This armchair’s extremely innovative design is imbued with 1760s Neoclassicism and shows the aesthetic research that characterizes the new style, elaborated from projects by architects and ornamentalists such as Jean-François Neufforge, Jean-Charles Delafosse and Jean-Louis Prieur.
In carpentry, the style à la Grecque
gave birth to wide shapes, very architectured, outlined by vanguard sculptural motifs, such as the roundels here. Among the pioneering carpenters in this field are Louis Delanois, Nicolas Heurtaut, Jean-Jacques Pothier and Mathieu De Bauve.
The production of the latter is distinguished by patterns of a radical novelty. After his apprenticeship with Nicolas-Quinibert Foliot and his accession to master status in 1754, he set up his workshop under the sign of "Saint-Esprit" on rue de Cléry. The château de Versailles displays a pair of bergère armchairs by him, remarkable for their bold design and the modernity of their carved decoration (ill. in P. Arizzoli-Clémentel, Le Mobilier de Versailles
, Dijon, 2002, II, pp. 230 -231).
Among the chairs that he stamped, let also take note of the flat back armchair from the former Aubert collection, then Hubert de Givenchy, as well as one from the former Maurice Segoura collection, which included solid tapered feet with stop-fluting, and also a distinctive pair of bergère armchairs from the Chancellerie d'Orléans which was acquired in 2011 by the Banque de France.
On a final note, the indented top rail on the backrest of our armchair, as well as the wide crook armrests ending with triglyph bases, are found on armchairs belonging to the same set stamped De Bauve, one sold in Paris, Libert & Castor auction, 28 June 2002, lot 197, and a pair also sold in Paris, Fraysse auction, 2 December 2009, lot 145.