A Franco-Flemish double-manual harpsichord,
Detail of the case Bentside decoration 2
The outside of the cheek, bentside and tail are decorated with paintings of putti or cupids engaged in various amorous pursuits which, collectively, might be called The Triumph of Love. Here they can be seen getting some target practice in preparation for shooting some hapless victim and sending him or her into swoons of ardent desire. Other scenes show similar figures engaged, firstly, sharpening their arrows, and, finally, returning from the hunt with their chosen victim pulled along in a chariot.
This detail is of the bentside was originally at the cheek end of the bentside with a vertical line of foliage covering over the physical join in the wood of the bentside at the far left.
The painting has been done in oil, and is painted on a ground of thick gold leaf. This type of decoration was known in the eighteenth-century as ‘vernis martin’ after the Martin brothers who invented and developed this luxurious type of furniture decoration. The putti are remarkably similar to a number of paintings by Boucher in various museums and galleries throughout Europe and North America.