This spectacular writing desk of Viardot has some functional features: the sides are each composed o two sliding writing surfaces in extension while above a small drawer, the top is decorated with a golden brown leather writing surface. The moulded mahogany top is adorned with decorative motifs at the corners; while openwork bronze plates decorate the belt on either side of the drawers. Naturalistic motifs (flowers and foliage) are also engraved on the tray belt. This large rectangular top is supported by four very elaborate legs: medallions on the upper part represent very stylized lion heads; while the curved legs are sculpted in claws. The borrowing from the Chinese iconography of these "Fo lions" (traditional representation of the guardians since the Han dynasty) reveals the taste of the time for exoticism in the decorative arts.
Gabriel Viardot, emblematic cabinetmaker of the Second Empire, is one of the great interpreters of Sino-Japanese furniture (often made of precious wood as here.) His creations, with their deliberately exotic aesthetic, nevertheless meet the rational needs of a European clientele.
Height: 74.5 cm
Total length: 225 cm
Length (without flaps): 119.5 cm
Price : on request
12 000 €