PROPERTY OF A EUROPEAN PRIVATE COLLECTOR TOGETHER WITH LOTS 3, 4,5, 64, 67, 68 AND 69
The painted panels on this cabinet share strong stylistic and technical similarities to a recorded series of glass panels with figures (also mounted on a cabinet) painted in the verre eglomisé technique which are signed by or attributed to the monogamist VBL, details of whom are obscure (Neapolitan or North European). For a discussion of the works of this maker, see Alvar González-Palacios, II Gusto dei Principi, Milano, 1993, pp. 133-137 pl. 194-213. See also an article by the same author in the Journal of the Furniture History Society, n. XXI, 1985, where another cabinet is discussed on pps. 11-15.
The present series of panels fall into the category of works where VBL painted figures on a blue ground with generous use of gold on drapery and other details rather than floral motifs, grotesques, trophies or Emperor's profiles on a gold ground.
The fashion for these tortoiseshell and faux tortoiseshell cabinets was very much in evidence in Naples and Spain. It is known that VBL worked in Naples in the second quarter of the 17th century where the technique of painting on glass was well established and very much sought after by the Neapolitan nobility.
Although VBL was known for allegorical figures, most of his recorded repertory was biblical figures. Many of these cabinets mostly inset into an ebony carcass, are found in Neapolitan inventories.
Another Neapolitan cabinet with painted panels of Neapolitan sovereigns attributed to VBL, also discussed by Alvar González-Palacios, was sold by Christie's, Rome, lot 201, 27th& 28th November 1989. A pair of cabinets with painted panels possibly also by VBL, was sold by Sotheby's Monaco, 22nd April 1989, lot 266. Also see another cabinet with panels possibly by VBL, sold in these Rooms, lot 45, 8th December 1995.
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