This mirror began as a response to a painting by the American abstract artist Gene Davies (1920 - 1985). The work is in two parts, a mirror with polished edges and a hand painted panel consisting of stripes using the range of colours in his painting. We changed the widths of the individual stripes, each of which were individually cut and painted using colours from the range by Farrow & Ball.
The stripes were then pinned to a backing board and trimmed to fit into one of two tray frames made in solid beech wood. The frames were hand finished and have walnut plugs on the corners.
The mirror was bonded to a board and mounted into the second frame. Finally both frames were fitted with split battens on all four sides on the reverse of each frame. The battens can either be rested on screws, or on a corresponding batten so they hang flush on the wall. The use of battens also means that the framed panels can slide laterally and that each unit can be displayed in a landscape or portrait format.
An update on our first post. The bespoke commission for a guest bedroom in a London house has now been finished and installed in its new home. The design of this shelf mirror was based on our standard wood model but was made to a specific size. The oak was also tinted to match the colour of a piece of furniture in the room, namely a vintage wardrobe.
The shelf has been fitted with a detachable insert in oak veneered plywood stained the same colour as the frame. The other difference to the standard shelf mirror is the use of lap joints at the top of the frame. This design detail provides a visual echo of the square jointed panels which are a feature of the wardrobe doors.
This mirror was made to the clients specifications: it measures 780 x 530mm with a shelf depth of 100mm. Additionally the shelf perimeter has a 4mm raised lip to help ensure that small objects will not fall off. Like our laminate and metal inserts on the standard shelf mirrors, if the owner wishes to change the appearance of this shelf in the future, the oak insert may be swapped with another to achieve an entirely different look.
Many thanks to our client for allowing the photographs to be taken in their home.
This post shows the development of a recently completed unique mirror - Ghirlandaio (Portrait of a Girl). The starting point was a postcard of a mirror image of the painting in the National Gallery, London - then colour samples were placed next to the image to get a feel for the overall palette.
Next, following some inital sketches, the mirror frame was constructed in beech wood incorporating three of the postcards and painted cardboard panels to represent the final glazed versions. After rejecting a horizontal reading, the images were arranged vertically. This layout is a reference to the Medici Princess boxes by Joseph Cornell, though they also have a contemporary photo booth quality which also reminded me of Warhol.
Various colourways were tried and rejected for the facing on the frame and the glass panels. Finally the painted mirror frame become a sub-frame with the addition of a stained oak outer frame. This, with the corner details provided the finishing touch.
This mirror is now available to purchase though IAP Fine Art, based in London and Monmouth. Our own webpage is here.
This is a new set of multi-part mirrors and panels inspired by The Ru Ware Project, a set of nine paintings executed between 2007-2012 by Brice Marden. The title derives from Marden's experience of viewing an exhibition of the famously scarce Ru Ware ceramics in Taipei. These ceramics were made in China for a short period around 1100 and were highly prized then and now. Marden was intrigued by the colour shifts he witnessed and on his return to the USA he sought to capture his impression from memory.
While Marden's work is dislayed in a horizontal line, the mirrors and panels can be arranged in a multitude of ways using the full nine units or fewer and they can also be rearranged as desired. The slides show three completed units, a detail and test samples. The panels have been hand painted using the lovely chalky paint from Edward Bulmer. The colours used in the first photograph are Aquatic and Vert de Mer - these and the other colours are very similar to the colours Marden used in his set of paintings.
As a point of interest there are twenty-one of these pieces in Taipei, however the British Museum has seventeen, including those in the Percival David Collection. Fewer than one hundred of these ceramics are known to have survived.
We have just started working on a commission for a bedroom in a London house. It is a shelf mirror made to a specific size, namely 780 x 530mm, and the oak will be tinted to match a vintage wardrobe in the room. Rather than our standard mitre joint this mirror will feature lap joints at the top to echo the doors of the wardrobe.
The requested shelf depth will be 100mm and will feature a detachable oak veneer insert. As with the laminate and metal inserts, should the owner wish to change the appearance of the shelf at some future point in time the oak insert may be swapped for another to achieve an entirely different look. The photographs show a test lap joint in unstained American white oak, a detail of the wardrobe and our standard shelf mirror with a blue laminate insert.