(b. 1728, Paris, d. 1799, Paris)


Pine, oak, tulipwood, gilt bronze, marble, 88 x 132 x 53 cm
Victoria and Albert Museum, London

This is a commode of breakfront form, on tall cabriole legs, veneered with floral and trellis marquetry, with gilt-bronze mounts and Spanish brocatelle marble top. It is veneered with tulipwood and parquetry of various woods. The mounts are gilt bronze.

This form of commode or chest of drawers, with a 'breakfront' or projection section in the middle, was particularly favoured by the Parisian cabinet-maker Roger Vandercruse, although his was not the only workshop to produce them. A number of commodes stamped on the carcase with his 'R V L C' mark are known, and some are known to have been made for members of the court. The combination of trellis marquetry and marquetry of flowers was another feature of Vandercruse's work.

The design of the lower part of the central panel was copied from a series of engravings of baskets and vases of flowers, published by L. Tessier. It was common practice for cabinet-makers and specialist makers of marquetry to use engravings to create their designs, combining elements from two or more engravings to create a new composition.