June 14, the SVV Art Valorem, assisted by experts of the cabinet Authenticite, sold an important display cabinet executed by Lexcellent circa 1900 for the record price of 38,000 Euros.
Lot 345 the auction catalogue described our piece of furniture as a "vitrine montée" in mahogany, mahogany veneer and with inlays of wood.
Prior to progress further into the catalogue entry it seems essential to define the piece of furniture which derived from the cabinet. The upper part of the cabinet opens by one or more doors holding on a stand. This type of furniture that appears in the second half of the nineteenth century is rarely found.
Our display cabinet opened by three glass panels doors, three drawers at the bottom and rests on a base opening in the belt by three drawers.
It should be emphasized the harmony of the front of our furniture which is punctuated by fluted columns. At the top it has an arched cornice and each column is surmounted by a foliated pinnacle.
Now lets have a look to the beautiful pedestal supporting our display cabinet. Matching the shape of a console, it is supported on eight fluted , tapered legs joined by a particularly elaborate stretcher which can be related to creation of two great cabinetmakers of the end of the Louis XVI period, , Adam Weisweiler Ferdinand Schwerdfeger . It seems that it has inspired the architecture and design of our furniture that can be compared to the “serre bijoux” executed for Queen Marie Antoinette at Versailles either in the arrangement of the base or in the form of curved belt in the middle.
The ormolu bronzes are especially important on our display cabinet and give it its splendor. On the top part it is composed mainly of moldings, it is quite different in the lower part where the belt is decorated with a frieze of rich foliated scrolls adorned in the center of a radiant mask of Apollo encountered in another great cabinetmaker of the late eighteenth century, Martin Carlin. The stretcher itself has at its center a large rosette. We must emphasize the quality of the chasing as often on bronzes executed in the late nineteenth century.
Let us now turn to the author of this sumptuous piece of furniture. It bears the mark on the back of Lexcellent / 12 rue Breguet / PARIS. Installed in 1868 rue Breguet, Guillaume Edmond E Lexcellent is a manufacturer and dealer of furniture, silver medalist at the 1889 World Fair, and gold in the 1900. He was strongly inspired of the works of the great cabinetmakers the Louis XVI period, especially Riesener Weisweiler as demonstrated here.
Specialists of the late nineteenth century furniture made no mistake, a bid deserve for this piece of furniture of highest quality both in design and in its execution and particularly sumptuous. It was certainly the object of a specific command when it is created.
In the same sale also highlight the 6,000 Euros for another display cabinet circa 1900 attributed to Linke.
A full result on this auction will be published soon.
Cédric Henon, fine art specialist