• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 7745

    Important European Furniture, Sculpture & Clocks

    9 July 2009, London, King Street

  • Lot 124

    A PAIR OF ITALIAN ORMOLU-MOUNTED ROSEWOOD, WALNUT AND FRUITWOOD COMMODES

    CIRCA 1800, PROBABLY ROME

    Price Realised  

    A PAIR OF ITALIAN ORMOLU-MOUNTED ROSEWOOD, WALNUT AND FRUITWOOD COMMODES
    CIRCA 1800, PROBABLY ROME
    Each with a rectangular crossbanded top mounted with a pierced border, above a frieze drawer and a large drawer mounted with Bacchic masks handles and concealing a further long drawer, the angles with simulated fluting, on beaded square tapering legs terminating in block feet
    37 in. (94 cm.) high; 55½ in. (141 cm.) wide; 24 in. (61 cm.) deep (2)


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    This pair of neoclassical commodes with their strikingly contrasting veneers and pure lines is typical of the avant garde Roman production of the early 19th century. The handles modelled as Etruscan masks are particularly reminiscent of Luigi Valadier's designs of the last quarter of the 18th century, at which time he was working on the renovation of the interiors of the Villa Borghese, Rome. Valadier's designs include a related study for a commode that can be dated circa 1780 (see A. Gonzàlez-Palacios, Il Gusto dei Principi, vol.II, ill.458, p.231).

    The pierced ormolu border of the top, as well as the gilt-metal beading on the handles and legs are, however, a feature more typical for Spanish furniture produced during the reign of Carlos IV, suggesting the commodes might not be Italian after all.

    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.


    Pre-Lot Text

    THE PROPERTY OF A LADY
    (LOTS 122-124)