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napoleon bonaparte
wife josephine
black lacquer
oil paint
Visually Enhancing Your Home With Framed Art
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In the fourteen years that I've been picture framing, I've framed some pretty interesting items.

One item that sticks out in my memory is a motorcycle panel. The owner of that panel races motorcyles. On one particular race, this racer crashed his bike. The only thing left from his bike was that yellow panel. His friends decided to frame the panel. They all signed the panel, like how you would sign a cast on someone's arm.

I had to build a special shadow box frame for the panel. No ordinary frame would fit on such a bulky item.

Other items I've framed: a koa canoe paddle, christening dress, paper money, to name a few.

In Hawaii it's customary to fold a thousand origami paper cranes, make a design of them, mount the paper birds on black velvet, and frame it in a black lacquer frame. The cranes supposedly bring good fortune to the newlyweds. It's also displayed prominently at the wedding reception.

One of the most mind-blowing item I ever framed was a triptych. What was so mind-blowing about this triptych is they were portraits painted on very, very thin pieces of ivory. The medium used was oil paint. What was so remarkable about these portraits was that they were original paintings of Napoleon Bonaparte, his wife Josephine, and their young son. The portraits were all framed in silver frames, and hinged together.

The customer who brought in the triptych was an older gentleman. He was probably in his 80's. I was dying of curiosity so I asked the customer how he came into possession of this one-of-a-kind art. This is what he told me.

He said that both he and his brother was in the army. They were both in Germany at the end of WWII. While on patrol they came upon the "Eagles Nest", Adolph Hitler's retreat in the Bavarian Alps. That is where the customer found the tryptich.

This is where I had the epiphany. Two world conquerors had this item in their possession!!!!! Now my customer had the item in his possession and I was holding the tryptich in my hands. When I realized the implications and what this all meant I shuddered with disbelief.

I believe an experience like this one, happens only once in a lifetime. Not one, but two notorious leaders owned this piece of art history.

Now an elderly gentleman living in Hawaii owns the tryptich and has it displayed in his home. The reason he brought the tryptich was to replace the mats.


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