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Author Topic:   coll. gallia
lostwolf01

Posts: 7
Registered: Mar 2005

iconnumber posted 03-11-2005 04:35 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for lostwolf01     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
[26-0202]

On Christofle silver plate, does anybody know what the "coll. gallia" means and the time frame it was used?

Thanks

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Arg(um)entum

Posts: 304
Registered: Apr 2002

iconnumber posted 03-11-2005 07:34 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Arg(um)entum     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I am not sure about silverplate but Christoffle did produce a line of pewter goods under the 'Gallia Metal' name around the turn of the century. Sorry, can't help more.

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Kayvee

Posts: 204
Registered: Oct 2004

iconnumber posted 03-11-2005 11:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kayvee     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It is my understanding that the "Collection Gallia" was first introduced in the 1920's to denote objects designed for Christofle by well-known designers, for example the famous animal knife rests by Sandoz. Collection Gallia objects are considered more prestigious because of the designer connection.

In general when there are questions about silver from an existing manufacturer, a visit to their website can be very helpful. Christofle does answer questions through their site, so you might want to contact them directly for additional information.

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Arg(um)entum

Posts: 304
Registered: Apr 2002

iconnumber posted 03-12-2005 12:16 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Arg(um)entum     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Kayvee,
Do you have any reliable source for 'Gallia'?
I answered based on vague memory and a single note left over from some lengthy exchanges on Christofle and and various metals that we had here a couple of years ago.

As I poked around the net once more I found little that appears dependable. But it does appear that 'Gallia Metal' was used for a cast pewter-like material introduced in the late 1800s. It also seems likely that it was deposited on glass through a galvanic process.

Could they subsequently have used the same name 'Gallia' together with the upmarket 'Collection' for a different series? There are pictures of items that could well be silverplated.

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lostwolf01

Posts: 7
Registered: Mar 2005

iconnumber posted 03-12-2005 08:18 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for lostwolf01     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thank you Kayvee,
I talked to a woman on ebay and she thought the collection gallia was ended in 1938 but I just saw a Christofle bottle opener on ebay commemerating an event in 1971 that has the coll. gallia stamp on it. Very confusing. I will try the Christofle web site. Hopefuly they can shine some light on my openers.

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Arg(um)entum

Posts: 304
Registered: Apr 2002

iconnumber posted 03-12-2005 10:49 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Arg(um)entum     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
lostwolf,
The question that I should have asked to start with: How are your pieces signed? What shape are the marks and what do they contain? A rooster, scale, or ??
In this case even the numbers might add something.

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lostwolf01

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Registered: Mar 2005

iconnumber posted 03-12-2005 01:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for lostwolf01     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Arg,thanks for your interest. I only have five so far. All are signned Christofle over Franc followed by the O(chess knight)C in a square. Then 4 on them have the coll. gallia stamp and 1 does not. No other marks or numbers. None of them have the CC scales mark, I guess they're not old enough. I have qurried the Christofle site but don't have a response yet.

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Kayvee

Posts: 204
Registered: Oct 2004

iconnumber posted 03-12-2005 01:46 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kayvee     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
To answer Arg: there are some things one knows just by osmosis. However, a published reference to the Collection Gallia that immediately comes to hand is from “Ambre et Argent” a book published in 1999 about the Danish designer and silversmith Christian Fjerdingstad. Pages 88-93 detail Fjerdingstad’s association with Christofle between the two World Wars. According to the book, after WW I Christofle wanted to renew and refresh its catalogue. The firm invited a number of artists to design for the firm. These designs were produced as the Collection Gallia. It is my understanding that the Collection Gallia first appeared in the 1920’s, however Lostwolf might get more information from Christofle directly about the genesis and duration of the Collection Gallia. I do know that one of Fjerdingstad’s designs for the collection has been in continuous production since 1935 – a sauce boat and ladle in the shape of a swan with the ladle being the swan’s neck and head. The whole arrangement is very unstable. This is one of Christofle’s most popular wedding gifts, and I’m sure has drenched many an unhappy dinner guest in sauce! I agree that it would be interesting for Lostwolf to discover who designed his Gallia pieces.

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Arg(um)entum

Posts: 304
Registered: Apr 2002

iconnumber posted 03-12-2005 02:05 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Arg(um)entum     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Ah, osmosis! I think it's the result of long and arduous pursuit of knowledge - that which you learned but don't remember where. I haven't really spent any appreciable time on Christofle other the time a couple of years ago when the then moderator of the silverplate forum provoked some of us into a bit of research.

Having now 'poked' around a little more I am leaning more to the view that there are two different 'Gallia' s used by Christofle:

  1. 'Gallia Metal' the pewter like stuff from the late 19th century, identified with a Rooster mark.
  2. the 'Collection Gallia' which dates from later.
But I don't know to which group to assign the piece referenced on the Bröhan-Museum site as:
    'Christofle & Cie., Paris
    Design probably Henri Godin between 1901 and 1909
    Pewter alloy (Gallia metal), cast, silverplate, Cat #349'.
Any thoughts?

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lostwolf01

Posts: 7
Registered: Mar 2005

iconnumber posted 03-12-2005 02:45 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for lostwolf01     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thank you both, Arg and Kayvee, for your interest and help. I also found a thread on this site called "What I did on summer vacation" posted be "Doobees", in June '03 about her visit to the Christofle museum. Printed out all 21 pages, great stuff. Does anyone know what happened to Doobees? She hasn't posted in a long time.

Jerry

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Kayvee

Posts: 204
Registered: Oct 2004

iconnumber posted 03-12-2005 03:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kayvee     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks for introducing me to the Brohan Museum. “Gallia alloy” seems to be gallium, a metal isolated and named by the Frenchman Lecoq de Boisbaudran in 1875. Gallia is of course the Latin name for France. I don’t think there is any link, other than France, for object #349 made of Gallia alloy, and the Gallia Collection.

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Arg(um)entum

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Registered: Apr 2002

iconnumber posted 03-12-2005 09:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Arg(um)entum     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Gallium is a relatively rare metal used in 'high tech' applications.

'Gallia Metal' definitely falls into the category of White Metal, pewter, alfenid, etc.

Here is a mark that I scrounged from somewhere on the net a couple of years ago when we were discussing these metals:

"..any link, other than France, ..."
they do identify it as a Christofle piece.

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lostwolf01

Posts: 7
Registered: Mar 2005

iconnumber posted 03-14-2005 01:55 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for lostwolf01     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I received a reply to my inquiry to Christofle:
Dear Mr Ballinger,

The mark "Coll Gallia" is used by Christofle from 1968 to 1974, normally with the name Cristofle and makers mark.

Gallia was first registered by Christofle in 1898 and designed an alloy of pewter used under plating. From 1900 to 1937, the silverplated items made in Gallia were sold as a separate mark by Christofle and then included in the Christofle catalog.

In any case it's always silverplated pieces.

Yours sincerely
A little dissapointing because it didn't say what "coll. gallia" was used on but at least it dates a lot of items

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salmoned

Posts: 336
Registered: Jan 2005

iconnumber posted 03-15-2005 07:56 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for salmoned     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Huh? It quite clearly states that when the term Gallia is used, it is on Silver-plated Gallia objects, nicht wahr?

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