Style Napoleon III / Ref.03141
Charles-Guillaume Diehl, sewing table with turtles and grasshoppers
Width: 18'' ⅛ 46cm
Height: 30'' ¾ 78cm
Depth: 18'' ⅛ 46cm
After 1878. Paris.
Legs in checker tree wood, marquetry of various woods (amaranth, birch, Ceylon ebony, maple, holly and stained holly), shined and painted bronze, fabric and padding, mirror.
Three supple checker tree legs rise from a triangular wood base adorned with floral marquetry. They cross and curve elegantly up to a particularly graceful multi-foil sewing box in precious wood. The decorative elements are dragonflies and butterflies, foliage and flowers, in the wood but also and most surprisingly as painted bronze very naturalistic elements, of Japanese inspiration. The top of the box displays a single large marquetry branch of flowers.
The latch is hidden, in a typical fashion according to Jules Mesnard; “Another specific merit of Mr Diehl is his latches: his boxes and furniture do not close with keys for a key can break the lines of a design. Mr Diehl opens and closes his boxes by pushing an ornament that just seems in its place. Such a closing device offers secrecy and challenges thieves and inquisitors.'
There are several versions of this table, one in the Ecole de Nancy museum and the other in the Musée d’Orsay.
Charles-Guillaume Diehl was born in Steinbach in Germany in 1811 and established himself in 1840 in Paris - by 1870 he employed 600 people in his workshops rue Saint-Sébastien. He was very popular attracting many to his World’s Fair exhibits, combining his talent of cabinet maker and marquetry artist. He became naturalised French in 1872.
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