Maria Gallenga Metallic Griffin Print Cape
Rare Antique 1910’s - 1920’s Maria Gallenga Cape. Exquisitely soft, black panne velvet block printed with gold and silver, mythical griffins and dragons. Long tassels with metallic crocheted knotting. Beautiful craftsmanship with piping along the front edge seams. Lined in tomato-red panne velvet. Darts at the shoulders for fit. From a private collection.
Maria Monaci Gallenga began her career in Florence in 1914. She was known for her use of velvet, a unique block-printing technique and Medieval motifs and patterns. She also had a particular fondness for cloaks and capes.
Mel’s Notes: This piece is unsigned, but the print is an exact match to a signed Gallenga jacket done in the same red as the interior of this one (ref: Whitaker Auctions, November 19th, 2005, Lot 905). The color-way and crocheted metallic and ruched ties reinforce the attribution (ref: Met Museum assescion no. 1991.187.7). A wearable piece of fashion history.
- silk velvet
- excellent condition; velvet is strong and extremely supple; stenciling and colors, bright and crisp; one 1/4 inch wear spot to the interior red velvet near the lower left front (see pics) as well as some minor surface wear at the tips of the red velvet interior; angled seam across the front on both sides where the fabric has been matched as closely as possible - not sure if this was done to keep the pattern on the back of the full sweep as intact as possible (it’s made from a single panel of fabric about 35” across), if it was done as a way to conserve fabric in order to use a single “dye lot” or if it was altered at some point
Fits: XS - S - M - L
14.5 - 15” shoulder / 20” overall front length / 25" overall back length
Model in photo is 5'9" + size XS