A French late 19th century ormolu mounted satiné kingwood and tulipwood bureau plat by Francois Linke, Paris
Lot 198
A French late 19th century ormolu mounted satiné kingwood and tulipwood bureau plat by Francois Linke, Paris, index number 972
Sold for £60,000 (US$ 99,712) inc. premium
Lot Details
A French late 19th century ormolu mounted satiné kingwood and tulipwood bureau plat
by Francois Linke, Paris, index number 972
the serpentine top inset with a brown leather gilt-tooled writing surface within a stepped surround, above three frieze drawers with foliate handles, the central drawer centred by a shell cartouche and flanked to each side by scrolling acanthus leaves, on cabriole legs, each headed by a female bust, two symbolising la coquetterie, the two others la modestie, issuing floral garlands and festoons, on foliate scrolling feet, 195cm wide, 99cm deep, 77.5cm high (76.5" wide, 38.5" deep, 30.5" high).

Footnotes

  • Linke workshop's cliché of the present bureau plat, bearing the index number 972, is illustrated in Christopher Payne, p.501.

    The corner mounts of this bureau plat are of the same model as thus of the commode coquille: Coquetterie et Modestie (index 559) presented at the 1900 Paris Great Exhibition. For the 1902 Salon, Francois Linke created a model of table en suite with the commode, using the same corner mounts figuring la Coquetterie and la Modestie (index 930 and 965), a version of this table was made for Devoto and another for the King of Egypt at Ras-al-Tin.

    As underlined by Christopher Payne, for the production of the commode coquille: Coquetterie et Modestie exhibited in 1900, Linke bought some of the models from Léon Messagé. The corner mounts figuring female busts emblematic of la Coquetterie and la Modestie are with no doubt his creations. This type of female figure which can be seen as a Rococo interpretation of the classical Espagnolette introduced by Charles Cressent in the 18th century, is characteristic of his design.

    The French sculptor Léon Messagé (1842-1901) collaborated with the most established cabinet makers of his time. He notably worked for Joseph Emmanuel Zwiener in the 1880s when he was celebrated for his ingenious designs before collaborating with Linke for the 1900 Paris great exhibition which was the success of his career.

    François Linke (1855-1946) was born in Bohemia, but moved to Paris where he established his business circa 1880 at 170, Rue du Faubourg Saint-Antoine, and after 1900 opened a showroom at 26, Place Vendôme. He made a great impact at the Paris 1900 Exposition Universelle at which he presented vigorous reinterpretations of the Rococo style for which he was aided by the sculptor Léon Messagé. Linke was awarded a Gold medal and his success acquired wealthy patrons from across the world. He was admired so much in France that he was awarded with the 'Croix de la Légion d'Honneur' in 1906.


    Literature:
    Christopher Payne, François Linke (1855-1946), The Belle Epoque of French Furniture, 2003.
    Camille Mestdagh, l'Ameublement d'art français (1850-1900), 2010.
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