Sometimes when we go searching at garage sales, estate sales and auctions we wander around and see lots of wonderful old stuff, and then there are times when you find something that gets you thinking that this might be special. Well this is one of those tales. Last week we were attending our favorite auction, going through the specials cases and looking through some lots of costume jewelry when I spotted this lovely brooch. I picked it up and saw it was actually porcelain, and had an inkling that it was perhaps hand painted. Reaching for my trusty loupe I looked at the brooch in detail and indeed saw that it painted and that there was an artist signature. It also has a pendant attachment common to the late 1800s so a lady could wear the item as a necklace or as a brooch. On the back I saw a number 22 stamped on the back which I surmised meant it was likely German as it was a common practice to identify porcelain factories by a number. I did not recognize the name at the time, but I could see that the quality was one of the finest I had seen so I set my sights on this lot. To make a long story short we managed to get this lot for a fraction of what we thought it might go for.
Once home the research began. The artist signature was “Wagner” who is a very well-known porcelain decorator from Germany in the mid to late 1800s. some of his works are in Museums and command large sums of money. He did a lot of porcelain miniatures like this. We have some other pictures as well in our listing at our shop. The necklace is actually some raised enamel which gives it depth. The detail and quality are the finest I have been fortunate to come across.
There is a name engraved on the frame but I cannot make the name out , I think it is Mary D? something. Wagner did paint miniatures of a lot of famous paintings , so if you recognize it I would love to know.
High quality miniatures are highly sort after as you can have a lot displayed in small area which makes them quite collectible.
I hope you think this is a special as I do. Let us know