Antique 18th Century Religious Hand Carved Tabernacle Door

A beautiful Spanish/Portuguese example, it dates between 1780-1790. It originates from a French collection in the south of France.

The eighteenth century tabernacle doors are smaller than their nineteenth century counterparts. The very simple carving is typical of eighteenth century Spanish or Portuguese religious work. The standing figure of Christ fills the entire door panel. His facial features are minimally presented in carved form while the hair is carved with realism in a flowing manner. His robe folds are visible and deeply carved.

The body has been painted several times over the past 200 years, as has the features of the face. The gilding has a very brilliant patina, and you can see the bits of the red under-paint where the gilding has worn. The background has been hand tooled with horizontal "V" shapes, which give texture and richness. The outer edge has a slight curve (the edge is 1/4" wide). There are two original door mounts; the lock has been removed from the door. The original carved key hole is just to the left of the robe.

The back has been painted blue...there is evidence of glue where fabric would have been mounted in the past. The bare wood is visible where the lock was removed at the back. The back edges and bottom of the door are painted with a flat gold. The door measures: 11 3/4" x 6 1/2" x 1 3/8" thick. The hand carved figure measures 10" tall. It is in very good condition: repainting/gilding throughout it's history, light scratching to face and legs where under paint shows through, re-gilding of curved left side where lock was removed.

It is a handsome depiction of Christ holding the wave sheaf. The sheaf significant for God's people today because it commemorates the ascension of Jesus Christ and His acceptance by the Father as the "first of the firstfruits."

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