French Antique Transformation Furniture: Chest of Drawers, Transition style around 1800.
The French antique transformation furniture piece, a chest of drawers, originates from Paris and dates back to 1800. The special feature of this unique and extraordinary piece is hidden underneath its top. The top can be lifted up and reveals the top of a secretaire. The secretaire compartment lifts up and reveals six small drawers. The writing surface folds out and is covered with red leather.
Furthermore, this intriguing piece stands out with its exquisite rosewood, satinwood and king wood flower marquetry on front, sides and top. There is one drawer in the front and two additional drawers on each side of the chest. Original bronze fittings embellish the commode. On the back is an unreadable manufacturer stamp.
Louis XV style is generally composed of two parts: The Rocaille or Rococo period (1720-1755) and Louis XV proper (1750-1774). Both forms share many similarities, motifs, and inspiration. But while Baroque furniture caters to robust design and balance, the ornate details of Rococo were purposefully feminine and romantic. They are more graceful and place less of an emphasis on symmetry.
Between 1755 and 1760, the forms of furniture and interior decoration began to change into what became known as the Second Style Louis XV, or the Style Transition. The rocaille decoration remained, but became more discreet and restrained. Secondly, the new wave of enthusiasm for ancient Greece and Rome brought a series of new decorative themes, though the lines of the furniture were not much changed. This marked the beginning of what became French neoclassicism or Style Louis XVI.
The popularity of transformation pieces spread in the 18th century, and more artisans attempted to modify existing pieces to create attractive new designs.
Transformation commodes, the Secretaire a la Bourgogne or the table a la Bourgogne were for example very popular. Compare a beautiful eaxample at the Metropolitan Museum in New York.
Details of this piece
The transformation commode is in very good, refinished condition. It measures H 29.93 x W 28.35 x D 18.12 inches. (H 76 cm x W 72 cm x D 46 cm).
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