After Robert Adam (1728-1792); A Fine Hand-Painted Classical Frieze on Silk c.1770

Origin: English
Period: George III
Provenance: Unknown
Date: c.1760-80
Width: 67”
Height: 21”

The very finely drawn classical painted frieze on silk, after Robert Adam (1728-1792), depicting a rectangular stone plaque to the centre with a reclining female figure and an infant offering a posy of flowers, surmounted by a flowering urn, and flanked by foliate arabesques and oval stone medallions to flaming torches, each depicting a female deity, to a dark creamy gold silk ground, the whole surviving from the heights of Georgian England.

Condition wise the silk is a little tired and faded but still wonderfully beautiful as an entirety and soft to the touch. It is in as found condition and is dusty, marked and perishing in places, the edges with tack holes, and there are the remains of an interesting early manuscript label lower left which is partly indecipherable reading; '253 ... pair silk pan[els] ... from Robert Adam work sh[eet?] ...’.

This silk was probably designed to hang over a door, chimneypiece or perhaps a curtain pelmet in a formal interior. It may have been a design for then transmission to plaster. The balance to the design is beautifully and each element is allowed space and it flows wonderfully from left to right. As per the manuscript label it appears to be have been one of a pair, and the label would be worthy of further research.

The Palladian style dominated British architecture for most of the 1700s, until the rise of the Adam style, which held sway for the final decades of the eighteenth century. Brothers Robert and James Adam were almost single-handedly responsible for infusing Georgian architecture with the sensibilities and elements of classical Hellenic and Latinate design. Their elegant, sophisticated form of Neoclassicism affected architecture, but also interior design, furniture design, and landscaping.

A rare Georgian delight; absolutely stunning.