Nol Grard, active 1690-1736.
Grard, who was the half-brother of the bniste Jacques Dubois, married the widow of a menuisier en bne at the age of 25 in 1710. He was firstly a marchand-bniste, based in the rue Faubourg St. Antoine, but became a marchand-mercier in 1726. Established in the spectacular htel of the 17th century connoisseur Jabach, Grard's boutique became one of the most important in Paris.
This commode was certainly executed by an bniste working in Grard's atelier. It belongs to a distinctive group of commodes deux tiroirs of this model of circa 1720 of which five are known, four of which are in Boulle marquetry. These include the celebrated commode formerly in the Kotschoubey collection, in premire partie, sold Paris 23 March, 1982; a commode in premire partie with very similar apron and angle mounts, now in a private collection, sold Sotheby's Monaco, 23 June 1983, lot 133; another example in contrepartie now in the collection of the Marquess of Bath, Longleat, was sold through Christie's to the nation in 1996 under the acceptances in lieu procedure to remain in situ at Longleat. A further commode of this model but in palissander and stamped N.G., formerly in the collection of Mme. Camoin, sold Paris, 2 April 1987, lot 133. The stamp N.G. is now accepted as the mark of Nel Grard's workshop, and it is on this basis that the other commodes of this group are attributed to Grard. An extraordinarly richly-mounted brass-inlaid tortoiseshell and ebony commode also stamped N.G. from the Collection of the Late Joan Toor Cummings was sold Christie's New York, 21 May 1996, lot 238.