With its bold rosette pattern and sophisticated inlaid geomtric motifs, this superb pair of comodini relate to the oeuvre of the celebrated Milanese cabinet-maker Giuseppe Maggiolini (1793-1814), who was styled 'Intarsiatore delle Altezze Reali' due to his virtuose 'pictures' in wood. Maggiolini developed various elaborate neo-classical marquetry patterns, often centred around a central lozenge or roundel, some of which were based on designs by Giuseppe Levati (1738-1828) (G. Morazzoni, Il Mobile Intarsiato di Giuseppe Maggiolini, Milan, 1957, figs. VII, IX, LXIV and LXIX and G. Beretti, Giuseppe e Carlo Francesco Maggiolini, L'Officina del Neoclassicismo, Milan, 1994, pp. 90-91.
However, various differences in the execution of the marquetry, as well as the use of characteristic spirally-fluted carved legs, suggest that the present comodini were executed in a different cabinet-making centre, most probably Genoa, where Neo-classical marquetry furniture of a particularly high standard was being made in the late 18th century and was closely related to, and almost certainly directly inspired by, the work of Maggiolini. A related bureau with identical legs and rosettes to the frieze and undoubtedly by the same maker, is illustrated in A. Gonzalez-Palacios, Il Mobile in Liguria, Genoa, 1996, p. 283, fig. 332.
The fine quality of the marquetry and veneers of these comodini are striking confirmation of the importance of the finest Genoese craftsmanship in the pantheon of Italian cabinet making.