CHARLES DE PAUW
This armoire formed part of the fabled collection of Charles de Pauw, which included furniture by André-Charles Boulle, Etienne Levasseur and Adam Weisweiler as well as the pair of Louis XIV giltwood fauteuils from the collection of Maurice de Talleyrand-Perigord, duc de Talleyrand, which was subsequently sold at Christie's, London, 14 December 2000, lot 315 (£542,750).
Designed in the Louis XIV 'antique' manner developed by André-Charles Boulle and Jean Bérain, this armoire is stylistically close to the oeuvre of the ébéniste Nicolas Sageot, discussed by P. Grand in 'Le Mobilier Boulle et les ateliers de l'époque', L'Estampille L'Objet d'Art, February 1993, pp. 48 - 70.
Grand identifies three developmental stages in Sageot's armoires. The first displays the arched cornice and a dense Bérainesque marquetry incorporating red tortoiseshell covering much of the surfaces. The second ads the formal pilasters to each side of the doors and moves away from the figurative marquetry to replace them with arabesques. The third changes the arched cornice to an ogival shape. This armoire falls into the first group with its arched pediment and red tortoiseshell marquetry.
NICOLAS SAGEOT (1666 - 1731)
First recorded in Paris in 1698, Sageot achieved his maîtrise in 1706 and was based in the faubourg Saint-Antoine. He evidently rapidly expanded his business, as by 1711 he had 12,000 livres, almost all in stock-in-trade. The extensive nature of his business is revealed by the sale in 1720 to Léonard Prieur 'Marchand Mercier Grossier Joaillier Priviligié suivant la Cour' of 16,000 livres of furniture, consisting of a wide range of armoires, bureaux and commodes and amongst which were several 'armoires à dôme' in brass-inlaid tortoiseshell, valued between 400 and 1000 livres.