Amongst new stock this week is this stunning Italian rosewood commode, with finely designed marquetry work. Dating from about 1790, it is decorated with neo-classical urns, flowers and swags in the manner of Giuseppe Maggiolini. Comprising three long drawers, it has a quartered veneered top, front and sides, with well executed marquetry roundels and decorative crossbanding. With wonderful colour and patina, it even features its original key.
The name Maggiolini became widely associated with all furniture decorated with wood inlay in late 18th and early 19th century Italy. He created masterpieces of illusions: bouquets, classical architecture, musical instruments, ribbons, and fruit, composed of arrangements of various stained or naturally coloured woods. His designs were so famous that during his own lifetime his work was widely copied.
Giuseppe Maggiolini began his career as a carpenter in a Cistercian monastery and established his own workshop when he was twenty. In 1771 he began working for Archduke Ferdinand of Austria, Governor General of Lombardy. In addition to serving the court of Milan, Maggiolini created pieces for other European royalty including the king of Poland, Empress Maria Theresa of Austria, the duchess of Austria, and Napoleon’s widow, Empress Maria Luisa.