The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
  • Chest-of-drawers
  • After André-Charles Boulle (1642 - 1732)
  • France
  • c. 1850
  • Oak, ebony, première-partie Boulle marquetry of brass, pewter and turtleshell, walnut, brass mounts, griotte marble, steel
  • Object size: 81.4 x 132.7 x 56.7 cm
  • F403
  • Great Gallery
Further Reading
  • This chest-of-drawers (commode) is one of a pair (with F404). They are made of oak with walnut drawers, and veneered with ebony and première-partie Boulle marquetry of brass, pewter and turtleshell. The tops are of red griotte marble.
    These commodes are accomplished French copies from the mid-nineteenth century of a model of chest-of-drawers that may be attrubuted to André-Charles Boulle (1642-1732).
    A red chalk drawing in the Hermitage, showing part of a chest-of-drawers ending in a hexagonal column, was exhibited at Frankfurt in 2009 in 'André-Charles Boulle. Un nouveau style pour l'Europe' (cat. no. 61). The drawing, which envisaged more complex mounts than on these Wallace Collection commmodes, and a plinth below the ends, was once in the collection of Alfred Beurdeley (1847-1919), who noted in his manuscript inventory, ‘Le meuble se trouve exécuté avec quelques modifications chez sir Richard Wallace.’ [This piece is found with several modifications in Sir Richard Wallace's collection]. This suggests a possible connection between these commodes and the Beurdeley workshop, possibly in the time of Louis-Auguste-Alfred Beurdeley (1808-82).
    There is also a pair of similar commodes, but considered to be early 18th-century, in the Philadelphia Museum of Art.