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Antique "Couleurs Sans Danger" Paint Set

Antique "Couleurs Sans Danger" Paint Set

$175.00

We all know about the hazards of the lead which was once used in paints to create vivid pigments or radiant whites, but lead was actually just the tip of the iceberg. Gorgeously elusive, lush colors were created using pigments containing a host of toxins: arsenic and sulphide, cupric hydrogen arsenite, uranium or perhaps the deadliest formula, arsenic and verdigris, which was known as Paris Green.

Once all these dangers were realized, it was a wonder that anyone picked up a paint brush! It became crucial to find non-toxic ways to create pigments that wouldn't poison the artist and in the mid-1800s, the Parisian art supply company Bourgeois-Aine did just that. Their branding was pretty straight-forward as these children's paint sets were simply called "Colors without Danger".

Found at market outside of Paris, an amazing, unused, 19th-century paint set complete with an assortment of paint cakes and four round porcelain mixing dishes. Under the sliding lid, protecting the contents from breakage, is an original sheet printed with a chinoiserie design and folded to contain bits of shredded tissue paper as packing material.

One-of-a-kind and rare, this fascinating set will bring its distinctive period charms to your home.


Subject to prior sale. Circa 1880. In original antique condition with some of the contents showing the effects of age. 10 1/8" x 6 1/8".

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