the Alceste convex mirror

In Mirrors by Mark Evans

The Alceste convex mirror uses an unusual base that required inlaying Venetian glass bits in curves. This was achieved with a great deal of patience! The existing frame was gilded with gold metal leaf and then the glass was applied( the shine of the metal leaf is used to “back light” the glass). The tips of the frame have spheres of rock crystal and citrine spheres.

The Alceste mirror is around 14.5 inches in diameter.

Jewelry for walls!

A portrait of Christoph Willibald von Gluck by Joseph Duplessis, 1775

The Alceste convex mirror is named for one of the operas by the great 18th century composer, Gluck. Gluck was Marie Antoinette’s music teacher in Vienna before she left for France to marry the dauphin. She championed his music in Paris. To find out more about this remarkable artist go to https://www.operadeparis.fr/en/magazine/how-gluck-revolutionised-opera

Alceste, La Scala 1954

The great Maria Callas sang Alceste in 1954. It was the first of two Gluck operas that Callas sang at La Scala, followed three years later by an Italian version ofIphigénie en Tauride.It was in the 1953-54 season that she rose to become ‘Queen of La Scala’, also singing Medea.Elisabetta (Don Carlo) and Giulia (La Vestale) at the Milanese theatre.Her conductor for Alceste was Carlo Maria Giulini. Describing Callas in the role of the Ancient Greek queen who is prepared to sacrifice herself so that her husband may live, he said:“[She] was opera incarnate –absolute harmony between word, music and action … In all my years in the opera house I have never known an artist like Callas. Hers is no fabricated legend: she truly did have something different.”

To hear La Divina sing an excerpt from a live performance of Alceste go to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p44lDfFaHX0