Set of four natural, molded and carved beechwood fauteuils à la reine, resting on four curved legs adorned with plant motifs on the foottips and falling stylized shells. The violin-shaped backrest features a heart-shaped cartouche enclosing a pomegranate on the top rail, framed by leafy ornamentation. The shoulders are adorned with acanthus leaves and the lower crosspiece of the back features a carved leaf in its center. The armrests rest on whiplash-shaped brackets, whose molding continues onto the seat rail. The seat crosspiece is decorated with a heart-shaped cartouche in the center, echoing that of the backrest.
Stamped Tilliard (on two of them).
Louis XV period
Restoration, modern upholstery
H. 94 x W. 67 x D. 52 cm
These fauteuils à la reine are typical of Jean-Baptiste I Tilliard's production. They feature the same general proportions as many of his mid-eighteenth-century chairs.
The Louis XV style was then asserting itself, as evidenced by the heart-shaped rocaille cartouche, the most characteristic feature of the Tilliard dynasty's production. With the exception of the Tilliards, who used this motif on many of their seats, few cabinetmakers took up this motif, easily identifiable by its distinctive shape. It has become almost a second Tilliard signature; we find it, for example, on an ottoman in the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, which Tilliard probably delivered to Madame de Pompadour. It can also be found in private collections mentioned by Bill Palot in his book "L'art du siège au XVIIIe".
Another feature of the armchair is the particular care taken with the carved and ornate lower crosspiece of the backrest, which is always the mark of high quality joinery, and is found in the best cabinetmakers. Tilliard's attention to detail can be seen on a pair of armchairs by the carpenter in the Château de Versailles (V4978), or in the Musée du Louvre (OA 6563). A pair of "fauteuils à la reine" reminiscent of our own was sold at Sotheby's in April 2013 (lot 219).
The full Rocaille taste of the armchairs leads us to believe that they are the work of Jean-Baptiste I Tilliard, who was active between 1710 and 1760, while furniture in the Transition or Louis XVI style is attributed to his son.
Jean-Baptiste Tilliard I was active very early in the 18th century: he received his master's degree in 1717, then acquired the title of "Maître Menuisier du Garde Meuble du Roi". He delivered furniture not only for the Crown, but also for the Prince de Soubise, the Duc d'Antin, the Duc de Sully, the Comte d'Évreux, the Duchesses de Parme and de Mazarin. His workshops were extensive, with eleven established craftsmen.
Jean-Baptiste I Tilliard was considered one of the finest craftsmen of his generation. His son, also named Jean-Baptiste, joined him during his apprenticeship, becoming master in 1752. From this date until his father's death in 1766, he worked with him and under his orders, leading to confusion in some attributions, as father and son used the same stamp. Jean-Baptiste II Tilliard took over the entire workshop and inherited the title of "Carpenter to the King's Furniture Guard". His clientele remained particularly prestigious, although he supplied less to the crown than his father. He died in 1798.
3 800 €