Writing Table (bureau plat)

Object Details


Writing Table (bureau plat)


By Martin Carlin (French, born Germany, about 1730 - 1785, master 1766)
At least seven plaques gilded by Jean-Baptiste-Emmanuel Vandé (French, 1716 - 1779)
Sèvres Manufactory (French, 1756 - present)




Paris France Sèvres France (Place created)


about 1778


Oak veneered with tulipwood and set with 14 soft-paste porcelain plaques with bleu céleste ground color, polychrome enamel decoration, gilding; set with gilt bronze mounts, modern leather top


77.5 × 131.1 × 61.9 cm (30 1/2 × 51 5/8 × 24 3/8 in.)

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The marchand-mercier Dominique Daguerre purchased the porcelain plaques that decorate the sides of this table from the Sèvres Porcelain Manufactory specifically to be mounted on furniture. Once ordered from Sèvres, the porcelain plaques, including the unusually-shaped ones at either end of the table, would have been given by the dealer to the ébéniste Martin Carlin with orders to mount them onto a newly designed piece.

This table was among the pieces of furniture that Daguerre sold in May 1782 to Grand Duchess Maria Feodorovna and Grand Duke Paul Petrovich of Russia, who later became the Czar and Czarina. They made an unofficial trip through Europe traveling as the comte and comtesse du Nord. The Duchess installed the table in her bedroom at the Palace of Pavlosk, near Saint Petersburg.


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Duveen and Co. A Catalogue of Works of Art in the Collection of Anna Thomson Dodge: Paintings, Tapestries, Furniture, and objets d'art. 2 vols. (Detroit: n.p., 1939), vol. 1, introduction pp. xv-xvi and non-paginated entry, ill.

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