• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 7713

    Furniture & Clocks

    23 April 2009, London, King Street

  • Lot 221

    AN ITALIAN MICRO-MOSAIC, SPECIMEN MARBLE AND MAHOGANY CONSOLE

    THE TOP SECOND HALF 18TH CENTURY, THE BASE OF LATER DATE

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    AN ITALIAN MICRO-MOSAIC, SPECIMEN MARBLE AND MAHOGANY CONSOLE
    THE TOP SECOND HALF 18TH CENTURY, THE BASE OF LATER DATE
    The shaped top centred by a micro mosaic panel depicting an exotic bird perched on a branch, within a cube parquetry field inlaid with various hardstones and marbles, including alabaster, lapis lazuli, giallo and giallo tigrato, breccia pavonazza, portasanta, cipollino and granito rosso, within a moulded verde antico border, above a shaped apron carved with scrolling foliage and cabriole legs terminating in volute-carved feet
    33½ in. (85 cm.) high; 44¼ in. (112.5 cm.) wide; 24 in. (61 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

    The magnificent golden marble slab is lozenge-trellised in a varie-coloured mosaic around a tablet, whose minute tesserae depict a trompe l'oeil 17th century print of an exotically plumed parrot; while its serpentined green reed border of verde antico is triumphally arched in the centre in 1770s neoclassical fashion.
    During the second half of the 18th century, this revived 17th century fashion for pietre dura tablets of branch-perched birds was a speciality of Rome-based lapidaries such as the celebrated Giacomo Raffiaelli (d.1836) of the Rue du Babuinon (see J. H. Gabriel, The Gilbert Collection: Micromosaics, London, 2000). A sideboard-table top, likewise encrusted with a bird medallion and almost certainly executed in the same workshops, is amongst the works of art that were almost certainly introduced to Arbury Hall, Warwickshire by the connoisseur Sir Roger Newdigate, 5th Baronet (d.1806) (see S. Pitt, World of Interiors, January 1985, p. 69, fig. 1).

    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.