Superb 18th century Italian Cassapanca


A Cassone or "large chest" belonging to rich Italian merchants and aristocrats in the Late Middle Ages was provided with a high paneled back, it evolved into a Cassapanca, "chest-bench", which was the forerunner of the sofa. The Italian Renaissance painted Cassapanca, while functioning as piece of furniture, was also a canvas for the exuberant decoration of painters from the Baroque era. Artists would cover the entire surface of the bench with crests, legendary figures and trompe-l’oeil. This style of painted furniture dates back to the early Renaissance where furniture was painted to portray three dimensional architectural and sculptural elements.