Large chest of drawers in amaranth veneer opening with five drawers in three rows.
Curved model on the front as well as on the sides, decorated with diamond-tipped curls in reserves.
The three top drawers with scalloped cutouts.
The two lower drawers, set back slightly from the frame, simulate a bridge thanks to a judicious rounded cutout of the top drawer.
On the sides, two similar circular arc recesses respond to the bridge effect of the facade.
The S-pillars, strongly arched in concave and convex fashion, become smaller as you descend.
Rich ornamentation of original mercury-gilded bronzes, including twisted drop handles with swirling rosettes, foot slippers, floral lattice chutes on the mounts, shell entrances and an acanthus staple in the low middle.
Thick original Red Flanders marble top with double moldings and shell inclusions.
Interiors of drawers in walnut, frame in conifer.
Very good condition, small restorations.
FM stamped twice on mounts for the cabinetmaker François Mondon. *
Parisian work around 1730-1740.
Width: 150 cm; Depth: 66 cm; Height: 88 cm
Very similar commodes:
- Commode with two layers of drawers bearing the mark of the royal castle of Bellevue, Frankfurt museum Germany
- Commode with three layers of drawers, stamped FM, collection of Dukes of Bedford, Woburn Abbey
- Commode with two layers of drawers from the Gutzwiller collection
-Commode with two layers of drawers, Fraysse auctionApril 9, 2014 (lot 114; 220,000 euros hammer)
* Our chest of drawers has the stamp "FM" identified by Alexandre Pradère as being that used by François Mondon at the very beginning of his career.
We find the same mark on the chest of drawers bearing the inventory number of the Chateau de Bellevue.
François Mondon (1694-1770): This 18th century cabinetmaker comes from a family of craftsmen from Dauphiné dispersed in different regions of France and abroad. He is the great specialist in chests of drawers in the style of the Regency.
We do not know the date of his accession to the master's degree, which is undoubtedly in the 1730s. In his workshop in the rue du Faubourg Saint-Antoine, under the sign "La Pie", he made a number of chests of drawers which are reminiscent of often the pot-bellied models called "tomb" and even chests of drawers with straight uprights in the spirit of Louis XV. He also delivered some of them to his colleague cabinetmaker and dealer Pierre Migeon as well as to the Crown custodian.
Its stamp also appears on some Louis XV furniture of a little more flexible shapes, with two drawers, almost always with an apparent crosspiece, as well as on secretaries, flat desks, desks on a slope but almost not on light furniture.
Always very conservative in its forms as in its decorations, Mondon mainly uses dark veneers of violet or rosewood. His bronzes, discreet or opulent, are inspired by Louis XV or Régence models.
Among its most characteristic models, there are a few chests of drawers with two drawers without crossbar, the first veneered with violet wood and adorned with a rich decoration of rococo bronzes, the second inlaid with grids and a reserve of flowers.
Our opinion :
Power and elegance are the two words that come to mind when we look at our dresser.
Power, for its large size (150 cm), its thick marble and its wide uprights; elegance for the judicious shape of its frame, the cut-out of its drawers or the silkiness of its amaranth wood.
His two words perfectly characterize the Regency style and correspond well to our chest of drawers, which is part of a very small body of furniture by François Mondon, probably made for the crown in the 1730s.
It should be remembered that a chest of drawers with an identical frame but with two drawers bears the same "FM" stamp of the master as well as the inventory number of the Château de Bellevue.
The resemblance to the dresser delivered for Bellevue, today at the Frankfurt Museum and its high quality of execution and decoration suggest that our dresser could have been ordered by an important person, if not by a member of the royal family, at least. by a representative of the nobility who frequented the court and knew the furnishings of the Crown Houses.
Mondon's account book tells us that his best client at this time was the Duchess of Maine, Louise Bénédicte de Bourbon (1676-1753) for whom he delivered many chests of drawers “to the regency”.
Without being able to identify with certainty the model, we find in his inventory after his death in 1753, these commodes by Mondon from the castles of Sceaux, Anet or his Parisian mansion.
It's very probable that the commode of Dukes of Bedford in Woburn Abbey comes also from the post French revolution sales.
The last word that comes to mind to define our commode is "rarity" because only five dressers with this particular form are known, three with two rows of drawers and two with three rows, of which only three, ours , the one from Fraysse auction and the Dukes of Bedford commode have the abbreviated stamp of François Mondon