ITALIAN STYLE “BARGUEÑO”, TORTOISESHELL, 17TH CENTURY.

Antiques - Furniture
Reference: Z5732

Italian-style cabinet, tortoiseshell decoration, 17th century.
Uncovered sample desk located on claws with a rectangular ball. The front presents the advanced and prominent central area, with a chapel; the sides each have ten drawers with a key lock arranged in two lines; The work is finished off by a corridor adorned with a railing of vegetal scrolls topped with birds on vases. The center of the front presents architectural decoration: base and pedestals for the four columns that flank the central niche with sculpture, and an upper entablature crowned by a railing and ornate plates with motifs of cherubs and plants in gilt metal; When the chapel is opened, a series of drawers are discovered decorated on their fronts with geometric inlay.
The general scheme of the furniture responds to a very widespread and valued model in seventeenth-century Europe of which the best examples have been, as a rule, those of Italian manufacture. Many of the decorative motifs of the work respond to this influence, such as the head of a winged angel or the grotesques, while others are very commonly used throughout the continent throughout that century, such as the bird's claws synthesized on a ball or concentration of decoration in the sample. In Spain, this Italian-influenced desk coexisted throughout the seventeenth century with the more traditional cabinet, with which less decorative and material displays were usually associated. However, this typology would be so appreciated that its compositional clarity would not break until the entrance of the Rococo in the 18th century.
The practice of using tortoiseshell plates in furniture resurfaced in Europe during the 17th century. The high price and great demand for furniture with sea turtle shell are explained by the scarcity of the material, which was essential to import (usually from Central America) and that, for its work, a highly specialized workforce was required. As is normal for this type of furniture, also called "wastebaskets" because they contain important documents, the tortoiseshell plates were often highlighted with gilt metal decorations, the use of bronze being very normal for this."


· Size: 116x90x46 cms.

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