An important 1867 Great Exhibition Louis XVI style  lacquer and ormolu-mounted satinwood, amaranth and parquetry  meuble à hauteur d'appui by Louis Auguste Alfred Beurdeley, Paris
Lot 308
An important 1867 Great Exhibition Louis XVI style lacquer and ormolu-mounted satinwood, amaranth and parquetry meuble à hauteur d'appui by Louis Auguste Alfred Beurdeley, Paris
Sold for AU$ 192,000 (US$ 179,288) inc. premium
Lot Details
An important 1867 Great Exhibition Louis XVI style lacquer and ormolu-mounted satinwood, amaranth and parquetry meuble à hauteur d'appui
by Louis Auguste Alfred Beurdeley, Paris
the shaped green marble top with multi-layered edge above a central frieze drawer with lacquer panel to the middle above a pair of cupboard doors with raised Japan lacquer panels on an aventurine background flanked by a pair of inlaid twisted columns and a pair of ogee shaped parquetry cupboard doors with further columns to the out side, raised on short feet with acanthus leaf mounts, decorated overall with cast gilt bronze mounts and various fruitwood inlays, stamped 'A BEURDELEY, A PARIS', twice on the top and once on the back, 151cm wide, 49.5cm deep, 100cm high (59" wide, 19" deep, 39" high).


  • This meuble à hauteur d'appui was especially made for the 1867 Great Exhibition in Paris, featuring in the Beurdeley album from the Exhibition, as illustrated in Camille Mestdagh, L'ameublement d'art français (1850-1900), p.143.

    Beurdeley won the Gold Medal at the 1867 Exhibition. At the time of this major event, Louis Auguste Alfred was still running the workshop he created and this piece is a very good example of his work. It can be considered as an innovative piece because of its very unusual serpentine shape and it presents some characteristic gilt bronze mounts, notably the beaded friezes framing the lacquer panels and the sunflower heads enhancing the trellis marquetery to the curved side panels.

    The present cabinet is mentioned in the report written by the Craftmen Delegation at the Exhibition, described as a meuble à hauteur d'appui in the Louis XVI style and decorated with aventurine and lacquer panels identified as "Chinese" by the author.
    Most of the reporters at the Exhibition, such as Philippe Burty, were impressed by the extreme quality of the Beurdeley ormolu mounts, being compared to thus of "Gouthières", mentioning the attention to details in the chasing and impressive quality of the Mercury gilding.

    In 1867 Beurdeley also exhibited a Louis XVI style lacquer and mother of pearl ormolu mounted table and a very large Bibliothèque decorated with pietre dure, amongst other pieces and a variety of gilt bronzes and hard stone objects.

    Louis Auguste Alfred Beurdeley (1808-1883).
    The Beurdeley family is one of the most important dynasties of furniture makers of the 19th century. The founder of the dynasty, Jean Beurdeley (1772-1853), began his career in Paris in 1804. There he started a small company and steadily built his excellent reputation. Established by 1804 at 355 rue Saint-Honoré until 1818, and 364 rue Saint-Honoré from 1820 to 1839, he moved then to the famous "Pavillon de Hanovre" situated on the corner of rue Louis-le-Grand and Boulevard des Italiens, having already met substantial success at that time. His son, Louis Auguste Alfred Beurdeley (1808-1883), was to become a well respected, famous craftsman for furniture and works of the latter half of the 19th century. He took over his father's business, where he was creating furniture mainly inspired by Louis XVI period. Under the Second Empire he became one of the main suppliers for the Garde Meuble Impérial. He created furniture for the wedding of Napoléon III and Empress Eugénie and was a purveyor to many European royal families. He also participated in the Universal Exhibitions in Paris in 1855 and 1867 where he received many medals for the high quality and originality of his work.
    Alfred-Emmanuel-Louis Beurdeley (1847-1919), started working with his father and eventually succeeded him in 1875 and went on with the same style until the end of the company in 1895. He kept the shop at the "Pavillon de Hanovre" and also had workshops at 20 and 24, rue Dautancourt. He achieved great success like his father. He took part in the 1878 and 1889 Great Exhibitions in Paris were he was awarded the gold medal. He also became Chevalier de la Légion d'Honneur after his participation in the 1883 Amsterdam International Exhibition, France's highest official mark of recognition.
    Beurdeley closed his shop and workshop in 1895 and the stock was sold at auctions. In the short span of 20 years, Beurdeley made an indelible mark on the history of 19th-century French furnishings, for his creations remain among the finest of the period.


    Denise Ledoux-Lebard, Le Mobilier-Francais du XIX Siecle, pp.75-82
    Camille Mestdagh, L'ameublement d'art français (1850-1900), Les editions de l'amateur, Paris, 2010.

Saleroom notices

  • Please note the cupboard door panels are Vernis Martin and not Aventurine as described in the online catalogue.
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  1. James Hendy
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