Pair of Pedestals

Object Details


Pair of Pedestals


Attributed to André-Charles Boulle (French, 1642 - 1732, master before 1666)




about 1700


Fir, oak and walnut veneered with ebony, dyed fruit wood (probably pear) brass and tortoise shell; gilt bronze mounts

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These two octagonal pedestals have cupboard doors that open on one side to reveal hollow interiors. They were designed to display sculptures; from an auction catalogue of 1788, scholars know they have supported the same bronze figure groups that they support today. They would have stood in a formal reception room or salon.

André-Charles Boulle, the man who perfected the distinctive technique of marquetry in tortoiseshell and brass, probably produced these elaborate stands. Boulle work was made of thin sheets of tortoiseshell and brass glued together and then cut into elaborate patterns. Areas of the stands not decorated with this marquetry were then veneered in ebony, while elaborate gilt bronze added to the lavish effect.

Related Works

"Acquisitions/1988." The J. Paul Getty Museum Journal 17 (1989), pp. 140-41, no. 68.

Bremer-David, Charissa et al. Decorative Arts: An Illustrated Summary Catalogue of the Collections of the J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1993), p. 73, no. 107.

Wilson, Gillian, and Catherine Hess. Summary Catalogue of European Decorative Arts in the J. Paul Getty Museum (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2001), pp. 55-56, no. 106.

Wilson, Gillian, et al. French Furniture and Gilt Bronzes: Baroque and Régence, Catalogue of the J. Paul Getty Museum Collection (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2008) pp. 226-35, no. 22.

Droth, Martina, and Penelope Curtis, eds. Taking Shape: Finding Sculpture in the Decorative Arts, exh. cat. (Leeds, Henry Moore Foundation; Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2009), pp. 26-34, no. 3, pp. 13, 14, p. 169.