About this artwork
Opus sectile, or the art of inlaying stones, was a form of ancient Roman decoration revived during the 16th century in Milan, Rome, and Florence. It was employed for the decoration of tabletops, cabinets, and other ecclesiastical and secular furnishings, and it combined marbles with hard stones like agate, which were much more difficult to cut, to form abstract patterns or images. This plaque would have been a small devotional object for a wealthy household and was probably made in Rome during the last quarter of the 16th century, when there was a revival of such decoration.
- Plaque with Virgin and Child
- Gilt bronze set against a field lapis lazuli, agate, and Sicilian jasper
- 14 1/2 × 9 1/2 × 1 1/8 in. (36.9 × 24.2 × 2.9 cm)
- Gift of The Antiquarian Society