Picture the rotunda of the Pantheon, with its oculus peeking up at the sky through a concrete dome. The 28 sunken panels, molded into five rings, are called “coffers.”
Wooden – rather than concrete or plaster coffers – were used in the West during the Renaissance in a chateau in the Loire Valley, where wooden ceiling support beams were crossed to make box shapes. A couple of years ago, archaeologists discovered evidence that wooden coffered ceilings existed as far back as ancient Rome. Experimentation with the mathematical tiling of stucco or stone coffers were features of Islamic and Renaissance architecture, sometimes ornamental, sometimes a strategem for reducing the weight of the dome – as was the case with the Pantheon.
Coffers are a element of many traditional homes of the past few centuries, and have become repopularized in more modern designs as a way to add architectural detail and create subtle light play.
This Saratoga Springs family wanted a new kitchen with state-of-the-art appliances and fixtures. They asked Old Saratoga Restorations to bring on the modern, but emphasize the dignity of their home with architectural details such as coffering, custom cabinetry, arches, columns and custom molding.