• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 7608

    Important European Furniture and Sculpture

    10 July 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 36

    A NORTH ITALIAN WALNUT AND FRUITWOOD MARQUETRY AND PARQUETRY BOMBE COMMODE

    CREMONA, ATTRIBUTED TO GAETANO CORVI, LAST QUARTER 18TH CENTURY

    Price Realised  

    A NORTH ITALIAN WALNUT AND FRUITWOOD MARQUETRY AND PARQUETRY BOMBE COMMODE
    CREMONA, ATTRIBUTED TO GAETANO CORVI, LAST QUARTER 18TH CENTURY
    Decorated overall with cube parquetry, the shaped rectangular top centred by a violin, a bow and music sheets, above three shaped drawers inlaid sans traverse with a ribbon-tied circular medallion depicting a landscape with classical ruins, the angles banded with rope-twist, the shaped sides centred by classical urns, on shaped feet, the interior inscribed in black ink reading 'Gaeta. Corvj fece. Cremona 1781. Di dietro a S. Domenico', remounted
    35¾ in. (91 cm.) high; 53 in. (134.5 cm.) wide; 24¾ in. (63 cm.) deep


    Contact Client Service
    • info@christies.com

    • New York +1 212 636 2000

    • London +44 (0)20 7839 9060

    • Hong Kong +852 2760 1766

    • Shanghai +86 21 6355 1766

    Produced in Cremona, Lombardy, this commode is signed by Gaetano Corvi and dated 1781. This cabinet maker seems to be unrecorded, however, as the label indicates, it can be assumed that his atelier was located near the church of San Domenico. From the 16th century, Cremona was renowned as a centre of musical instrument manufacture, counting the Amati family, a dynasty of violin producers, as well as Guarneri and the celebrated Antonio Stradivari (1644-1737) among its most distinguished citizens. In 1680 Stradivari settled in the Piazza San Domenico and his fame as an instrument-maker was quickly established.

    This commode is somewhat related to the bombé-shaped marquetry and parquetry commodes of the early production of the master of Italian cabinet-making of the second half of the 18th century, Giuseppe Maggiolini. Its exaggerated rococo bombé shape is contrasted by the neoclassical style of the marquetry and parquetry. Musical instruments and musical trophies were often depicted in marquetry, and related marquetry include a top illustrated in E. Colle, Il Mobile Rococò in Italia, Milano, 2003, p. 396, and for a later neoclassical interpretation see the inlaid top of a centre table signed by Abbiati Mandello (illustrated in C. Alberici, Il Mobile Lombardo, Milan, 1969, p. 192-193).

    Special Notice

    No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 15% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.