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Objet d'art (French: [ɔb.ʒɛ d‿aʁ]; plural objets d'art) literally means "art object" (or work of art) in French, but in practice, the term has long been reserved in English to describe works of art that are not paintings, large or medium-sized sculptures, prints, or drawings. It therefore covers a wide range of works, usually small and three-dimensional, of high quality and finish in areas of the decorative arts, such as metalwork items, with or without enamel, small carvings, statuettes and plaquettes in any material, including engraved gems, hardstone carvings, ivory carvings and similar items, non-utilitarian porcelain and glass, and a vast range of objects that would also be classed as antiques (or indeed antiquities), such as small clocks, watches, gold boxes, and sometimes textiles, especially tapestries. Books with fine bookbindings might be included.

The term is somewhat flexible, and is often used as a broad term for "everything else" after major categories have been dealt with. Thus the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich, London describes its collection as follows: "The National Maritime Museum's collection of objet d’art comprises over 800 objects. These are mostly small decorative art items that fall outside the scope of the Museum’s ceramic, plate, textiles and glass collections." The items illustrated on their website (all with maritime associations) include metal curtain ties, a "lacquered papier-maché tray", tapestries, small boxes for tobacco, snuff, cosmetics, and other purposes, cut-paper pictures (découpage), small silver items, miniature paintings, a "Gilt-brass clock finial", ceramic plaques, statuettes, cigarette boxes, plaquettes, a painted tray, a horse brass, a metal "pipe tamper", a small glass painting, a fan, a handle plate from furniture, and various other items.[1]

See also