Saturday, 22 November 2014

18ème, aux sources du design

Versailles 18è aux sources du design
On 10 November, VDP went to the sumptuous '18th century, Birth of Design, Furniture Masterpieces from 1650 to 1790' exhibition at the palace. As usual, photographs weren't allowed and VDP hopes you will forgive the more than mediocre quality of the pics below as they are merely photos of the above booklet, just to give you an idea. The around 100 furniture pieces exhibited, cabinets, desks, writing tables, commodes, consoles, a medal cabinet, sofas, folding chairs, armchairs etc were simply amazing as was the evolution in taste and craftsmanship, most notably that of André-Charles Boulle and Jean-Henri Riesener. Like them or not, you can't but admire the craftsmanship!

Le 10 novembre, VDP s'est rendue en nocturne abonnés à la somptueuse exposition "18è, aux sources du design, chefs-d’œuvre du mobilier de 1650 à 1790" au château. Bien évidemment, les photos n'y étaient pas autorisées et vous pardonnerez donc la qualité plus que médiocre des photos ci-desssous. En effet, ce sont des pages de l'album de l'exposition ci-dessus, que VDP a acquis à cette occasion. La centaine de meubles exposés, cabinets, bureaux, tables à écrire, commodes, guéridons, bonheurs du jour, une armoire à médailles, canapés, pliants, fauteuils etc sont éblouissants et l'évolution des goûts fascinante. Parmi les ébénistes, citons surtout André-Charles Boulle et Jean-Henri Riesener.
Commode de Madame de Mailly
18th Century, Birth of Design, Furniture Masterpieces from 1650 to 1790 - See more at: http://en.chateauversailles.fr/news-/events/expositions/18e-aux-sources-du-design-en#sthash.2SZRLVyS.dpuf
Mathieu Criard, Paris 1742 : Commode de Madame de Mailly, marqueterie.

Cabinet des Gobelins
Cabinet des Gobelins (Florence 1664-1672 et Paris 1675).

Commode en porcelaine de Sèvres Vanrisamburgh
Bernard II van Risamburgh : commode en porcelaine de Sèvres, Paris ca. 1760.

 Oeben et Riesener, bureau du roi Versailles
Jean-François Oeben et Jean-Henri Riesener, bureau du roi / the king's desk, Paris 1760-1769.

It took nine years to make this desk and the marquetry is gobsmacking. There are countless little drawers, (some secret) hidden inside. The king could unlock the desk and all the drawers with a single key and there is one double sided clock. It faces both the writing side and the other side, so that whomever was conferring with Louis XV would not see what the king was writing or filing but still see the time. On the sides are writing cases where ink could be filled without opening the desk. VDP couldn't help wondering what it would feel like to gently place her laptop on the open desk and then preferred to imagine she was holding a quill pen...

Il a fallu neuf ans pour terminer ce meuble, doté d'un mécanisme complexe permettant à Louis XV, avec une seule clef, d'ouvrir le cylindre et tous les tiroirs ainsi que les casiers secrets. Sur les côtés se trouvent des écritoires qui pouvaient être chargés en encre sans ouvrir le meuble. Une pendule à double cadran permettait au roi d'écrire ou ranger en toute discrétion tandis que son visiteur voyait également l'heure tout en admirant la marqueterie de toute beauté. VDP n'a pas pu s'empêcher de s'imaginer poser doucement son portable sur ce bureau puis a préféré imaginer tenir une plume...

17 comments:

Revrunner said...

I like that blue piece. The rest look a little garish to me. ;-)

RedPat said...

The artistry and craftsmanship in these pieces is fabulous, Ciel! Even if they aren't to one's taste they have to be admired!

William Kendall said...

I would love to have that desk!

Bob Crowe said...

With so much distraction in the 21st Century, I can't possibly absorb all the detail in these designs.

Randy said...

A little too fancy for me but that would have been a great exhibit to see.

Dina said...

C'est vrai, a super sophisticated desk fit for a king. Secret drawers, double sided clock ...

llandudnopictures said...

Exquisite, and congratulations on overcoming the 'no photographs' nonsense!

Tahiti Daily Photo said...

Que le style était chargé !

VP said...

Wonderful pieces from another era!

Birdman said...

Stunning designs!
Now the commodes?

Lowell said...

I would have enjoyed this. I remember the magnificent furniture in the castle and it would be fun to get a closer look! Your photos came out just fine!

Sharon Anck said...

All I can say is WOW! Such gorgeous pieces of hand crafted furniture. I would have loved this exhibit.

Stuart said...

It's good to be the king. Whatever you want, no matter the price. However, I have to say I'm glad the furniture outlived the royalty.

Wayne (Woody), whatever said...

I can see not wanting flash photography, but not allowing any is a major bummer. You've come up with a creative work-around, bravo! It is a bit ornate, but I do appreciate the craftsmanship.

Jack said...

Those pieces of furniture are simply amazing, aren't they? I would not have either the skill or patience to work on one of them, no matter how long I practiced.

EG CameraGirl said...

Too ornate for my taste but I would indeed enjoy seeing them in person.

PerthDailyPhoto said...

I love them Ciel and can so appreciate the skill and patience it must have taken to create them..It's a little bit of a drag when you aren't allowed to take photos when there is so much TO take photos of :)