Intaglio You’re It!

You might remember this cover from Southern Accents. Jackye Lanham used this stunning collection of intaglios in the master bedroom of an Atlanta home published in the January ’06 issue. When I see things like this, sometimes I think, “Oh, I like those, maybe I’ll get some.” Then I start doing a little research.

Tiberian Intaglio #17 ” Mars and Venus”

From what I understand, intaglios were originally used as seals to identify property. Seems to me if you had property to identify in ancient Rome, you were probably doing ok. They are often made of precious stones or ivory or some such yummy substance. I think a lot of what we see now are casts of the originals.

I love the way they are often framed en masse; many in a frame and, again, often a series of frames on a wall.
That being said, they are quite dear. You don’t just “get some.”

A collection of (12) Painted and 23Kt
parcel gilt frames having ten Intaglios in each frame; Tiberian Design

And while I like the idea of staggering these up my staircase, it seems unlikely that it will happen any time soon.

 A collection of (12) Painted and 23Kt
parcel gilt frames having a single seal in each frame; Tiberian Design

Tiberian Intaglio #54 ” The combat between
Idas and Apollo “

However. What if we twist things around a bit? Instead of framing something precious and unique, what about something common. I’d love to use my ever-growing collection of shells in just this manner. Each frame with the same type, but varying size of shell. The same paper background as Ms. Lantham used, or perhaps different colors for each.
What about marbles? Fabulous.
Mr. Gambrel did something similar with eggs.

As The Peak of Chic pointed out recently, framing is not an inexpensive project in itself. But I think it might be telling to take something you have jars and jars of and mass them together on a wall.

Go ahead, mark your property.
All intaglios available on 1st Dibs at time of post.  Images labeled Tiberian Designs can be found here.
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9 thoughts on “Intaglio You’re It!

  1. I have literally a hundred Halcyon Days enamels that I do not display anymore. I was thinking that they would look lovely framed…but I would not want to have them glued to a backing because it would ruin them. I wonder if my framer could help me figure something out? I love the look of intaglios, and framing my enamels would achieve a similar result.

  2. Sarah – I think it’s certainly worth the trip – and I think they would look great. Good framers are great at this kind of thing. My favorite one here spent forever helping me with the tulip watercolors – I’m forever indebted to him.

  3. Hello Mrs Blandings…

    Mr Blandings Builds His Dream House is one of my all time favorite movies!

    I’ve enjoyed browsing your wonderful blog this evening.

    Back Porch Musings

  4. Very beautiful & witty blog!
    I love this idea and you’re right – it can transform the seemingly banal into a great collection. I remember seeing cameos displayed in a similar manner in the Hermitage. The impact of the sum of the parts is so much greater than the individual pieces and when it’s something you’re truly passionate about, you really should show it off. Also, a great way to display something very personal in a more public room without it being too suffocatingly cutesy.

  5. I actually did this with Victorian buttons once, neatly arranged in a matrix, but the pleasure wore off and they're gone now.

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