This lacquered cabinet is divine. Its an incredibly rare Quinet design in an even more unusual color. I was lucky enough to find it in auction.
There were many very talented furniture designers working in France in the 1940’s – 50’s, and after, but one name stands out – Jacques Quinet – for the excellence of his work. The career of Jacques Quinet is difficult to define, as it spanned over five decades, and several radically different styles. It is a tribute to Quinet’s genius that he was so successful at navigating so many changes without compromising his work. He consistently produced designs with his characteristic elegance of line, deceptive simplicity, and perfect proportions.
When furniture designs are so pared down, the proportions must be perfect – there is no ornamentation to hide behind. The volume must appear light, even for larger pieces. One of Quinet’s great gifts was his prefect sense of proportion, developed, no doubt, through his training as an architect. He also had a fine sense of color, and used beautiful lacquered surfaces to enhance many of his pieces. This emphasis on refined structure and lightness also contributed to his success as an architect.
Another important aspect of Quinet’s furniture was his use of bronze. Quinet began by using bronze for simple ornamentation, but soon, the bronze elements came to define the forms of his pieces, and later, bronze asserted itself as the defining element of his work.
After 1947, Quinet participated in many important exhibitions – Art et Industrie, Siège au Pavillion de Marsan, Salon des Artistes Décorateurs, and others in France and abroad. He was soon securely established in Paris as one of the great talents of his time. He attracted many wealthy and important private clients, many of whom were his personal friends, designing furniture in his distinctive and elegant style, utilizing rare woods, such as sycamore, mahogany and cherry wood, and also beautiful lacquer surfaces, with bronze accents. He was honored to receive requests for his furniture for the prestigious Mobilier National, and in 1951, he decorated the residence of General Eisenhower at Marne-la-Coquette.