Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Global Classic Accessory

12" diameter Bluewater and classic Greenwater Globes, Offered by www.globemakers.com

Being somewhat of a traditionalist when it to comes to all things furniture and interior spaces I always enjoy seeing at least one classic piece in every room.
 When it comes to a library/reading space or a home office its no different, and I think one of the most eye catching & classic accessories is a globe. As well as just another accessory a well made globe can become a family heirloom passed down through future generations.
American Globe on Stand circa 1830, offered by www.susansilverantiques.com

A Little History
 Okay so without getting too technical the 2 most popular types of globe are the terrestrial and the celestial.
The terrestrial globe is a sphere that maps the geological formation of the earth, the average scale for a terrestrial globe is around 5 million.
The celestial globe shows the stars and constellations, they are mapped onto the sphere to show how they appear in the sky at night when viewed from earth.

The oldest surviving globe on record is the "Erdapfel" terrestrial globe dating back to 1492 and accredited to Martin Behaim a German mariner & geographer.

The "Erdafel" circa 1490 by Martin Beheim (Pic courtesy of Pirkheimer) 
Globes Today
Typically today there are mass-produced globes that are plastic spheres covered by a printed paper map and in my opinion more suitable maybe for a child's bedroom or preferably a classroom.
 Then we move into a very different league to globes produced by craftmen using many of the traditional methods that have been around for centuries. The fine papers applied to the spheres are cut into long thin strips that narrow to a point, these are known as "Gores".  Once cut these are laid vertically from the North Pole to the South Pole, then a small round piece of paper is laid at each end to cover any irregularities which inevitably occur. The more "gores" there are the less stretching or crumpling is required to help the paper fit the sphere.
Their mounts either being floor standing or desk size are nearly always made by master cabinet makers. The finished article is usually superb.

A Globe in the process of being restored at Greaves & Thomas

Fully coloured and restored

One of the finest globemakers and globe restorers in the UK and possibly the world is a company called Greaves & Thomas. 
This is a very modest but exceptional company, the quality of both their restoration work and  reproduction work really is second to none hence many of their finest examples sit in museums throughout the world.
Also I have once had the privilege of being invited to their workshops and it was a true learning experience for me.
I want to show just a few of the range they produce including modern and even themed globes, the detail and work involved just fascinates me, I want one to keep !!

Charles Copley's Terrestrial globes enlarged to 21" diameter on reclaimed mahogany stand.
Offered by www.globemakers.com

A wonderfully decorative Greaves & Thomas' hand coloured 33" diameter Alice Globe on Staunton white queen base.
Offered by www.globemakers.com

1 comment:

  1. These look great, way better than those ones you see with the gem stones in them.