Slant-Front Desk

A work made of marquetry with maple, amaranth, mahogany, and walnut on spruce and oak.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of marquetry with maple, amaranth, mahogany, and walnut on spruce and oak.

Date:

c. 1720

Artist:

Attributed to Heinrich Ludwig Rohde (German, 1683–1755) or Ferdinand Plitzner (German, 1678–1724)
Germany, Mainz

About this artwork

German cabinetmaker Heinrich Ludwig Rohde worked in Mainz, a prosperous university town on the Rhine River. As court cabinetmaker to Elector Lothar Franz Schönborn, Archbishop of Mainz and Prince of the Holy Roman Empire, Rohde was responsible for much of the decoration at the Schönborn’s sumptuous palace at Pommersfelden, from the marquetry floors and mirrored cabinets to the porcelain-decorated rooms.

The marquetry incorporates varieties of wood that would have been readily available in Germany, like maple, walnut, spruce, and oak, as well as costly imported materials like mahogany and amaranth. They are finely pieced together in geometric and naturalistic patterns; at the center of the fall front is a salamander, a creature able reputed by myth to be invulnerable to fire. An unusual motif, it probably held some kind of significance for the desk’s original owner.

— About This Object, European Decorative Arts LaunchPad app

Currently Off View

European Decorative Art

Artist

Heinrich Ludwig Rohde

Title

Slant-Front Desk

Origin

Germany

Date

1715–1725

Medium

Marquetry with maple, amaranth, mahogany, and walnut on spruce and oak

Dimensions

90 × 84 × 44.5 cm (35 7/16 × 33 1/16 × 17 1/2 in.)

Credit Line

Restricted gift of Kathryn Gilbertson, Kay and Frederick Krehbiel, Doris and Stanford Marks, Mrs. Eric Oldberg, Harry Root, and Melinda and Paul Sullivan; through prior acquisition of Robert Allerton; European Decorative Arts Purchase Fund

Reference Number

2006.102

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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