Art Nouveau French .800 Silver Wax Seal, Nude & Dolphins, Firmin Pierre Lasserre
A superb antique French .800 silver writer's wax seal or desk stamp by Firmin-Pierre Lasserre (1867-1930). Adorned with the most collectible of themes, the female nude. Finely detailed and done in raised relief, is the classic figure of a female nude, Venus rising from the sea or a bathing beauty. The background comprises of a clash of waves and seaweed, the tempestuous sea and sinuous line work characteristic of the Art Nouveau era. A celebration of the female form - she is perfectly proportioned. The expression on her face is exquisitely beautiful and her hair cascades down her back. A pair of finely sculpted Louis XVI style dolphins serve as the base. Finished with an oval matrix with monogram of entwined initials MD or DM in a Gothic Renaissance style font. The top of the handle with the signature of Lasserre. Stunning quality work to this wax seal, a reflection of the masterful skill of the sculptor and silversmith. The fantastic collaboration with the famed medalist / sculptor Lasserre makes this even more of a truly remarkable 'find'. Hallmarked with the French head of the wild boar, in use from 1838 to indicate a silver content of .800/1000. The mark was typically used on small objects of at least 80% pure silver content, close to .925 sterling. Bearing a silversmith's mark, appears to be that of Benjamin Baillaud, active in 1906 at 18 rue Dussoubs in Paris. In overall good condition with general wear commensurate with use and age. Measures 2 1/2" length.