Style Napoleon III / Ref.13777
Bronze gilded suspension with glass gemstones. Napoleon III period.
Width: 29'' ½ 75cm
Height: 57'' ⅞ 147cm
Mount in gilded bronze, original opaline and glass gemstones.Around 1890
This gilt bronze chandelier has eight branches which take the form of glassware and candles and surround a semi spherical decorated with glass gemstones. Result of a very careful work, this chandelier has incised decorations of fleur de lis, crosses and flowers. Richly decorated, it displays numerous characters and creatures: dragons adorn the mounts of the branches, playing with the effect of curves and counter-curves, childish characters whose bodies terminate in vegetative vases support torches. Finally, heads of bearded men and women, masks similar to the foliage of ornamental furniture of the eighteenth century, occupy the uprights of this chandelier. Each space is occupied by a decoration of gilded bronze, showing the work of craftsmanship that has been done on this chandelier: latticed elements alongside small sculptures making all the charm of this true piece of art.
At the Paris International Exhibition in 1881, the American Thomas Edison, inventor and businessman, gave a demonstration of his incandescent light bulbs. Parisians were excited. Because of its cost, public electric-powered lighting was reserved for prestigious places, French Theatre, Place de l’Opera, Grand Boulevards and of course the Universal Exhibitions, showcases with the emerging technology. Thanks to Edison, everything changed. The Continental Edison Company was founded a year later. At that time Paris was divided into several areas allocated to different companies. Each company had its own technical standards and it took until 1913 to unify the network that was given to the Compagnie Parisienne de Distribution d'Electricité (CPDE).The appearance of the incandescent bulb not only allowed the construction of large chandeliers, but also lasted for nearly a thousand hours before being replaced, and all this for a very low manufacturing cost (25 francs at the time). Electric lighting was going to replace the use of gas during the 1890s and by the beginning of the 20th century became the only means of lighting.
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