DESTER

MASTER 1774

This ebeniste was active until at least 1790. working in the rue du Faubourg-Saint – /ntoine. His work, which is very distinctive, usually takes the form of light pieces of furniture, tables and bonhcurs-du-jour with marquetry in a loz­enge pattern, the centres decorated with a florcttc. The woods used, satinwood, and stained maplewood, create a harmonious blend of pale-gold and green. The shapes are simple and the decorative use of gilt- bronze mounts is restrained. Godefroy Dester also made a number of pieces in mahogany as well, close in style to the work of Weisweiler and Benneman. The mounts are very sober, the distinction resting largely in the beauty of the woods. The only recorded piece of elaborate furniture by Dester is a commode formerly in the Collection of the Earl of Plymouth. In this, highly ornate gilt-bronze mounts are combined with plaques of Paris porcelain. This commode formed one of a pair bought by the Comte d’Artois in 1785 from the marchand-miroitier Delaroue, established at 4 rue de Verrerie at the sign ‘A la Toilette Royale’. They adorned the bedroom of the prince at the Palais du Temple. Paris, and were designed for his toilette; for this purpose they were fitted with boxes lined in blue chamois to hold toilet utensils. It seems that Delaroue was seeking to emulate the porcelain-mounted pieces in which Daguerre specialized.

(3781 (left) Toilet commode stamped Dester, decorated with Haris porcelain plaques It he largest also shown enlarged), made under the supen’ision of the

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Jean-Jacques Gautier: Le Garde Mcublc’ in: La Folie

d’Artois. 1988. p. 115

F. de Salverte: Les £benistc$. p. %

(3831 Bonheur-du-jour stamped Dcstcr, с. 1780. (Archives Galeric Perrin. Paris)

[385J Commode stamped Leleu, с. 1780; the marquetry of arabesques in bois sating on a sycamore ground and the large oval cartouche arc designed to mask the horizontal division of the drawers. {Sotheby’s Monaco, 26 May 1979. lot 33)

Jean-Franqois