André Charles Boulle 1642-1732
A New Style for Europe
In the seventeenth century, at the height on France’s success and prestige, André Charles Boulle gave birth to a new aesthetics, combining a level of a refinement and a virtuosity of execution that were unique in the world. The Sun King conferred upon him the title of Ebéniste Ciseleur et Marqueteur du Roi, and his creations, timeless masterpieces, were immediately coveted by crowned heads, princes and rich collectors throughout Europe. Boulle’s inovative genius in the spatial conception of shapes was accompanied by an unheard of mastery in the suse of gilt bronze, which he was the first to develop in works of art. He united it with marquetry, using the rarest materials : tortoiseshell, ebony, brass, yellow and red copper, tin, and precious coloured woods, the latter treated to create veritable floral pictures. Boulle’s technical prowess, which has never been equalled, is not only a contribution to the history of art and taste. Translated into modern terms it would mean a combination of the most audacious design with state of the art technology. The century of Louis XIV, which was also the century of Peter the Great, was a time of light and colours. This reference work forms an orginal reflection of this golden age, which saw the genesis of nearly all the attributes of modernity that were to flourish later on. The result of eight years of research and preparatory work by an international team directed by Jean Nérée Ronfort, this sumptuously illustrated book pays tribute to the artistic genius of the most famous cabinetmaker of all time.
Editors & Contributors: Jean-Nérée Ronfort, Ulrich Schneider, Jean-Dominique Augard, Peter Hughes and Tamara Rappe
472 pages, 354 illustrations
23 x 30 cm
Publisher: Somogy éditions d'Art