Gold, Jasper and Carnelian: Johann Christian Neuber at the Saxon Court
Johann Christian Neuber (1736–1808) was a goldsmith and mineralogist at the Saxon Court. In 1769 he became director of the Grünes Gewölbe, the magnificent State Treasury, and was appointed court jeweler in 1775. He specialized in creating small gold boxes, chatelaines and watchcases decorated with semiprecious stones, such as agate, jasper and carnelian. Neuber fashioned enchanting landscapes, complex floral designs and geometric patterns out of tiny cut stones, often incorporating Meissen porcelain plaques, cameos and miniatures. These one-of-a-kind objects are treasured in public and private collections all over the world today, but have never been brought together.
This book is the first comprehensive introduction to this master craftsman's oeuvre, presenting boxes and other decorative objects from the Grünes Gewölbe, the Metropolitan Museum of Art as well as public and private collections in Germany, France and United States. One of its highlights is the 'Breteuil Table', still owned by the family for which it was made as a diplomatic gift nearly 250 years ago.
Beautiful photographs of all Neuber's creations adorn this extraordinary book – well over 500 in number. The context and history of the growing interest in mineralogy and its celebration in these works of art are fully investigated. Its distinguished authors include Dr Jutta Kappel, Senior Curator and Deputy Director of the Grünes Gewölbe, Dresden; art historians and specialists Sophie Mouquin and Philippe Poindront; marquis de Breteuil, Henri-François Le Tonnelier; and the editor of the book, Alexis Kugel, of the famous Parisian gallery.
Edited by Alexis Kugel
400 pages, hardback
280 x 240 mm, 568 colour illus.
ISBN: 978 1 907372 36 0
Accompanying a once-in-a-lifetime exhibition at the Grünes Gewölbe, Dresden, March – May 2012; at The Frick Collection, New York, 29 May – 19 August; at Galerie J. Kugel, Paris, 13 September – 10 November 2012.
In the press
"The exhibition is accompanied by a lavish publication that includes essays by several scholars and a catalogue raisonné"—The New York Times
"An incredibly comprehensive and beautiful companion tool that's worth saving room for in the suitcase"—Art and Antiques