A cast brass crown with a total of sixteen arms divided across two layers.
The chandelier’s central column consists of several profiled elements with rings, between which are two mushroom-shaped elements of increasing size. Below the column is the large bronze ball, terminating in an acorn-shaped finial. The handsomely curving arms are attached to the rings between the profiled elements. At the point of attachment, these are decorated with volute shapes that curl both upwards and downwards. The arms bear bowl-shaped wax catchers, within which the candle sleeves are affixed. The candle sleeves are decorated with bands.
In the seventeenth century, the Low Countries witnessed the emergence of a new type of lighting: the cast brass ball chandelier, with an elaborately profiled column and a ball and finial at the bottom. The handsomely curved arms were attached in a circle around the column, in one or more layers.
Although ball chandeliers are often depicted in seventeenth-century paintings, thus creating the impression that they existed in almost every household, research into estate inventories shows that ball chandeliers were not often installed in residential homes. Likely they were mostly found in the homes of particularly affluent citizens, where the lavish light reflections in the various shapes and profiles made them a highly desirable part of the interior decoration.
Ruitenberg art dealer
C. Willemijn Fock, red., Het Nederlandse interieur in beeld 1600-1900, Zwolle 2001
Peter Thornton, Authentic Decor, The Domestic Interior 1620-1920, Londen 2000
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