A few posts ago, we mentioned the launch of the Gold, Jasper and Carnelian: Johann Christian Neuber at the Saxon Court exhibit in the Frick Collection.
On July 11, The Frick Collection hosted their annual garden party and gave their guests access to this great exhibit. Parts of Neuber’s work were even featured in the Evening Hours section of the New York Times.
This collection has received great reviews, including a great piece also in the New York Times titled A Jeweler Picks Up Where Nature Left Off. In the article, Roberta Smith focuses heavily on one of Neuber’s work titled the Breteuil table,
Ensconced in the museum’s Oval Room, the show’s 43 small, impeccably wrought wonders also include gemstone buttons, a cane handle, several bonbonnières (candy boxes) and one astounding piece of furniture, a modest-size but luxuriously decorated oval table. It was commissioned from Neuber by his chief patron, Friedrich Augustus III (1750- 1827), Elector of Saxony, in 1779, as a gift to the French diplomat Baron de Breteuil. Still owned by the baron’s family, it has never before crossed the Atlantic…the Breteuil table, whose top is something of a pitched battle among sizable Meissen porcelain plaques of mythological scenes, circles of imitation pearls (made of rock crystal and silver dust), and rather bulky swags and wreaths of bas-relief gemstones. As if that were not enough, the legs are decorated with a combination of petrified wood, amethyst, cabochon carnelian and diamond-cut rock crystal, gilt and more imitation pearls…The winner is the field of battle itself, a radiating surface tiled with 128 postage-stamp-size squares: Each is a sample of a different gemstone or petrified wood, numbered according to an identification list in a small booklet that came with the table (and can be perused on a nearby touch screen).
To learn more about the Breteuil Table and the rest of Neuber’s work, make sure to get a copy of the accompanying book Gold, Jasper and Carnelian: Johann Christian Neuber at the Saxon Court.