PAIR OF BOIS DURCI PLAQUES
A pair of ‘Bois Durci’ plaques, one plaque has a semi draped nymph lying on her side by a harp with children playing musical instruments, the other plaque has the semi naked nymph reading a book with children playing instruments.
‘Bois Durci’ was invented and patented in France and England in 1854 by Francois Charles Lepage, and it is made from finely ground wood ‘flour’ mixed with a binder, either egg or blood albumen or gelatine. The wood is probably either ebony or rose wood, giving a black or brown result. The mixture is dried and ground to a fine powder. The powder is placed in a steel mould and compressed in a powerful hydraulic press whilst being heated by steam. The final product has a highly polished finish imparted by the surface of the steel mould.