A MOLUCCAN RED EBONY CENTRE TABLE WITH MARBLE TOP
The Moluccas/Ambon, third quarter 17th century
Carved in low-relief with decoration of plants and vines, on hammered background, on four spiraling connected legs and bun feet, with brêche d'alep marble top.
H. 74 x W. 83 x D. 71 cm
Ebony furniture with low-relief carving belongs to the earliest type of furniture mentioned in inventories in Batavia. Because of the sparse carving this table is probably not from the Coromandel Coast but could be from Ambon. Similar to other pieces of furniture with low-relief carving from Indonesia as well as India, the background is not smooth but consists of small circles that have been hammered in with a small hollow pipe. The chair the Sultan of Solor presented to the ruler of Tebukan in about 1650 (now in the Museum of World Cultures in Leiden) has the same hammered background. Also the twist-turned legs with the double spiral of uneven thickness is typical for early low-relief furniture made for the Dutch in the Moluccas and the Coromandel Coast.