Florentine Ebony Carver
Florence, early nineteenth century
Walnut and rosewood
Size: 80 cm High, 160 cm in Diameter
Review by Gherardo Turchi
Greatly preserved, the refined walnut decagon shaped table we’re going to analyse is smoothly enhanced with some high-quality wood inlays.
It’s very likely to be from a Florentine noble family, as its richly elegant inlaid decorations can prove. Each edge of the bright glaze top table is finely adorned with an owl beak looking item.
A frame runs all along the table sides. It’s enriched with some wide hexagon shaped mirror panels adorned with some floral shaped items and round motifs. A few eight-pointed star looking inlays, made of several precious woods, get each panel fancier as well.
The top table is then divided into ten smaller trapezoidal parts, surrounded by two thin frames each. The first is brighter and plainer than the other, thinner and so Byzantine style looking to seem completely symmetric.
A lot of floral and spiral items, recalling some antique cups and anthropomorphic patterns, are close to some dragon, phoenix and seahorse looking elements at the centre of each trapezoidal part.
The inlaid wheel is however thought to be the decoration better enhancing the whole console. Recalling a finely carved wood centrepiece inside two elegant frames, it’s the core of the top table. A tiny cupid, gracefully dancing with a velvet drape, is in the middle of the wheel as well.
We can then appreciate a 10 cm high long-apron, adorned with an inlaid decorative Greek, under the top table. It’s supported by a compact decagonal prism shaped frame resulting in four solid legs. Just over them, a thick round shaped structure – recalling the tambour we can appreciate at Santa Maria Del Fiore church in Florence, for instance – is meant to get the table slender and lighter.
S shaped and finely enhanced with geometrical inlays, just like the ones on the top table, each leg results in a reversed scroll foot.
All the inlaid items are made of several high-quality woods, such as walnut, white poplar, rose and violet.
Structurally well balanced, as the diameter twice as much the height can prove, the refined console table we’ve just analysed recalls the nineteenth century artistic patterns.