PROPERTY OF A NORWEGIAN PRIVATE COLLECTION
This attractive writing desk is an important piece from the Linke workshop and one of the first to incorporate the fluid genius of his sculptor Léon Messagé, recognizable by his crab-like acanthus' mounts, called '2 crosses d'angle' (originally modelled for the firm of Roux et Brunet). The seeds of this innovative interpretation of the rococo style can be seen in a drawing by Messagé, illustrated C. Payne, Linke, pl. 89.
François Linke (1855-1946) who settled in Paris from 1875 and worked with the great German cabinet maker, Emmanuel Zwiener, created the present model as it first appears in his daybooks circa 1890 as Index number 132, 'large' grand desk, though production of the model continued through the beginning of the 20th century. The present example is the more elaborate and larger version of the desk index number 132 than the one sold Christie's New York, 9 April 2016, lot 204.
Other related examples of bureau plat were offered: Sotheby's New York, 29 October 2014, lot 157; Christie's New York, 19 April 2012, lot 578 [$50,000]; and Sotheby's New York, 14 March 1995, lot 129 [$30,000]. A further Index number 132 is further illustrated in C. Payne, François Linke, p. 84. One sold Sotheby's, New York, 26 October 2010, lot 134 [$86,500] is almost identical to our example.
These desks are particularly notable for their truly three-dimensional quality particularly displayed through the profound and monumental sculptural quality of the gilt-bronze mounts.
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