Object Description

A Louis XV Style Gilt-Bronze Mounted Desk Chair, The Bronze Mounts by Maison Mottheau Et Fils.

French, Circa 1880.

Stamped to the reverse of the mounts ‘EM’.

This fine desk chair is mounted with finely cast gilt-bronze figural mounts depicting centurions.

Object History

The bronzier Maison Mottheau & Fils is perhaps best known for their ‘torchère lumineuse’ exhibited at the 1900 Paris Exposition Universelle; an ambitious and monumental tour de force executed in gilt-bronze and onyx from a design by Eugène-Frédéric Piat.

Specialising primarily in lighting fixtures, the firm took full advantage of the advent of electricity, incorporating it with their decorative designs, combining function with elaborate decoration.

Commenting on the introduction of electricity, the Art Journal wrote of Mottheau’s display at the Paris 1900 Exposition Universelle:

The French Section shows many examples of fine work applied under the new conditions, but we doubt if a more complete success is to be recorded to the credit of any exhibitor than can be conceded to Messieurs Mottheau et fils.

Object Literature

The Art Journal. The Paris Exhibition 1900 – An Illustrated Record of its Art, Architecture and Industrie, (London), 1900; pp. 86-7.

Meyer, Jonathan. Great Exhibitions – London, New York, Paris, Philadelphia, 1851-1900, Antique Collectors’ Club, (Woodbridge, UK), 2006; pps. 290, 318 pl. J72.

Object Classification

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