113
113
A green vernis martin sécretaire à abattant stamped Boudin twice and JME once, Louis XVI, circa 1775
Estimation
50 000100 000
Lot. Vendu 62,500 GBP (Prix d’adjudication avec commission acheteur)
ACCÉDER AU LOT
113
A green vernis martin sécretaire à abattant stamped Boudin twice and JME once, Louis XVI, circa 1775
Estimation
50 000100 000
Lot. Vendu 62,500 GBP (Prix d’adjudication avec commission acheteur)
ACCÉDER AU LOT

Details & Cataloguing

A Mansion - A Private Collection

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A green vernis martin sécretaire à abattant stamped Boudin twice and JME once, Louis XVI, circa 1775
the veined grey and white marble top above canted corners applied with beaded fluting, above a frieze drawer and a band of beaded guilloche and a fall-front opening to reveal a fitted interior with leather inset writing surface and six small drawers veneered in tulipwood and amaranth, with a shelf and three pigeon holes above a pair of doors, the sides similarly mounted to the front with chinoiserie panels depicting figures in landscapes, the canted stiles with an acanthus cast corbel above a ribbon-tied floral and fruiting swag, the front panelled with a rectangle with concave corners, above two doors on bracket feet, the top left inside drawer with the printed paper label FILAINE ET COMPAGN... MARCHANDS Rue S. MARTIN, 23 MAIS 1776: restorations; the gilt-bronze mounts Restauration, circa 1825
142.5cm. high, 82cm. wide, 39.5cm. deep; 4ft. 8¼in., 2ft. 8¼in., 1ft. 3½in.
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Provenance

Acquired by Sir Phillip Sassoon Bt., in October 1924 from L. Kraemer and fils, 2 Rue Tronchet, Paris, (for FF 100,000) for 25 Park Lane, W1 and recorded there in the Library in the pre-1927 and 1939 inventories. It was moved to the White Drawing Room at a later date.   
Thence by descent to his sister the Marchioness of Cholmondeley at Houghton Hall, the Houghton sale, Christie's, London, 8th December 1994, lot 74 (£160,000).
Partridge Fine Arts, London.

Bibliographie

D. Cooper, ed., Great Family Collections, London, 1965, p. 234, (illustrated in situ in the White Dining Room)
G. Worsley, 'Houghton' Country Life, 4th March 1993, p. 53, fig. 9 (illustrated in situ in the White Drawing Room).

Description

Leonard Boudin was not only a prolific ébèniste but also an effective marchand employing a large number of his colleagues such as Topino, Evalde, Denizot, Foullet and the probable maker of this piece, Andre-Louis Gilbert and therefore it is common to find Boudin’s stamp side by side with other ébènistes. He became a master in 1761 and his success led to the opening of a shop in the Palais Royal quarter in 1772. After having worked for ébènistes like Louis Moriez and Gerard Peridiez, Boudin took young talented makers such as Topino under his protection. In 1777 the Almanach du Dauphin notes that “Boudin, rue Traversière, tient un des plus fameux magasins d’ébènisterie et fait des envois en province et chez l’etranger”. Among his clients were the the Prince of Orange, Duchesse d’Arenberg and the Duc de Duras. At the beginning of his career he produced floral marquetry for Migeon and later developed his technique in a distinctive personal style.

Gilbert, who also had a workshop in the same street as Boudin, was primarily known for making furniture with panels of architectural marquetry in both Louis XV and Transitional styles. There are a group of marquetry sécretaries stamped by Gilbert and/or Boudin which relate to the present lot. They share similar channelled friezes, panels with concave angles enclosed within identical cast frames and mounts on the canted angles. These are: - Madame Queniaux, sold Paris, 11th June 1908, lot 132 (ill.) and again in Paris, 6th December 1966, no.67 (ill.), stamped by both Gilbert and Boudin; - Maître Martin sale, Versailles, 11th November 1976, lot 152 (ill.), stamped by both Gilbert and Boudin;  Sale in Paris, 20th November 1933, lot 116 (ill.) attributed to Gilbert; Anonymous sale, Sotheby’s Monaco, 23rd June 1985, lot 787 (ill.), stamped Boudin; A secrétaire recorded in the art market in 1971, stamped Gilbert.

The marchand-mercier label for Filaine et Compagnie in this piece indicates a date of around 1775, as Monsieur Filaine owed Boudin the large sum of 12,578 livres due by August 1775, but only paid towards the end of the following year.

The lacquer panels in this secrétaire have been previously attributed to the famous Martin brothers, who have given their name to the technique of vernis Martin. Nevertheless, it is possible that these panels are rare examples of distemper paintings produced in Canton in the second half of the 18th century, a hypothesis suggested by Thibaut Wolvesperges (Le meuble français en laque au XVIIIe siècle, Paris, 2000, p. 48). Other secrétaires are known with similar decoration, such as lot 34 by Pierre Macret, in the Houghton Sale.

Sir Philip Sassoon, Bt (1888-1939) was a British politician and a renowned art collector, and a member of the two most influential Jewish families of the 19th century, the Sassoons and Rothschilds. In his residences at Park Lane in London, Port Lympne Mansion, Kent and Trent Park, Hertfordshire, he created lavish settings with English and French art and entertained many celebrity friends. His sister Sybil married the future Marquess of Cholmondeley and part of Philip’s collection later entered the Houghton collections.

A Mansion - A Private Collection

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