François Baudry’s stand at the Exposition des Produits de l’Industrie, 1827

Cabinetmaker François Baudry presented this curved bedroom set at the 1827 Exposition des Produits de l’Industrie Française. Probably commissioned by the cabinetmaker, the painting depicts him in front of his furniture, on his stand, receiving the bronze medal from the hand of the Duc d’Angoulême, son of King Charles X. The nacelle-shaped bed marks the triumph of the curved forms so popular during the Restoration. A true technical tour de force, it testifies to the cabinetmaker’s virtuosity in bending large sheets of veneer. Baudry uses five light-colored woods (ash, elm, lemon, oak and sycamore), which he combines in a skilful play of colors. Inlays of amaranth create oak and laurel branches, garlands of ivy and a crown of roses, while the veins of burls - the growths that develop on tree trunks - create graphic effects that were highly prized at the time. Thanks to a clever mechanism, the doors of the secretary and oval chest of drawers slide open to reveal secret drawers.

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