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Treasure Hunters

by E.S. Jones

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During London’s celebrations this weekend, take a detour from your Easter Egg Hunts to admire our window display at Hay Hill Gallery. Discover some true treasures- not your average foil wrapped prizes- but beautiful miniatures that follow an ancient Ukranian folk tradition. Pictured is one of these ornate objects that was presented to Queen Elizabeth II in 2010. This iconic piece featured in Debrett’s The Queen The Diamond Jubilee publication, and is based on Sir Cecil Beaton’s 1953 wonderfully glittery portrait of our monarch in her coronation regalia.

Created from Linden tree wood and decorated with gold leaf, these objets d’art use the same oil painting techniques pioneered by Leonardo da Vinci in 1498. Each oval is a flawless canvas for a well loved masterpiece, breathtaking depictions of biblical figures that instill a sense of wonder- and perhaps remind us of the story behind it all. Taking up to a year and a half to complete, the finished artworks are protected by twenty individual layers of lacquer to preserve their luminosity. This meticulous attention to detail emphasises the idea of a wider vision, and the ultimate fulfillment of the promise ‘that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion’ (Philippians 1v6). In a society where the desire for self-improvement can become all consuming, this is a good time to pause, to appreciate the work in progress. You may find compassion for own imperfections in the realisation that ‘I am not finished yet!’

Happy treasure hunting! (And may you find what you are really looking for)…