Georges Jacob, maître in 1765
The Louis Seize 'Pompeian' or 'Etruscan' fashion for tablets and medallions is reflected in this chair's 'antique' design, with its pilaster-supported 'tablet' enriched with flowered ribbon guilloche and wreathed by a 'Venus' pearl string. Pearls and rose-flowered 'arabesques' of Roman foliage enrich the medallioned seat, while pearls and husks entwine the antique flutes of its quiver-tapered 'columnar' legs, which are voluted like Jove's thunderbolt. The back legs reflect the Pompeian scrolled fashion popularised in the 1770s at the French court by Richard Mique (d.1794) 'architect' to Marie Antoinette. The extreme elegance of these frames perfectly suited the silk vignettes executed in the 1770s to the designs of Jean-Demosthene Dugourc (d.1825), 'peintre en miniature' and author of a 'Receuil d'arabesques' 1782, who claimed to have initiated 'le style etrusque'. In 1780 he was appointed 'Dessinateur' to the Duc d'Orleans and four years later to Louis XVI's 'Garde-Meuble'. During this period he was based in the Magazin des Bronzes in the rue Meslay alongside Georges Jacob (d.1803). The work on these premises was supervised by the sculptor Jean Haure (d.1816), who was also appointed in 1784 to supervise court furniture executed for (see C. Baulez, 'De Dugourc a Pernon', Lyon, 1990).
In 1955 a chair of this set was lent by Mr. Christian Dior for exhibition at the Muee des Art Décoratifs (see Vaudoyer, 'Grands Ebenistes et Menuisiers Parisiens', Paris, 1956, pl.100.
The same ornament features on a 'fauteuil a la reine', formerly in the possession of Messrs Dalva Brothers, New York (advertised in Connoisseur, April, 1969).