Auction 124, Lot 733

"[Lot of 2] Decoration de Theatre Representant les jardins de Circe Magicienne Femme de Minos [and] Secunda Fontana Labyrinthis. La Seconde Bassin du Labyrinthe. La Seconda Fontana del Laberinto. Zweytes Lust Bassein des Irrgartens",

Subject: Miscellaneous

Period: 1770 (circa)


Color: Hand Color

18 x 9.5 inches
45.7 x 24.1 cm

Optical prints (or vue d’optique) were made to be viewed in a special apparatus that provided the viewer with an illusion of depth (early 3-D). The large mirror employed in the viewing machine showed the image reversed so many of these views have the titles and information engraved forward and backwards to facilitate viewing in the machine or by hand. These prints were only produced for a short period of time (1740 to 1790) and then were replaced with the invention of the smaller steroviewer. These views are some of the most distinctive and interesting images of the eighteenth century, and their distinctive engraving style, striking perspective and bright original color makes them as visually delightful as they are historically fascinating.

Pair of attractive optical views. First depicts a theatrical setting made to look like the garden of Circe the enchantress, shown here with Odysseus and a few of his men, already changed into swine, bears and a lion. The second picturesque view features an elaborate group of central fountains set within a large garden labyrinth.


Condition: B+

Sound sheets with some minor spots and creases. The margins have some soil and a couple of binding holes, not affecting the views.

Estimate: $200 - $250


Closed on 5/7/2008