William and Mary Oyster Chest

Brought to Scotland by the artisans of Holland in the late 1600s, this example of Dutch marquetry is exceptional in the way different veneers are used to make pictures and designs in wood. One of these is Oyster-work, where small branches are painstakingly cut into slices and fitted together to form intricate geometric designs. Light reflects off the specially cut Oysters, an effect similar to a hologram. Flames shimmer and float in the 700 pieces of hand cut Laburnum and Yew wood of this intricately patterned chest. Although simply and subtly designed, the flowing, beckoning wood grains are mesmerizing.

 

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