Chinoiserie Mirror Frame


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Luca Spini


Luca Spini

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The Lacche Veneziane  or Chinoiserie/Japannerie styles are an European tradition, not to be confused with the  import of furniture from China. Here is a short outline of such tradition.

The fascination for oriental objects and furniture took hold of European sovereigns and princes in the 18th Century. 

In the palaces of the nobles, lounges, entire pavilions and Cabinet de Chinoiserie were set up.  Later, skilful  started making   sideboards, wardrobes, mirrors, chests of drawers. The Martin brothers from Paris and the Venetian “depentori” (painters) managed to reproduce the complex lacquers made of many glazes and complex “pastiglia” decorations, that is in relief.

Handpainted Mirrors and furniture
Handpainting. It’s tailored made.

The aesthetic is oriental but the tradition is entirely Italian. As a matter of fact, the decorative elements draw inspiration from Chinese motifs but are enriched with Venetian themes and often painted in  Venetian-style furniture and mirrors. We rediscovered such tradition not only in the decorations but also in the technique, entirely manual, leaving it unchanged.

Lacche Veneziane have basic finishes, black, red, green and blue and their multi-tone effects are the result of eight glazes obtained with  and natural products (argilla, wax etc.), while the decorations are in gold or silver leaf with colored shades. This way we obtain that “luminous splendor” indicated as the main feature of the Eighteenth-Century interiors.

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