An 18 carat gold brooch in medieval style with a gold plaque with a 'basse taille' enamel of a lady holding a falcon, in parallel to the works that were made by Emile Pye or Routier for Lucien Falize, with little diamond and pearl details around the brooch, France, circa 1880.
weight: 29 grams diameter: 4.5 cm.
Emile Pye was Alexis and Lucien Falize's master enamellist, who was a specialist in 'basse taille' enamel. He made a large triptych in the same style and taste as this brooch based on a tapestry in the Sens Cathedral treasury, known as 'Les Trois Couronnement' featuring the coronation of the Virgin, Bathsheba and Hester. No jewellery by Pye is known and this brooch is certainly more naif then Pye's work but perhaps it was a study by one of Falize's apprentices.
'Basse-taille' is an enamelling technique in which the artist creates a low-relief pattern in gold by engraving or chasing. The entire pattern is created in such a way that its highest point is lower than the surrounding metal. A translucent enamel is then applied to the metal, allowing light to reflect from the relief and creating an artistic effect.
This difficult technique combines the art of engraving the gold relief as if it were a cameo with enamelling.