Width 40cm Depth 17,5cm Height 106cm
The predominance of France in the decorative arts in the 18th century is indisputable. Watchmaking is one of them. If the Swiss watchmakers were already active, the ornamental work in France is without comparison. The richness of the vocabulary also attests to an astonishing creation in the field of furniture as well as in that of watchmaking:
"Pendules" are clocks designed to be placed on a piece of furniture or a fireplace. The "Regulateurs" or "Horloges de parquet", were intended to rest on the ground. The word "Cartel" characterizes the clocks intended to be hung on the wall. It seems that some smaller "cartels", were intended to rest on a desk or a cardboard box. But it should not be overlooked that many cartels, originally made up of their 3 original parts (body, capital and base) have lost their base over the centuries. It is therefore necessary to beware of certain cartels called "Cartel à poser" which have in fact simply lost their base.
Our Cartel is a very beautiful example of the Boulle technique, circa 1710 / 1720. Boulle marquetry consists of engraved brass inlays (copper alloy) on a tortoiseshell base. Some Boulle marquetry (called "contrepartie") has tortoiseshell inlays on a brass bottom.
This cartel is complete with its three original parts. The inlaid brass interlacing has retained much of its original engraving, which is particularly rare. The marquetry presents arabesque, scrolls, and mantling motifs, inspired by the decorations of the ornamentalist Jean Bérain (1638-1711).
The original bronze ornamentation is of great richness. The chiseling is very well worked. The clockwork movement, also original, has a dial with 12 enamels with in its center a superb chiselled and gilded bronze plate. The back door is beautifully decorated with a Boulle marquetry as well.
Note the elegance of this cartel characterized by taut lines, low depth, and perfect proportions. The decorative repertoire of the bronzes is inspired by the reign of Louis XIV (gadroons, Indian heads...) even if we also find more modern attributes such as the acanthus leaves announcing the Regency style. This cartel has been perfectly restored by five specialized craftsmen, cabinetmaker, marker, bronzier, watchmaker and enameller. It is in working order, and rings out the hours and a half.