• 500 Years: Decorative Arts Eur auction at Christies

    Sale 7841

    500 Years: Decorative Arts Europe

    29 April 2010, London, King Street

  • Lot 14

    A CHINESE EXPORT BRASS-MOUNTED INCISED-LACQUER CABINET ON A WILLIAM & MARY GILTWOOD STAND

    LATE 17TH CENTURY, THE STAND ALTERED

    Price Realised  

    A CHINESE EXPORT BRASS-MOUNTED INCISED-LACQUER CABINET ON A WILLIAM & MARY GILTWOOD STAND
    LATE 17TH CENTURY, THE STAND ALTERED
    The doors decorated in polychrome with figures in landscapes, the top with combat groups on horseback, the sides with birds amongst flowers and foliage, enclosing nineteen drawers decorated with flowers, fruit, scrolls and other objects, the pierced and foliate-carved stand with putti and shells on scrolled foliate legs, the giltwood cornice added
    63½ in. (161 cm.) high; 44 in. (112 cm.) wide; 23 in. (58.4 cm.) deep


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    This cabinet is veneered with incised and richly polychromed lacquer which was described by Messrs Stalker and Parker in their Treatise on Japanning and Varnishing, 1688, as 'Bantamwork' and described as being 'very pretty'. The term 'Bantamwork' refers to decoration that is cut into a layer of gesso and then lacquered in colours as opposed to flat lacquer or 'japanned' decoration. The technique consisted of overlaying a base of wood with a series of increasingly fine white clays and fibrous grasses. Over this surface, lacquer was applied and polished before the design was incised and the hollowed out portions filled with colour and gilt and finished with a clear lacquer to protect it. Much of the lacquer was transhipped from China through Coromandel in India, or the Dutch colony Batavia, the former name for Djakarta, Indonesia. Although John Stalker and George Parker used the term 'Bantamwork', the contemporary layman usually called it 'cutt-work', 'cutt Japan' or 'hollow burnt Japan' (see A. Bowett, English Furniture 1660-1714 Woodbridge, 2002, p. 151-3).

    Special Notice

    No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 17.5% will be added to the buyer's premium, which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.


    Provenance

    John Standish Surtees Prendergast Vereker, 6th Viscount Gort, (d.1946), Hamsterley Hall, Co. Durham
    and by descent.


    Pre-Lot Text

    THE PROPERTY OF A LADY