A Pair of late Eighteenth Century Chinese reverse glass pictures of particularly fine quality and in their original giltwood frames. The pictures depict romantic scenes with the Lovers in garden settings besides a lake with buildings behind.
Reverse glass paintings from the 18th century in China were a popular art form during the Qing Dynasty. Also known as “tongjinghua” in Chinese, these paintings involved the creation of images on glass panels in a reverse manner, where the artist painted on the backside of the glass. The process of creating reverse glass paintings typically involved several steps. First, a sheet of glass was cleaned and coated with a layer of black or dark-coloured varnish on one side. The artist would then paint the desired image in reverse on the varnished side using pigments, often including vibrant colours and intricate details. The use of gold leaf or metallic paints was also common, adding a touch of opulence to the artwork.
Once the painting was complete, another layer of varnish or lacquer would be applied to protect the artwork and provide a glossy finish. Some reverse glass paintings were further embellished with additional elements like calligraphy, decorative borders, or floral motifs. The subjects of 18th-century Chinese reverse glass paintings were diverse and included landscapes, figures, flowers, birds, animals, mythological scenes, and narrative storytelling. These paintings often reflected the traditional Chinese artistic styles and themes prevalent during that era. Reverse glass paintings were admired for their delicate and luminous appearance. When viewed from the front, the glass acted as a protective layer, preserving the colors and details of the artwork. The technique was particularly popular in southern China, with centres of production in areas such as Yangzhou and Guangdong.
Today, 18th-century Chinese reverse glass paintings are highly valued for their historical significance and artistic merit. They are sought after by collectors and enthusiasts of Chinese art and provide a glimpse into the artistic practices of the Qing Dynasty.
Height: 161/4” 41cm inc. frame
Width: 21” 53cm inc. frame