The J. Paul Getty Museum

Secrétaire

Object Details

Title:

Secrétaire

Artist/Maker:

Jacques Dubois (French, 1694 - 1763, master 1742)

Culture:

French

Place:

Paris, France (Place Created)

Date:

about 1755

Medium:

White oak and sycamore maple veneered with panels of red Chinese lacquer on Japanese arborvitae and painted with European lacquer; interior drawers of sycamore maple and Japanese arborvitae; gilt-bronze mounts; brass and iron hardware and locks; brèche d'Alep top; replacement silk velvet and trim

Object Number:

65.DA.3

Dimensions:

102.8 × 114.3 × 38.4 cm (40 1/2 × 45 × 15 1/8 in.)

Credit Line:

Gift of J. Paul Getty

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Object Description

The fall front on the upper section of this secrétaire lowers on hinges to reveal a central open pigeon hole flanked by drawers, with a large open compartment above. The interior behind the large double doors below is divided in half by a shelf with the lower half further divided into two by a vertical partition.

The front and sides of the secrétaire are each veneered with a single panel of red Asian lacquer, the panel on the front having been cut into three pieces to form the fall front and the doors. The remaining exterior surfaces and the entire interior are decorated with red European lacquer.

Traditionally Parisian secretaries produced during the 1700s are of greater height than width, but this piece is an exception. It was evidently custom made to fit the large panel of Asian lacquer forming the front. This panel shows Europeans – depicted wearing distinctive jackets, breeches, and hats – hunting deer in front of a large building with Asian architectural features. The figures are probably meant to represent members of the Dutch East India Company, the primary European merchants operating in eastern Asia during the 1600s, and the panel may have been made especially for export to Europe.

Provenance
Provenance
- 1951

Rosenberg & Stiebel, Inc. (New York, New York), sold to J. Paul Getty, 1951.

1951 - 1965

J. Paul Getty, American, 1892 - 1976, donated to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1965.

Exhibitions
Exhibitions
Imagining the Orient (October 5, 2004 to April 3, 2005)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), October 5, 2004 to April 3, 2005
Bibliography
Bibliography

Valentiner, William R., and Paul Wescher. The J. Paul Getty Museum Guidebook (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1954), p. 14, no. 27.

Wescher, Paul. "French Furniture of the Eighteenth Century in the J. Paul Getty Museum." The Art Quarterly 18, no. 2 (Summer 1955), pp. 118, 122, 130, fig. 15.

Valentiner, William R., and Paul Wescher. The J. Paul Getty Museum Guidebook. 2nd ed. (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1956), p. 29, no. 27.

Getty, J. Paul. Chefs-d'oeuvre de la collection J. Paul Getty (Monaco: Jaspard, Polus & Cie, 1963), pp. 120-21, ill.

Jones, Anne Marian. A Handbook of the Decorative Arts in the J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1965), p. 24, no. D-59.

Getty, J. Paul. The Joys of Collecting (New York: Hawthorn Books, Inc., 1965), pp. 150-51, ill.

Frel, Jiri, Burton B. Fredericksen, and Gillian Wilson. The J. Paul Getty Museum Guidebook. 3rd ed. (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1975), pp. 72, 74.

Frel, Jiri, Burton Fredericksen, and Gillian Wilson. The J. Paul Getty Museum Guidebook. Rev. ed. (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1976), pp. 76, 78.

Wilson, Gillian. Decorative Arts in the J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1977), p. 57, no. 75.

Fredericksen, Burton B., Jiří Frel, and Gillian Wilson. Guidebook: The J. Paul Getty Museum. 4th ed. Sandra Morgan, ed. (Malibu: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1978), pp. 101, 103, 123.

Fredericksen, Burton B., Jiří Frel, and Gillian Wilson. The J. Paul Getty Museum Guidebook. 5th ed. (Malibu: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1980), pp. 92, 95.

Kjellberg, Pierre. Le Mobilier français du XVIIIe siècle: Dictionnaire des ébénistes et des menuisiers (Paris: Éditions de l'Amateur, 1989), p. 273.

Boiron, Stéphane. "Jacques Dubois, maître du style Louis XV." L'Estampille/L'Objet d'Art 237 (June 1990), p. 55, ill.

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. 37, no. 43.

Wolvesperges, Thibaut. Le Meuble français en laque au XVIIIe siècle (Paris and Brussels: Les Éditions de l’Amateur and Éditions Racine, 2000), pp. 42, 45, fig. 28.

Wilson, Gillian, and Catherine Hess. Summary Catalogue of European Decorative Arts in the J. Paul Getty Museum (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2001), p. 25, no. 43.

Harwood, Buie, Bridget May, and Curt Sherman. Architecture and Interior Design through the 18th Century: An Integrated History (Upper Saddle River: Prentice Hall, 2002), p. 401, fig. 23-32.

Schilling, Michael et al. "Chinese lacquer: Much more than Chinese lacquer." Supplement, Studies in Conservation 59, no. S1 (2014), p. S131.

Wilson, Gillian, and Arlen Heginbotham. French Rococo Ébénisterie in the J. Paul Getty Museum (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2021), introduction, no. 13, ill., entry by Gillian Wilson; under nos. 6, 11, 12.

Chasen, Jessica, Arlen Heginbotham, and Michael Schilling. "Analysis of East Asian and European Lacquer Surfaces on Rococo Furniture." In French Rococo Ébénisterie in the J. Paul Getty Museum, Wilson, Gillian, and Arlen Heginbotham (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2021), no. 13.

Education Resources
Education Resources

Education Resource

Subjects

Grades

Format

Asian Influences Curriculum