Commode c1772, Christopher Fuhrlohg (active 1762 – 1787)

Marquetry of harewood, tulipwood, purplewood, sycamore, fruitwoods, holly, walnut, mahogany, box, ebony and other woods, with ormolu and brass mounts on an oak carcase with mahogany drawers.

Accession Number LL 4233

Commode c1772, Christopher Fuhrlohg

Fuhrlohg, originally from Sweden, trained as a cabinet-maker in Paris and came to England in 1767 or 1768 to work for John Linnell. He went on to set up in business on his own in London and produced furniture that, while unmistakably English, was of very pronounced French character.

In this piece, the breakfront form and the trellis parquetry reflect Fuhrlohg’s recent training in Paris. The medallion of Diana, however, is in the distinctive style of the painter Angelica Kauffman, who worked in London in the 1760s – 1770s. In fact, the medallion on a companion commode is signed in Latin, ‘C. Fuhrlohg, 1772, after Angelica Kauffman’. Fuhrlohg could have been following original drawings by Kauffman, for no engraved source for either composition is known.

The doors have been converted from sliding panels that originally ran on tracks under the case. The marquetry in the frieze is also a later introduction.