Large document casket in Boulle marquetry
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Exquisite case or casket destined to contain important documents. Beautiful quality of marquetry with fine cutouts, intense red color and nicely chased gilt bronzes. Head of mercury at the lock. Women’s busts on scrolls at every corner. The bronzes are the exact same front and back, so the case was made to put in the middle of a table or stand. Very impressive piece. In the authentic condition.
Size: H 34 cm x W 66 cm x D 48 cm
French work of the 19th century.
Lit: André Charles Boulle (Paris, 1642-1732), master cabinetmaker in 1664, was also a founder, draughtsman, and sculptor. He was able to combine his various talents without having to comply with corporate regulations thanks to his title of “First Cabinet Maker to the King”. His workshops were in the Louvre.
Boulle” marquetry, the superimposition of tortoiseshell and brass decorations, was not invented by him, even if the term “Boulle marquetry” has since become a generic term. In fact, Dutch craftsmen had already been using this technique since the second quarter of the 17th century.
The very principle of this marquetry is the cutting with a saw of a plate of tortoiseshell and a plate of brass superimposed, the result being that one obtained two backgrounds and two decorations to be veneered which are defined as follows: in “first part” (tortoiseshell background with brass ornamentation) and in “counterpart” (brass background with tortoiseshell ornamentation), which made it possible to produce furniture in pairs.