Spotlight On: John Wood Dodge Miniature

June 27, 2010

18K solid case and clasp fittings elaborately engraved and enameled, housing portrait of (yet) unknown sitter of watercolor on ivory with a small surface crack to the ivory. This piece came from a Maryland estate, and believed to be painted by John Wood Dodge, American (1807-1893).

What a magnificent and complete bracelet, with its clasp and hairwork intact. Pieces like this are truly individual, nothing can match or compare to it, because its materials and subject permeate every level of its construction.

Note the enamel to the back of the clasp and how the use of enamel was becoming fashionable for larger items of jewellery, after being pushed aside for the lines and art of the neo-classical pieces.

I could look at this piece all day. It’s a true work of art, there’s no other way to describe it.

Well, one more picture and I’m going to enjoy the rest of the day.

Courtesy of Sarah Nehama.

3 Responses to “Spotlight On: John Wood Dodge Miniature”

  1. Sarah Says:

    Although the miniature has not been out of the case for examination, I’ve shown all these pictures to one of the foremost experts on portrait miniatures in this country, Elle Shushan. She thinks the portrait is not by JW Dodge, and not even American, but French. That’s as much as I’ve gotten, and since I’m not going to open it myself, that’s how it’ll stay!

    for reference, and to drool over more:

  2. Well done, Sarah! French, you say? Well, that would account for the enamel and its design. Very interesting!

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