11138

AN EXTRAORDINARY POLYCHROME PAINTED AND PARCEL GILT CABINET

Probably Italian. Nineteenth Century.

Measurements

Height 68 1/2" (1.74 m); Width 55" (1.39 m); Depth: 21" (53.4 cm).

Research
Of carved and polychrome painted wood. The molded rectangular cornice above a pair of cupboard doors and sides with panels decorated with high-relief trompe l’oeil objects including books, scrolls and maps incorporating elements of real prints and book bindings, papier maché apothecary jars, orrery, columns and obelisks, and applied carved wooden keys. The doors lined with printed paper depicting geometric diagrams and scientific flasks, the interior fitted with glass shelves. The whole raised on bracket feet. Backboard replaced. Old repairs and replacements to carcass.  Electrical lighting strips present.

This unusual cabinet is mounted with polychrome carved reliefs and trompe l’oeil appliques depicting apothecarial and antiquarian objects, imitating what might be found in the study of an eccentric collector or scholar, or even an alchemist. The door and side panels of the cabinet simulate shelves, each containing a curious combination of the following objects:

Books:
Biblioteca cristiano-filosofica, Twelve Volumes
Gli Animale Parlanti, Poema Epica by Giambattista Casti, 1802, Tomes 4 and 5
Oeuvres de Fonten, Tome I
Four notebooks labeled Méthode
Two volumes of L’Exalte by Picard
Two volumes of Isnardo O Il Milite Romano
Eight volumes entitled Satire
Paolo de Conti di Camisano, Volumes 1-4
Four folios labeled A.D. 1763, A.D. 1764,  A.D. 1765, and A.D. 1766
Mémoires du Cardinal Dubois, Volumes 3 and 4
An open book depicting various diagrams concerning pressure and buoyancy
An open book depicting various diagrams concerning scales and temperature

Apothecary Jars:
Acqua di Cedro
Acqua Ardente
Acqua Rosmarino
Acqua  di Malva
Acqua di Sorbo
Acqua di Polla
Acqua Regia
Acqua di Solfo
Papaver
Cassia

Objets d’art:
An orrery
A pair of miniature “marble” obelisks
A pair of miniature “marble” columns
An unusual “marble” clock adorned with figures of cupid
Four Jars, each bearing a portrait: a nobleman, two noblewomen, and a clergyman
Four keys and four metal “tools”
Two folders holding several rectangular paper cards on which appears to be a number game.
Scrolled maps of Italy, Poland, Russia, and Europe

Full research report available on request.