Furniture from the Regence period of the early 1700s incorporates elements from the reigns of Louis XIV and Louis XV, the preceding and subsequent styles, respectively. A beautiful example of this balance can be seen in our hand-carved walnut commode en arbalete from Lyon, France. Although the overall form is rectilinear, the chest of drawers has supple curves provided by the crossbow-like front, whose form is mirrored by the slightly overhanding quarter-round molding of the top. Both ends of the top have a significant in curve, offering a sharp juxtaposition to the two recessed linear panels that comprise the side of the main body beneath.
The sinuous front consists of two tiers of full-length drawers beneath two half-drawers. All four drawers have large arabesque bronze handles, set within a rectangular molding embellished with a pierced, attenuated demi-lune leaf on the outer edge. A similar carving can be seen in the center of the two longer drawers, but with the leaf having a circular form with curled edges. The mullion between the two half-drawers has a smaller version of the round leaf that is more oblong. All four legs are blocked, with the front two being more splayed and thinner than the back two. The shapely apron is enhanced by an asymmetrical leaf stalk noix that accentuates the prominent bundles of leaves that adorn the pilasters above the front legs. With its brown hue and golden accents that have been enrichened by multiple layers of French wax, our period Regence commode will make a fantastic addition to any bedroom, hallway, or living room.
CONDITION: Good antique condition with minor nicks, rubs, and losses. Traces of old woodworms, which have been filled. Also, old fills and restoration to age separations, with a few remaining. No key.