A fine Altona Rococo/Louis XVI transition walnut and giltwood mirror cabinet, the arched top adorned with silvered and giltwood carvings above mirrored door, enclosing shelves and small drawers, flanked by cut-off corners with foliage ornaments, the lover commode with curved bracket front-mounted and adorned with gilt bronze openwork handles and key plates. C. 1770–1780. H. 268 cm. W. 118 cm. D. 58 cm.
The rare North German cabinet furniture piece from the transition period between Rococo and Classicism is a masterpiece of the workshop of Johann Friedrich Köster, 1747–1812. In 1774, Köster became the official guild master of Altona, which was one of the most important European areas of furniture production in the 18th century.
The Altona furniture was in the 18th century commissioned by the North German and Danish aristocracy for decoration and furnishing of castles and manor houses in Schleswig-Holstein, Copenhagen, Potsdam and Dresden, and was a symbol of status and great wealth.
This mirror cabinet is depicted and described in the book of Annette Isabell-Kratz: Altonaer Möbel des Rokoko und Klassizismus, Hamburg, 1986: Photo, no. 10. p. 191. and verified as manufactured by Johann Friedrich Köster.
Provenance: Avening Court, Gloucestershire.