Alphabet Challenge: L – Lithophanes
2018 alphabet challenge
L – Lithophanes from the Blair Museum
From Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lithophane]
A lithophane (French: lithophanie) is an etched or molded artwork in very thin translucent porcelain that can only be seen clearly when back lit with a light source. It is a design or scene in intaglio that appears "en grisaille" (in gray) tones.
A lithophane presents a three-dimensional image - completely different from two-dimensional engravings and daguerreotypes that are "flat". The images change characteristics depending on the light source behind them. Window lithophane panel scenes change throughout the day depending on the amount of sunlight. The varying light source is what makes lithophanes more interesting to the viewer than two-dimensional pictures.
The Blair Museum of Lithophanes, on the campus of the Toledo Botanical Gardens, houses the largest collection of lithophanes in the world. It is based on the private collection of Toledo resident and developer Laurel Gotshall Blair, who donated his collection of more than 2300 lithophanes to the City of Toledo prior to his death in 1993.
The technique was developed in Europe in the late 1820s, and its popularity did not survive the end of the 19th century. Interestingly, modern production techniques involving CNC and 3D printing are being used to produce versions of lithophanes. As with much art, photographs provide only a pale idea of the beauty that these objects possess when seen live, and thus an imperfect idea of the artistry behind their creation.
All the photos used in this montage were taken on a recent visit to the Blair Museum. They and the montage itself (created in August 2018) are copyrighted by Elizabeth Jean Jacob, with all rights reserved.
In case you're wondering, the dancing mice that I used in the border are themselves a lithophane. I just cropped away their frame and pasted them into a strip.
arctangent2018AugustartlithophanesBlair Museummontagecollagecompositealphabet challengeabc challengeLetter L