Very rare small chest of drawers in sauteuse from the Régence period.
Curved in front, topped with a remarkable red Griotte de Campan marble, it opens to two large drawers.
Covered, on a frame of fir, with a veneer of rosewood inlaid with leaves in frames, with chevrons on the front, with diamond curves on the sides, it presents particularly elegant curves and curves.
Darkened with brass channels, it is adorned with a high quality ornamentation of chiseled and gilded bronzes: draw knobs with rosettes, keyholes with confronted chimeras, corner falls with empanelled Indian heads (remember that we are in the middle of the era of Louisiana and New France) and slipper shoes.
The frame is made of fir wood, as was the custom of the master cabinetmakers during the Regency period, with a drawer assembly called "fond rampant" on all sides (remember that the rabbeted or recessed assembly, typical of the Parisian masters, is a sign of meticulous workmanship, and has the advantage of allowing the entire drawer to slide along the floor over the entire surface of its bottom, making it unnecessary to install slides and thus sparing the intermediate crossbeam edges any risk of wear in the long run).
This small chest of drawers is fully in line with the transitional period of the Regency, during which flexibility and symmetry will set the tone, balancing the rigor of Louis XIV and the exuberance of Louis XV. Its slightly curved front, its still restrained foot arches, and its delicately arched crosspieces are a perfect illustration of the transition between the two great styles of French furniture.
The model itself, the quality and above all the particular style of its bronzes, which for some of them (see cul-de-lampe in documentation) constitute a real signature (we know indeed that Doirat kept the exclusive property of his models. His inventory after his death mentions both lead models and bronzes stored and more or less ready to be used on furniture / indeed we have never been able to observe this lamp head on a chest of drawers that was not in his hand) allow us to formally attribute this chest of drawers to Etienne Doirat. The absence of a stamp, far from being an embarrassment, is rather to be seen here as a proof of antiquity, since we know that Doirat only started to stamp in the last years of the Regency and that all the first part of his production is not stamped.
To learn more about the cabinetmaker Doirat:
The red Griotte de Campan is one of the most beautiful marbles and, like the red Griotte with which it is confused, it was highly appreciated by the greatest Parisian masters active around the 1700s (Doirat of course, but also André-Charles Boulle and Charles Crescent). These two French marbles take their name from their bright red and dark background, but the first one, quarried in the Campan valley near Bagnères de Luchon, can be recognized by its more numerous white calcite veins and especially by its dark green cement.
"The Campan marble is a type of marble from the quarries of the Campan site located in the upper valley of the Ardour in the Hautes-Pyrénées. This marble comes in several varieties, all identifiable by their green veins, dark and marked: the Campan ribboned, the Campan green, the Campan pink and green, the Campan large mixture and a variety of red Griotte.
Although this material was used as early as the 1st century BC and during the Middle Ages, it was not until Francis I that its production was given a boost. A real jewel, Campan marble is used as a precious stone and decorates the facades of buildings with other polychrome marbles.
Its use reached its peak under Louis XIV, who introduced it in abundance in the Palace of Versailles. Campan marble has a real royal symbolism: the shapes given to it recall a triumphant Antiquity while the material itself evokes a certain national pride... Today, the quarries are closed and classified."
Antiquités Marc Maison - The Blog.
And to learn more about the Griotte de Campan marble: https://www.persee.fr/doc/arsci_0399-1237_2000_num_24_1_993
This chest of drawers is in an exceptional original condition, with all its original bronzes and its two old iron locks operated by a key with an openwork bronze ring.
Perfectly restored and re-varnished by our cabinetmaker.
Parisian work of the Régence period.
8 500 €