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    Sale 7608

    Important European Furniture and Sculpture

    10 July 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 160

    A SET OF FOUR NORTH ITALIAN PARCEL-GILT, LIGHT BLUE-PAINTED WALNUT SIDE-CHAIRS

    LOMBARD, LATE 18TH CENTURY

    Price Realised  

    A SET OF FOUR NORTH ITALIAN PARCEL-GILT, LIGHT BLUE-PAINTED WALNUT SIDE-CHAIRS
    LOMBARD, LATE 18TH CENTURY
    Each with rectangular back and seat covered in white calico, the outscrolled back carved with foliage, above a frieze carved with floral medallions, on turned tapering foliate-wrapped legs headed by rosettes, one inscribed in ink 'teatro S..ffa Lilla', two inscribed 'S..ffa Lilla', each with remains of a blue-bordered paper label inscribed 'No. M/Behren'
    35 in. (89 cm.) high; 19 in. (48 cm.) wide; 17½ in. (44.5 cm.) deep


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    This elegant set of chairs can be related to the oeuvre of the menuisier Agostino Gerli, who flourished in Milan circa 1769 after training in Paris in the atelier of Honoré Guibert. Gerli is recorded as having supplied furniture to Marie-Antoinette for the Petit Trianon, Versailles and is considered, along with the celebrated ornamental designer Giocondo Albertolli, among the precursors of the neoclassical style in Italy.

    A related armchair with outscrolled rectangular back and foliate-carved quiver-shaped legs was made for Eugène de Beauharnais, Viceroy of the Kingdom of Italy and is illustrated in G. Morazzoni, Il Mobile Neoclassico Italiano, Milan, 1955, Pl. CCCV). Among related parcel-gilt and painted walnut examples, a side-chair featuring similar Corinthian capital-headed turned legs is in the Palazzo Reale, Milan (ill. C. Alberici, Il Mobile Lombardo, Milan, 1969, p. 214) and a closely related set of side-chairs with comparable foliate-carved quiver-shaped legs was sold, Sotheby's, London, 4 December 2007, lot 72 (£24,500).

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