Plaster is made according to a long-known principle. The first application is with rough plaster with a filler of large grain size, and the following layers are successively finer. The last layer in Roman plastering was made of a mixture of lime and crushed marble, which was compacted to become shell-like and thereby watertight. Paint pigments dissolved in water or lime-water was applied on the still wet surface, al fresco, thereby integrating it with the top layer. Once the surface had dried, painting could continue a secco. The preparations could be complex and made in as many as seven layers as explained by Vitruvius. Considering these factors, plasters and wall paintings contain a lot of information regarding technology, craftsmanship, economy and tradition.
This is an unusually large piece of surviving wall plaster and as antiquities for sale go, very collectable.
Condition: As shown. The rear of the piece has been sealed to strengthen it for display. Display stand supplied.
Dimensions: 20cm x 16.5cm approx..
Provenance: Ex. UK auction house. Previously private collection, UK.