A related cabinet attributed to Charles-Guillaume Diehl, probably the pair to the present lot, sold Christie's, London, 1 November 2001, lot 282 (£35,250). With its peculiar lion masks, spiky swags and stylised foliage, this cabinet features many of Diehl's preferred ornaments and designs, usually encompassing Etruscan, Egyptian, Gothic and Asian influences. Further links may be drawn between the present cabinet and Diehl's most famous pieces, such as the mounts present on the centre table exhibited at the Paris 1867 Exposition Unierselle or the large porcelain plaques which feature on a side cabinet made for the 1878 Paris Exposition. Another important feature to mention is the galvanoplastie technique used to create the mounts, a new process favoured and extensively used and developed by Diehl.
Born in Germany in 1811, Charles-Guillaume Diehl settled in Paris circa 1840. He first specialised in Boulle marquetry and small functional furniture. By 1878, he was known for his 'meubles néo-grecs très étudiés et très savants, participating in all the major expositions universelles where he was awarded numerous medals (1855, 1867, 1869 and 1873). Artists such as the marqueteur Varlot, the bronze designer Brandley or the sculptors Fremiet and Guillemin collaborated with Diehl to execute his most intricate pieces.