View 1 of Lot 38. AN ITALIAN GILT-BRONZE AND PIETRE DURE MOUNTED EBONY CABINET, BY GIOVANNI BATTISTA GATTI (1816-89), ROME THIRD QUARTER 19TH CENTURY.
View 1 of Lot 38. AN ITALIAN GILT-BRONZE AND PIETRE DURE MOUNTED EBONY CABINET, BY GIOVANNI BATTISTA GATTI (1816-89), ROME THIRD QUARTER 19TH CENTURY.
38

AN ITALIAN GILT-BRONZE AND PIETRE DURE MOUNTED EBONY CABINET, BY GIOVANNI BATTISTA GATTI (1816-89), ROME THIRD QUARTER 19TH CENTURY

Estimate:

15,000 - 20,000 GBP

AN ITALIAN GILT-BRONZE AND PIETRE DURE MOUNTED EBONY CABINET, BY GIOVANNI BATTISTA GATTI (1816-89), ROME THIRD QUARTER 19TH CENTURY

AN ITALIAN GILT-BRONZE AND PIETRE DURE MOUNTED EBONY CABINET, BY GIOVANNI BATTISTA GATTI (1816-89), ROME THIRD QUARTER 19TH CENTURY

Estimate:

15,000 - 20,000 GBP

Lot sold:

21,250

GBP

AN ITALIAN GILT-BRONZE AND PIETRE DURE MOUNTED EBONY CABINET, BY GIOVANNI BATTISTA GATTI (1816-89), ROME THIRD QUARTER 19TH CENTURY


inlaid with lapis lazuli, red porphyry, verde antico, giallo antico, rosso antico, and jasper panels, opening to reveal twelve drawers, label to the back of top central drawer 'Cav. Gio. Battista Gatti, Intarsiatore in Avorio, Ebano, Pietre dure, etc. Via Sistina N⁰. 47.'

90cm. high, 132cm. wide, 42cm. deep; 2ft. 11½in., 4ft. 4in., 1ft. 4½in.

The handles of the central niche drawers have ivory. Due to recent changes in the laws of many countries (e.g. US, France) Sotheby’s recommends that buyers check with their own government regarding any importation requirements prior to placing a bid. Please note that Sotheby’s will not assist buyers with the shipment of this lot into the US. A buyer’s inability to export or import these lots cannot justify a delay in payment or sale cancellation.

Working in the Renaissance Revival manner specialising in marquetry and inlay details, Giovanni Battista Gatti (1816-1889) and his Italian contemporaries helped to establish this style as a dominant aesthetic force in the 1860's and 1870's. Gatti was born in Florence where he became apprenticed to the brothers Luigi and Angelo Falcini who specialised in marquetry. Having studied in Rome and Florence, he worked as a journey-man cabinet-maker before establishing his own workshop at Faenza in the 1870's.


He enjoyed the support of imperial, aristocratic and ecclesiastical patrons in Europe including the Austrian Emperor, the Duke of Hamilton and Cardinal Amant, and was also popular amongst American industrial collectors such as Wright E. Post and William Gilstrap. Examples of his work are found not only in the Victorian and Albert Museum, but also in the Nelson-Atkins Museum, Kansas City, and the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. Gatti, whose name translates from the Italian as 'cats', sometimes signed his works with the rebus of a cat's face.


There is no equivalent to this present cabinet by Gatti so far recorded. While his ebony furniture pieces inlaid with ivory are far more known, like his contemporary Ferdinando Pogliani (1832-1899), he did make use of hardstones, principally of lapis lazuli, for instance used for columns and small hardstone roundels on a cabinet offered Sotheby's London, 7 November 1985, lot 513. A more extensive use of hardstones is encountered through a mirror frame sold Sotheby's London, Arts of Europe, 4 December 2012, lot 315, comprising Egyptian porphyry, lapis lazuli, green porphyry and jaspers.


Gatti's spectacular inlaid exhibition pieces gained him numerous awards at Europe's burgeoning international industrial and cultural expos: at the 'Paris Expositions Universelles' (First Class Medal 1855; diplôme d'honneur, 1867; Gold Medal 1878) and at 'Vienna's Internationalische Ausstellung' (1873).