Work Table thumbnail 1
Work Table thumbnail 2
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Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Furniture, Room 135, The Dr Susan Weber Gallery

Work Table

1776 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

The V&A has two versions of this delicate work table. The other (Museum number 1058-1882) has a slightly more elaborate porcelain plaque, painted with a central basket of flowers. Both were purchased in the nineteenth century by the London collector John Jones, who bequeathed them to the Museum as part of his large collection of French decorative arts. From the 1760s onwards, the French cabinet-maker Martin Carlin, whose stamp appears on this piece, made a speciality of producing small-scale luxury furniture set with painted porcelain plaques. A hundred years later, such pieces were keenly sought by collectors, and John Jones followed the fashion in buying several small pieces set with porcelain or Japanese lacquer.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Veneered with tulipwood, purplewood, holly and stained wood on carcase of oak; set with porcelain plaque and gilt-brass mounts; velvet and watered silk drawer lining, edged with braid; gilt brass mounts, castors of lignum vitae
Brief Description
Work table (Table à ouvrage), French, 1776, veneered in tulipwood and set with porcelain and gilt bronze mounts; with the stamp of Martin Carlin. Possibly commissioned by Simon-Philippe Poirier and Dominique Daguerre.
Physical Description
A double-tiered circular work table, raised on a tripod support, the top tier set with a Sèvres porcelain plaque decorated with sprigs of flowers, the lower tier set with marquetry of scrolls. The table is veneered with tulipwood and other woods on a carcase of oak, the drawers lined with velvet and watered silk and edged with braid; drawer fittings of gilt-bronze and castors of lignum vitae.
Dimensions
  • Porcelain plaque diameter: 37.7cm
  • Porcelain plaque thickness: 1.2cm
  • Height: 76cm
  • Diameter: 67.2cm
Style
Marks and Inscriptions
  • 'M.CARLIN JME' (Stamped on the underside of the top tier. Mark of the cabinet-maker Martin Carlin, with the initials of the juré des menuisiers-ébénistes)
  • Crossed L's enclosing the letter B, in manganese purple (Painted on the back of the plaque. The crossed L's were the mark of the Sèvres factory, the letter B was the mark of the painter and gilder, probably that of Jean-Pierre Boulanger, active 1754-85)
Credit line
Bequeathed by John Jones
Object history
In the collection of John Jones before 1882.



Carlin also produced versions of this stand with simple shelves and no fittings for needlework. Examples were sold at Christie's, London 29 June 172, lot 76 (from the Hillingdon Collection) and at Christie's, London, 3 July 1986, lot 102.
Subject depicted
Summary
The V&A has two versions of this delicate work table. The other (Museum number 1058-1882) has a slightly more elaborate porcelain plaque, painted with a central basket of flowers. Both were purchased in the nineteenth century by the London collector John Jones, who bequeathed them to the Museum as part of his large collection of French decorative arts. From the 1760s onwards, the French cabinet-maker Martin Carlin, whose stamp appears on this piece, made a speciality of producing small-scale luxury furniture set with painted porcelain plaques. A hundred years later, such pieces were keenly sought by collectors, and John Jones followed the fashion in buying several small pieces set with porcelain or Japanese lacquer.
Collection
Accession Number
1067-1882

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record createdJune 29, 2005
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