Relevant categories: Curios,Objet d Art
(Above photo - Grand Tour marble bust Emperor Augustus )
The Grand Tour refers to the expeditions by aristocratic British young men to continental Europe starting mid-17th century. While the journeys were mainly on land, they sometimes took the form of voyages in the Mediterranean. The tourists explored art, archeology, and literature in a bid to explain the origins of European culture.
They went from one European city to another sampling the local cultures. The grand tourists socialized with local populations and acquired knowledge. Their caravans consist of several chaperones, taking them through France, Germany, Switzerland, Egypt, Italy, and the Holy Lands.
( Above Photo: Pair Marble Obelisks Grand Tour Italian Decorative )
As the aristocratic, deep-pocketed, and privileged tourists socialized across Europe, the perfected their skills in the German, French, and Italian language. But they also met local artists and bought what’s now called ‘grand tour objects.”
(Above photo - Monumental Grand Tour classical marble torso )
They bought ordinary items directly from artists but also masterpieces from former noble families that had fallen into the hard times. So, the items they purchased represent the best of classical antiquity, Roman art, and renaissance art. The following are some of the common grand tour objects:
Bronzes: The bronzes included sculptured of Greek and Roman gods and goddesses, and ordinary mortals. There were also bronzes of animals, busts, lamp stands, and other figures.
Plaques: Grand tourists also collected micro-mosaic plaques on their journeys. Mostly, these plaques featured wooden frames.
Sculptures: Apart from the bronzes, grand tour objects also included different kinds of sculptures. A good example if the concrete sculpture of Hercules. There were also marble torsos, and busts.
Coins: The collections included coins from all the countries visited by the grand tourists. Since they were made from silver and gold, the coins were precious and still hold great sentimental value today.
Paintings: There were also vast collections of paintings brought back to Britain by the grand tourists and hang in aristocratic homes.
Models: Grand tourists sought not to forget what they had learned about ancient European architecture. So, they collected models of architectural sites such as the Arc De Triumph and the Obelisk.
( Above Photo: Classical Nude Female Venus Statue - Stone )
Bowls, Urns, and Vases: Urns and vases made up a major portion of the grand tour objects. For example, there were marble-based bronze urns, compana bronze urns, marble bowls, tazzas, planters, and volute krater vases.
( Above Photo: Empire Lacquer Pedestal Stands Classical Column Tables )
They shipped the grand tour objects back to Europe and used them as furnishings in stately homes. The objects or souvenirs showed how much the owners appreciated European culture. However, they also acted as symbols of wealth and opulence. They collected different items depending on how wealthy they were.
( Above Photo: Bronze Nude David Statue - Classical Figurine )
Original grand tour objects are available for sale from major antique shops. For a considerable price, you purchase a set of these objects. However, some of the are reproduction of original items, so you should be careful when buying them. Not that reproductions are of poor quality, but they do not represent the sentimental value of genuine antiques.
Are you looking for grand tour objects to buy? You can find a variety of items on our website. Don’t hesitate to contact us for an order.
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