Rare Louis XV/Louis XVI Marriage Armoire, Original Painted Panels, France circa 1780
A rare Louis XV/Louis XVI transitional period oak marriage armoire having elaborate carved detail with parcel gilt detailing from Normandy, France c. 1780 with the original painted panels depicting scenes of love in the style of Francois Boucher and Honore Fragonard. The combination of the painted finish along with the gold highlighting against the luster of the polished oak gives this antique French armoire its unique appeal. At the top of the cabinet doors is a beautifully carved section featuring a wicker basket overflowing with various flowers, a motif used in Normandy to refer to the bounty of nature especially when combined with marital harmony. In fact the theme of flowers is seen in both the painted and carved sections of this antique armoire and used in a complementary manner to enhance the overall effect. Do look at the middle section of each cabinet door where there is an oval medallion containing a collection of musical instruments including wind, reed and brass examples. These medallions are surrounded by flowers as well carved deeply into the oak timber for maximum sculptural effect. The oak armoire stands upon fully carved feet in the famous cabriole or coquille shape known for its resemblance to the curve of a nautilus shell. The elegant curved profile to the apron that connects the front legs also adds beauty and repeats the flow of the carved feet that are carved from a single vertical piece of oak that extends the full length of the armoire at each of the four corners. It is important to remember that during this period of the eighteenth century the only natural light available was that of fire. Burning candles and a roaring blaze in the hearth was the only illumination available during the long dark and cold months of winter. The solution was to create pieces of furniture that were functional but also wonderfully decorated to take advantage of the available light. In this antique armoire the carving has been enhanced by the use of gilt detailing to add sparkle and depth. Imagine how magical this cabinet looked from all directions when firelight danced across its surface! The elegant painted doors, the skilful carving and the gilding all indicate this was an important piece when it was first created and it remains as desirable today as it was over two hundred years ago.
WIDTH: 59 in | HEIGHT: 93 in | DEPTH: 22 in
Shipping Estimate: $450 | White glove
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