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    Sale 7466

    Le Goût Steinitz, III

    6 December 2007, London, King Street

  • Lot 374

    AN EMPIRE ORMOLU AND PATINATED BRONZE-MOUNTED MAHOGANY CONSOLE TABLE

    BY BERNARD MOLITOR, EARLY 19TH CENTURY

    Price Realised  

    AN EMPIRE ORMOLU AND PATINATED BRONZE-MOUNTED MAHOGANY CONSOLE TABLE
    BY BERNARD MOLITOR, EARLY 19TH CENTURY
    The rectangular fossiled black marble top above a moulded cornice and a frieze mounted with a stylised rosette flanked by scrolling foliage and confronting swans, the square-sectioned tapering herm supports headed by Egyptian female busts and terminating in paw-cast feet, on a rectangular plinth base, (lacking panel to back), stamped twice 'B. MOLITOR'
    36¼ in. (92 cm.) high; 39 in. (99 cm.) wide; 16½ in. (42 cm.) deep


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    Bernard Molitor, maître in 1787.

    With its architectural, elegant, yet simple lines, this console by Molitor is characteristic of the oeuvre of the ébéniste, and is closely-related to a console table by Molitor, illustrated in U. Leben, Molitor, Ébéniste from the Ancien Régime to the Bourbon Restoration, New York, 1992, p. 99, fig. 45, and another, ill. in Bernard Molitor 1755-1833, ex. Cat. Galerie d'art de la ville de Luxembourg- Villa Vauban, 1995, Luxembourg, p, 114 fig 42.
    Two virtually identical console tables were sold from the Hôtel Merode, at Millon & Associés, 20-22 September 2002, lot 312, and Kohn, Paris, 16-17 December 2002, lot 227, respectively.

    Active from the Ancien Régime until approximately 1818, Molitor produced neo-classical furniture adorned with classically-inspired motifs before gradually introducing ornaments and shapes of the then en vogue Empire style. Ulrich Leben's comprehensive research on Molitor demonstrates the diversity of the oeuvre of this talented ébéniste (U. Leben, op.cit., p. 32). A perfect illustration of such diversity is the pair of secrétaires à abattant, now in the Musée du Louvre, Paris (inv.OA5475-5476), which was commissioned by Marie-Antoinette but only delivered to the Garde-Meuble de la Couronne by the ébéniste during Louis XVIII's reign.

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