Cabinet-maker & Bronze-caster
Rare Rock Crystal Chandelier
Height : 155 cm (61 in.) ; Diameter : 110 cm (43 1/3 in.)
Exceptional ormolu and rock crystal twenty-four-light chandelier. Made of cage form, the central stem cast with bulrush and a fruit-filled vase, issuing twenty-four scrolled candlearms hung with rock-crystal fruit-form drops and prisms.
Provenance : Property of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
(Listed in archives files, Private collection).
François Linke, born in 1855 in Bohemia (Czechoslovakia), worked as a cabinet-maker, rue du Faubourg-Saint-Antoine in Paris from about 1882 until his death in 1946. In 1900, at the apex of his career, he opened a new shop at the famous Parisian place Vendôme. He specialized in Louis XV and Louis XVI style furniture: all pieces were beautifully mounted with gilt-bronze ornaments, and he received numerous commissions. Later Linke decided to collaborate with the well-known sculptor Léon Messagé (1842-1901) and integrated new lines and shapes announcing the “Art Nouveau” style. His great success is definitely the 1900 Universal Exhibition where he was awarded the gold medal for his extraordinary kingwood desk, designed by Léon Messagé. At this occasion, the “Revue artistique et industrielle” commented that “Linke’s stand is the biggest show in the history of art furniture”.