Rare George II Painted and Giltwood Overmantel Mirror
The rectangular, mercury silvered, plate contained within a finely carved and gilded frame of strap-work with acanthus and scroll cresting and attenuated acanthus scrolls at the corners, in the manner of Giovanni Battista Borra (1713 - 1770) against a rectangular blue/grey painted ground. Bore's most renowned work in England is the Norfolk House Music Room, now on display in V&A Museum, please see image.
England or Ireland. Circa 1755
Width: 114cm / 44.75''
Height: 96cm / 37.50'
Giovanni Battista Borra:
Born in Dogliani. Studying under Bernardo Antonio Vittone from 1733 to 1736. In 1748 he published a handbook on buildings' stability, practical in tone. He met Robert Wood in Rome, and joined his 1750-51 antiquarian expedition to Asia Minor and Syria as its architectural draughtsman before returning with Wood to England. There he used his sketchbooks (now in the library of the Society for the Promotion of Hellenic Studies, London) to produce the original drawings (now in the Royal Institute of British Architects) for Wood's The Ruins of Balbec and The Ruins of Palmyra, and from 1752 to 1760 carried out commissions for English patrons. These works and their images led to motifs from Baalbek and Palmyra becoming fashionable for ceiling and interior decorations in England and Italy (Borra used them, for example, in his own work on the south facade of the Palazzo Isnardi and the interior decoration of its Sala d'Ercole and Sala di Diana, on the piano nobile). He is thought to have died in Turin.
- Norfolk House, St James's Square, London (destroyed in 1938; Music Room reconstructed at the V&A) - Rococo interiors, 1755, commissioned by Mary Howard, Duchess of Norfolk
- Stowe House, interior decoration, commissioned by Richard Grenville, 2nd Earl Temple.
alterations to and execution of Robert Adam's design for the south front
alterations to the garden buildings by John Vanbrugh and James Gibbs, so that they conformed to Grenville's taste
- Guarino Guarini's Castello dei Racconigi, near Turin (1676–83) - remodelling and extension, commissioned by Prince Ludovico di Carignano.
- Piedmontese palazzi, notably the Palazzo Isnardi di Caraglio in Turin (from c. 1766-7), in collaboration with Benedetto Innocente Alfieri
- Piedmontese churches
chapel of Santo Sudario with a Palladian facade for the senate of Nice, 1763
- 1760-1770 - designed fortifications at Alessandria and several Piedmontese hydraulic projects