Jean Boucault, maître in 1728.
The distinctly curvaceous lines of these elegant fauteuils illustrate the characteristic fluidity of Boucault's work. Established on the rue de Cléry, Boucault worked in the Louis XV and transitional styles, and supplied numerous pieces to such notable patrons as Louise Elisabeth, duchess of Parma, and the duc de Choiseul, his most famous patron.
César Gabriel de Choiseul (1719-1785), Minister of state and cousin of Louis XV's Prime Minister, was created duke in 1766. Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs and later Ministre de la Marine, he owned the hôtel de Belle-Isle in Paris and the château of Vaux-le-Vicomte. In 1763 for La Chambre du Lit of the duc's Parisian hôtel in the rue de Richelieu, he supplied the bed, the fauteuils and ottomane which were gilded by Louis Aubry (maître in 1774). This seat furniture, which was covered in summer with a basin brodé and in winter with gilt and blue damask, has a similar silhouette to the offered chairs and can be seen on the celebrated boîte de Choiseul painted by Louis Nicolas van Blarenberghe circa 1770-1 (illustrated in A. Kenneth Snowman, Eighteenth Century Gold Boxes of Europe, London, 1990, p. 216-217, plates 437-442) while for the Grand Salon de Compagnie, the menuisier supplied the sieges meublants à chassis and fauteuils en cabriolet for 2500 Livres. Six fauteuils, stamped by Boucault, which were also supplied to the duc de Choiseul for the château de Chanteloup, are now in the Musée de Tours.