This Circa 1925, Italian bench was crafted in the early part of the twentieth century in the Florence workshop of P. Mazzetti. Beautifully molded plaster of Paris sphinx statues support the two pine slats. Plaster of Paris is a quick-setting gypsum plaster known since ancient times as Plaster of Paris due to its abundance being found near Paris.
These two sphinxes have been elegantly crafted. Throughout history, many ancient cultures used the sphinx in their imagery. Greek mythology chronicled the Sphinx as being the daughter of Orthous and Chimera or Laius and attributed the riddles, which she proposed, as having been taught to her by the Muses. She kills and eats, those who fail to answer her riddle as commanded by Hera. These creatures became symbols of power and guardianship. The artist who created the molds for these sphinxes paid special attention to the detail in their hair, the individual feathers in their wings, and their lion-like bodies. The two long pine slats create the seat and back of this bench. Pine is a durable wood type that was utilized often in the 20th century. This bench evokes imagery of escaping into a secret garden while being guarded by these majestical magical creatures.
H=37 in. W=82 in. D=33 in. 400 lbs.
Seat H=19 in. W=65 in. D=11 in.