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[Tidbits] The Emperor Moth and The Enamelist


#1

Just for those etymologically-minded amongst you. the Emperor Moth is
also known as a moth of the Saturniidae family as well
as–incorrectly I might add–the genus name Pavonia. Sometimes it is
even called Saturniidae Pavonia. It is the only member of its kind to
be found in the British Isles where it is just referred to as the
Emperor Moth. Wait wait. There’s more. There is truly no end to
excitement when it comes to moths and jewelry.

This thing–when a male–has a wing span of about 2.36" and when a
female 3.15". She. as is often wont in the animal creature kingdom of
our planet. is not as pretty as he. I defend myself here and now to
claim loud and clear this is not true among us homo-sapiens where any
male knows–if he values his very life–that it is the female who is
the most attractive. Let he who disagrees bravely step forth and risk
the wrath of the fates. Me. I’m stickin’ to my story and the devil
take his toll. As a couple of quick parenthetical asides. the Emperor
Moth is drop dead gorgeous and tends–in the mating season–to cull
out sluggish females. Which begs the question… . why would a male
want a sluggish female? I suspect the answers to this conundrum would
evoke discussions that would even put the Trump/Cruz debates to
shame. not that I want to delve into that hairy arena of politics.

Which brings me via a most logical twist of mind. to my Enamelist. He
was born in Dunkerque (more familiarly to those who remember WWII as
Dunkirk) a commune in northern France–this word means Church on a
Dune in Flemish–which is famous for its battle by the British and
French in an effort to prevent the German invasion. That said. our
guy–I shall use his first name for now–our Eugene (1870-1916) began
a brief career as head of Rene Lalique’s enameling workshop and worked
there for seven years. He was a talented sculptor and goldsmith. but
his area of excellence lay in enameling. He was considered. in his
time. Art Nouveau’s best craftsman in his field. His creations were
on display with huge success at the Salon of the Societe des Artistes
Francais and later that year he acted as a member of the jury along
with Lalique and Fourquet for an exhibition at the New Gallery in
London.

Now here comes the egotistical side of me. I never heard of the guy
till just recently. And–of course–since I never heard of him I am
presuming there are a goodly amount of you who also never heard of
him. Shh. You hear that? What’s that noise? Ah. I think it’s the
cascading sound of thundering hoof-beats as the cavaliers of the day
charge forward with vengeance etched on to their down-turned lips
intent upon decimating my fragile ego.

That aside. our enamellist’s full name was Eugene Feuillatre and one
of his creations was an enameled brooch of the downturned wings of an
emperor moth cloaking the head of a woman. It’s made out of gold and
contains moonstones, diamonds, and a pearl. It measures 2 =BE by 2
=BE inches. And is–even if I must say so myself–drop dead gorgeous.
Wait… there’s more. Yessirree babaloo. Alongside of Eugene’s
creation of a Lady-faced Emperor Moth I have placed the real thing in
all it’s glory. When seeing them side by side. it is truly difficult
to differentiate one from the other. the real thing (whichever that
is in this new context) having a slight edge in beauty over the
other.

And now. the very reason of being. The culmination of trudging
through my Tidbits. You know. I know you know. You know I know you
know.

The trek to the source. The visit to the image. also known as the
viewing experience. Here’s how to get there. Home page.
http://www.tyler-adam.com. Scroll down. Left side. [Tidbits]. Click.
And there for your sensory optic pleasure you will see Eugene
Feuillatre’s work as he copies with success one of nature’s
masterpieces.

And there ya have it. That’s it for this week folks. Catch you all
next week.

Benjamin Mark


#2

Lovely pendant, lovely moth. The pearl pendant reminds me of a funny
conversation I had at the Smithsonian some years ago when visiting
the Faberge exhibit. While looking at a piece with a large baroque
pearl pendant, a visiting gentleman asked me if they couldn’t have
done something to fix the pearl?

It is hard to beat nature, whether moth or pearl.