SOLD Saint Fabiola Enamel, by Pierre Bonnet Master Enameller of France, French Religious Enamel From Limoges France  circa 1930
SOLD Saint Fabiola Enamel, by Pierre Bonnet Master Enameller of France, French Religious Enamel From Limoges France  circa 1930
SOLD Saint Fabiola Enamel, by Pierre Bonnet Master Enameller of France, French Religious Enamel From Limoges France  circa 1930
SOLD Saint Fabiola Enamel, by Pierre Bonnet Master Enameller of France, French Religious Enamel From Limoges France  circa 1930
SOLD Saint Fabiola Enamel, by Pierre Bonnet Master Enameller of France, French Religious Enamel From Limoges France  circa 1930
SOLD Saint Fabiola Enamel, by Pierre Bonnet Master Enameller of France, French Religious Enamel From Limoges France  circa 1930

SOLD Saint Fabiola Enamel, by Pierre Bonnet Master Enameller of France, French Religious Enamel From Limoges France circa 1930

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Saint Fabiola Enamel, by Pierre Bonnet Master Enameller of France, French Religious Enamel From Limoges France circa 1930

There have been many images of Saint Fabiola or 'The Virgin in Red' as she is often referred to but not many as fine as this enamel which was done by Pierre Bonnet around 1920-1930. It is taken from the original painting by Jeanne Jaques Henner, the original of which has unfortunately been lost.

Saint Fabiola was a wealthy Roman Patrician of the famous Fabia family. She was for a time a member of St. Jerome's circle but fell away, divorced her husband for his dissolute life, and remarried. On the death of her second husband, she returned to the Church, devoted herself to charitable works and aiding churches, and built the first Christian public hospital in the West, where she personally tended the sick. She visited Jerome at Bethlehem in 395, supported him in his controversy with Patriarch John of Jerusalem, decided not to join Paula's community, and on her return to Rome, continued her charitable work, opening a hospice for poor pilgrims at Porto with St. Pammachius. Jerome wrote two treatises for her and is the source of most of our information about her. Her feast day is December 27th.

This is a beautiful example of the quality of enamel paintings produced in the early part of the 20th century by the master enamellers of Limoges. It has been extraordinarily difficult to photograph as the glaze is deep and brilliant and does not photograph well.

Added to that the copper on which the enamelling was done is shaped to the features of Saint Fabiola and the folds of her hood. It is stunning to look at close up but a nightmare to photograph.

Each colour in these Limoges enamels has to be applied separately then fired then on to the next colour. Enamels can take between 16 and 22 firings, a long and laborious process that has to be right first time each time. No wonder they are so sought after.

The frame is unusual for these enamels as it is solid wood.

Pierre Bonnet worked at Limoges capital of the “Arts du Feu” for over twenty years. A former student of the Ecole des Beaux Arts, he was the recipient of many awards including the Meilleur Ouvrier de France. In 1955 he became President of the National Jury in Limoges and was awarded l’Ordre du Merite de l’Artisant Francais. He was considered a Master Enameller of his day.

This beautiful enamel measures 21.5x23.5 centimetres including the frame and the enamel itself measures 9x10 centimetres

PLEASE NOTE another version of this enamel by Pierre Bonnet was sold by Palladium Fine Art for £1250 two years ago.

Please study the photographs carefully as they form an integral part of the sale description.