Well-known for his top-quality furniture, the 1900s cabinetmaker still holds great appeal.
François Linke (1855-1943), flat desk inlaid with leaves on all sides within purfling frames, the top inlaid with a lattice pattern, with two drawers in the apron and two false drawers, rich gilt bronze ornamentation, signed "F. LINKE", 79 x 177 x 95 cm/31.1 x 69.7 x 37.4 in.
François Linke's popularity is on the rise as witnessed by this desk that was expected to fetch no more than €20,000 and finally sold for €199,390 after a fierce battle. The piece is emblematic of the highly imaginative creations of this master of 18th-century pastiche. With its generous dimensions, rectangular top and gold molding, central recessed apron decorated with shells and gilt bronze mascarons, curved cabriole legs and bronze swags with espagnolette motifs, this desk takes its line and ornaments from French Regency models. For good measure, Linke added an 'X' crosspiece to the base to support a pair of putti. The cabinetmaker won a gold medal at the 1900 Universal Exhibition with a Louis XV-style kingwood desk, and he in turn inspired others. In the same spirit, a low curved sideboard with a grooved white-veined marble top and two inlaid doors decorated with gilt bronze garlands of flowers and musical and theatrical attributes fetched €34,544.
Equally decorative, but this time dating from the 1930s, an Art Deco chandelier in the form of stars decorated with glass beads sparkled at €22,860. It is attributed to the architect Charles Lemaresquier, notably renowned for the Félix Potin headquarters and the Cercle Militaire in Paris. This chandelier (165 x 127 cm/5.4 x 4.1ft) once adorned the boutique of the Lanvin house on rue du Faubourg-Saint-Honoré.