effect a miniature version of stained-glass and is considered very challenging technically: high time consumption (up to 4 months per item), with a high failure rate. The technique is similar to that of cloisonne, but using a temporary backing that after firing is dissolved by acid or rubbed away. A different technique relies solely on surface tension, for smaller areas. In Japan the technique is known as shotai-jippo (shotai shippo), and is found from the 19th century on.
The mineral marcasite, sometimes called white iron pyrite, is iron sulfide (FeS2) with orthorhombic crystal structure.In marcasite jewelry, pyrite used as a gemstone is termed "marcasite" – that is, marcasite jewelry is made from pyrite, not from the mineral marcasite. In the late medieval and early modern eras the word "marcasite" meant both pyrite and the mineral marcasite.