Alvar Gonzalez-Palacios, Il Tempio del Gusto, La Toscana e l'Italia Settentrional, Vol. II, Milan, 1986, p. 206 fig. 387, for a table top ante 1841 and fig. 388, ante 1841 reproduced here in fig 1, for another table top both in the Galleria d'Arte Moderna, Firenze. Also see pp. 210-211 for other related table tops by these makers.
These tables combining exotic materials with superbly executed marquetry are almost certainly attributable to the Falcini brothers, Luigi and Angiolo Falcini (fl. 1836-69).
The brothers Luigi and Angiolo Falcini were active in Florence and were celebrated restorers of Renaissance and baroque marquetry as well executing pieces in marquetry themselves. Whilst Lombardy enjoyed the success in the late 18th century of makers such as Maggiolini and Maffezzoli, Florence's output of inlaid furniture had almost ceased since the flourishing output of Leonardo van der Vinne in the early 17th century. The Falcini brothers revitalised this technique. They were known for their elegant designs inspired by the Renaissance and their superbly executed inlaid work. They supplied the octagonal table for Leopold of II, Granduke of Tuscany in 1839.
Their inlay reflected the work produced by the Opificio delle Pietre Dure, with its flowers, foliage and birds. They also exhibited at the great Exhibition in London in 1851 to great acclaim. There are several tables by the Falcini brothers in Palazzo Pitti, Florence.
Further tables sold by the brothers at auction include:
-a table sold in these Rooms, as lot 311, 4th November 1988
-an octagonal table sold in these Rooms as lot 16, 2nd April 1993
-a rectangular table sold in these Rooms, as lot 296, 3rd October 1997.
An octagonal inlaid table attributed to them was sold as lot 246, Christie's, London, 15th December 1994.
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