Tuesday, February 10, 2015

After a Fashion: A Silver and Gemstone Buckle and Belt Tag, 1905

Silver and Gemstone Buckle
and Belt Tag, 1905
This and all images courtesy of:
The Victoria & Albert Museum
This silver buckle and belt tag are decorated with enamel and set with moonstones, amethysts and chalcedony. The silver is adorned with cast roundels of stags and birds.

Henry Wilson, an architect, sculptor, metalworker and jeweler, is the artistic genius behind this magnificent, yet practical, work of art. Wilson was considered one of the most accomplished of all Arts and Crafts jewelers. He was so well-respected, a fellow artist-jeweler once wrote to him: “I simply can't understand how you can do such wonderful work. Apart altogether from the beauty of the designs and colour, the making of the things beats everything.”

Wilson’s great influence in the Arts and Crafts movement was his championing of the showcasing of the simple polished stone. This, he felt preserved the stone’s, as he put it, “mysterious magical quality.”

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