Firebacks

  1. 598

    ripley_004.jpg
    590 x 470 mm

    Description: Rectangular with fillet edging; central, oval panel with fillet edging containing the semi-reclining, begowned figure of Cleopatra, a mirror/sceptre in her right hand and an asp in her left hand; oval border with astragal and fillet edging and undulating foliage; in each of the top spandrels, a face of a putto; in the bottom spandrels, a triangular design of swirled foliage; at the centre of each side, overlapping the central oval border, an oval cartouche with scrolls in the inward facing side; four horizontal plank lines regularly spaced.

    Notes: The naivety of the figuration and the similarity of the scrolled designs suggest that this may be the work of the same pattern-maker as the Lenard fireback. Either of two tapestries of the death of Cleopatra after Karel van Mander II (1579-1623), one made for the Swedish royal court, may be the inspiration for this fireback.

    Manufactured: in the mid 17th century in the Weald area of England.

    Current location: Mark Ripley Forge & Fireplaces, Northbridge Street, Robertsbridge, East Sussex, England.