Chandelier

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Origin
Holland, Netherlands
Period
16th century
Material
Brass
Dimensions
81 cm
Diameter
74.5 cm
Literature

C. Willemijn Fock, red., 'Het Nederlands interieur in beeld 1600-1900', Zwolle 2001.
Peter Thornton, 'Authentic Decor, The Domestic Interieur 1620-1920', London 2000.

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Description

A chandelier made of cast brass with twelve arms, divided into two tiers. The chandelier's central stem is built from profiled elements with rings flanking three large decorative shapes: the upper part a mushroom, the centre a vase-shape and the lower part a ball terminating in a tear. Arms are fastened between the profiled elements. These arms are decorated with scrolls. The arms have dish-shaped drip-pans on which the nozzles are fastened.

A new type of lighting was developed in the Low Countries in the 17th century: the chandelier of cast brass with a richly ornamented stem with a ball to the lower side terminating in a tear. The elegantly shaped arms were fastened in a circle around the stem, either in one or in two tiers. Although this type of chandelier is often depicted on 17th-century paintings, and therefore apparently omnipresent in Dutch households, research in inventories has shown that this was not the case.

They usually appeared in the houses of the very fortunate, where they, because of the rich reflection of light in the various profiles and shapes, were a very attractive part of the interior decoration.

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