The frame is constructed from a softwood profile moulding, mitred at the corners. The working edge is built from the addition of battens to the reverse. The reeded leading edge is an additional section, nailed in place. The leading edge is cross-banded with composition strips. The sight edge and back edge carry composition mouldings. The slip retains its original water gilded surface. The rest of the surface of the frame remains more ambiguous. The inner flat is strongly cracked from the contraction of a size layer. The rest of the surface is similarly cracked, but also carries a mixture of repair, re-patination and possibly original dark patination.
The frame remains in an ambiguous state in respect to the level of patination. The size layer of the frame proper has deteriorated and has considerably altered the appearance of the gilding and surface.
143.0 x 118.5 x 12.0 cm; sight 101.0 x 76.5 cm
The frame is one of two classical revival forms that occurred regularly in the nineteenth century, and in particular in the Melbourne frames of John Thallon. Examples of this type are to be noted on the walls of the studio of Frédéric Bazille in 1870.2 The other dominant form uses a fluted inner scotia. A nearly identical pair of frames left in the timber with gilded banding and sight edge ornament, are found on a pair of still life paintings by Ugo Catani, from the same year. (2007.1, 2007.2)
1 Hilary Maddocks, ‘Picture Framemakers in Melbourne c. 1860–1930’ in vol. 1, Frames, Melbourne Journal of Technical Studies in Art, University of Melbourne Conservation Service, 1999.
2 See Monet & Bazille, A Collaboration, edited by David A. Brenneman, High Museum of Art, Harry N. Abrams, New York, 1999. Fig 31, p.73, Frédéric Bazille Studio in the rue La Condamine, 1870, from the collection of the Musée d’Orsay, Paris.