Known in France as a “garde-corps” and measuring almost 12 feet long, this impressive wrought iron grill was installed on a Paris balcony during the late 1800’s. The iron has been painted black and embellished with large, gilded rosettes nestled amongst the open scrollwork.
A large, oval cartouche is centered on the front of the ironwork. Two concentric ovals are joined by a series of small roundels. A pair of closed acanthus leaves emanate from the top and bottom of the innermost oval. On the other side of the outer oval is a pair of open roundels, each affixed to a pair of volute scrolls that spreads horizontally into large volute scrolls. The center of the large volute spirals and the terminals are adorned by gilded rosettes with leaves arranged in a spiral fashion around a cupped flower.
Both sides of the cartouche feature similar ironwork consisting of a pair of closed acanthus leaves set inside two ovals. The elements are surrounded by a rectangle with canted corners. All three of these middle section cartouches are bordered by open geometric shapes (rectangles and circles). The upper trim is topped by a gilded rail with three layers of thin molding that extends beyond the iron below.
This wrought iron balcony grill from France can be installed on an existing house or a new construction project. It can also be re-purposed into a fantastic iron console table. New, simple iron bars could be added to make the sides. Another option is to cut the left and right sections of the facade and use them as the side pieces. This would make for a console table length of roughly 102.5 inches. The console could then be topped with stone, marble, glass, or wood.
CONDITION: Good antique condition with minor rubs, scratches, and losses to gilding. One rosette on the back side has a bend. Light buildup and loss of paint to non-gilded iron.