Nicholas Heurtaut, maître in 1755.
With their distinctive tall scrolling backs, these elegant chairs are rare examples of Hertaut's oeuvre of the 1760's. The design of the backs demonstrates a distinctive Turkish influence, which was particularly fashionable from the Louis XV period. In the 1780's the Comte d'Artois redecorated and refurnished his appartments in Versailles and installed a cabinet turc. An identical chair is illustrated in B. Pallot The Art of the Chair in 18th Century France, Paris, 1987, p. 252, and a pair of identical chairs but without painted decoration sold from the collection of Dr. Anton C.R. Dreesman, Christie's London, 10 April 2002.
Nicolas Heurtaut was elected maître-menuisier on 22 August 1753, but had already been appointed sculpteur en bois in 1742. Initially Heurtaut worked as an ornamental sculptor, and embellished chairs executed by other makers such as Claude Sené and the Tilliard brothers. After obtaining his maîtrise in 1753, he continued to carve his own chairs, a practice rarely approved by the guild (B. Pallot, ibid, p. 234-235 and 240.