VENETIAN CHEST OF DRAWERS AND TWO BEDSIDE TABLES
Venice, mid-18th century
Chest of drawers cm 134 x 55 x 86h
Bedside tables cm 56 x 35 x 75h
The architecture of this extraordinary set, moved by a skilful play of undulations, is covered with a spectacular rosewood veneer. The silhouette of the chest of drawers and bedside tables, straight with sinuous supports, has a choppy front with two drawers and concave sides. The shaped tops are in snail marble of gray-green color.
The grace of lacquer and the solemnity of the gilded furniture must not make us forget that, in the 18th century, the prestige of the Venetian maker was also entrusted to thebuilders of polished wooden furniture, this furniture just as beautiful and sometimes more suggestive than the lacquered mobility.
If lacquer was born out of a desire to place on the market substitutes for orientally produced products, which were very expensive and practically impossible to find, natural wood furniture was a spontaneous production in a city where, the techniques of wooden sculpture and intarsio boasted a centuries old tradition. The very difficult art of bending wood, indispensable to the Rococo taste, had been refined through the centuries old research and work of boat builders, but above all of the builders of the most beautiful and complicated boats in the world: gondolas. It is to these masters, that Venetian furniture players must invent the technical means to make their unparalleled objects so rich and varied that they ask many questions to those who try to steal their secrets.
Saul Levy, The Venetian Furniture of the eighteenth century, tav. No 107.
Santini, Mille mobili veneti, p.89, fig. 112.