An Important George II Brass Inlaid Padouk Bureau Bookcase, in the Manner of John Channon
Height: 96" Width: 47" Depth: 24"
Inventory Number 8414-212
The molded domed cornice above a single beveled mirror front door flanked by engaged columns set on spreading pedestals; the vibrantly figured fall front opening to a fully fitted interior above two short and three long graduated drawers, on bracket feet. Retaining the original locks and hardware.
John Channon (1711-1779) was the son of a cabinetmaker recorded in Exeter in the early 18th century. By 1737, he had established his own shop on St. Martins Lane in London, advertising it as “upon the pavement” and married, eventually having five children. Most famous for a pair of impressive brass inlaid padouk bookcases which were supplied to Sir William Courtenay for the main library at Powderham Castle, Devon. One of which has a signed brass plaque engraved J. Channon Fecit 40.
This cabinet relates to a group of brass inlaid furniture which was attributed to Channon in the 1960’s by John Hayward. Much of these attributions were based on the design and construction of the Powderham cabinets. Displaying a definite Continental influence, Channon’s pieces are often characterized by the finely engraved brass mounts but also the use of extremely figured timber executed throughout with extreme craftsmanship. The present example also exhibits a typical feature of Channon construction, a mechanism which conceals the screws which hold the locks into place. This unusual hinged keyhole cover is released with a spring latch was used on several case pieces currently attributed to Channon.
Channon’s masterpieces are conserved in the following collections: Powderham Castle, Devon; The Victoria and Albert Museum, London; Kenwood House, London; Temple Newsam House, Leeds and the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge.