Classical elegance with timeless symbolism
For thousands of years people have been fascinated by the rich colours and intoxicating scent of the camellia. In their East Asian homelands the leaves are particularly treasured, as the camellia is a tea bush, whose leaves produce some of the world’s finest black and green teas.
Priceless specimens and its role in cultural history
A particularly exquisite collection of camellias can be found in the Palm House of Vienna’s Schönbrunn Palace. Empress Maria Theresia and her husband Franz I. Stephan were passionate collectors of rare and exotic flora. For a hundred years, these priceless specimens became an expression of the power of the monarchy. To protect them from the severe Austrian winters, Vienna’s impressive Palm House was eventually built. At the time of its completion in 1882, it was the largest greenhouse in the world, and to this day counts itself among the four largest of its kind in Europe.
The euphoric enthusiasm for the camellia in the houses of the aristocracy and bourgeoisie of 19th century Europe helped cement its role in cultural history. While already having been produced as a theatre play, in 1853 Giuseppe Verdi set the novel Camille (La Dame aux Camélias) by Alexandre Dumas to music, creating one of the first modern operas of the day, La traviata. It is now considered one of the most successful operas in the history of music.
Friendship, harmony and beauty
Like the 19th century hothouse flowers, the Camellia Grand Piano is a precious collector’s item. Immerse yourself in its world of opulence and timeless symbolism – the camellia after all stands for friendship, harmony and beauty. The underside of the piano lid is elegantly inlaid in the finest maple, adorned with an intricate design of pink and red camellia. The delicate variations of flowers, leaves and stems are laid in sumptuous veneers of tulip, sycamore, ash and walnut. The highly-skilled application of a traditional sand-shading technique lends this artwork its unique three-dimensional quality. The interior of the piano case and the pin block are equally inlaid in maple. As a finishing touch, even the birdseye-maple music stand takes up the ornamental theme of the camellia flower. Limited to eighteen black-polished 214VC grand pianos, each instrument in this marquetry series is individually numbered, with its own brass plaque.
Collector’s Item Camellia – Classical elegance with timeless symbolism.