The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
  • Writing-table
  • Attributed to Jean-Pierre Latz (1691 - 1754)
  • France
  • c. 1744
  • Oak, kingwood, tulipwood, gilt-bronze, pinewood and leather
  • Object size: 85 x 184 x 88.5 cm
  • Stamp: 'PARKES PATENT LONDON (with a crown)
  • F112
  • Great Gallery
Further Reading
  • Writing tables like this were originally developed by André-Charles Boulle but, as this example shows, their popularity continued well into the eighteenth century and generations of cabinet-makers continued to produce them, adapting the outline and decoration to suit the fashion of the day. Here Latz has introduced serpentine ends and flowing, organic gilt bronze mounts to update the 'look' and appeal to the contemporary rococo style in which he excelled.
    The desk is attributed to Latz on the basis of similarities to other pieces of furniture by him, especially a writing table on the art market in 1990 with the same model of corner mounts, that was signed and dated by Latz in 1754.
    The leather on the top has been replaced.
    Latz was born in Cologne but, like many successful German cabinet-makers in the 18th century, he moved to Paris where he established a successful furniture workshop. Most of his clientele appear to have been foreign aristocrats and royalty, especially German. The largest collections of his furniture are to be found in Berlin and Dresden.