German. Second Quarter Of The Eighteenth Century.


Height: 30 3/4" (78 cm)
Width: 54" (137.2 cm)
Depth: 23" (58.4 cm)


Of giltwood.  The probably original white marble top supported on two profusely carved profoundly shaped legs headed by carved female busts, the frieze centered by a carved satyr mask, the legs joined by a carved stretcher centered by a pierced cartouche, the sides similarly carved in the rococo taste.

Handwritten name Schneider to underside of marble top
Paper label to rear of Backrail: 596 Darmstadt, Frkfrt (Frankfurt?)
Old stencilled inventory number to inside of back rail 7448

Herr ? Knipschildt who was the wealthy Danish Managing Director of the East Asiatic Company which was based in Vladivostok prior to the Russian Revolution. The table was sold by his descendants.

It is a testament to the quality of design and execution of this table, and that of its pendant in the Museum of Applied Arts, Cologne* (figure 1), that it has been the subject of much conjecture as to its authorship among leading academics. This tour de force of rococo carving is perhaps one of the most dynamic, expressive and free-flowing examples of sculpted furniture made in mid-18th century Germany.

Its design is highly original and appears to owe little debt to previous console table prototypes. It is particularly notable for the opposing female busts that head each scrolling leg. Most unusually, they are carved completely in the round and represent two individual young females, one with a distinctive three-pointed cap and the other with naturalistically flowing hair. The figure bearing the cap is remarkable for being portrayed as apparently in the act of speech and projects the impression of a dialogue between the opposing busts.

This singular conceit places the table in a very small category of furniture that may be considered as true sculpture. The rococo ornament is no less remarkable and is imbued with a fire-like sense of movement, which is particularly apparent in the wavy stretcher. Throughout the table there is an unstudied freedom of execution, lending the piece a somewhat spontaneous quality.

Full research report available on request.

Full research report available on request.