Alexander Roux Attributed Cabinet Reaches $33,400 at Freeman’s Auction

by John Werry on April 14, 2008

alexander roux attributed cabinet Alexander Roux Attributed Cabinet Reaches $33,400 at Freemans Auction

I watched a few items sell today via Ebay Live Auctions from the Freeman’s Auction sale in Philadelphia, which is local to me. The prices fetched during the sale were relatively strong from the cross-section of items that I was watching (note to self: remember to sell at Freeman’s next time).

This Alexander Roux attributed cabinet went for $27,000 ($33,400 with buyers premium) which was significantly outside of the range that Freeman’s had expected and outside of where I thought it would end up. I guess the economy is fairly healthy in Philly.

More pictures and details at the listing.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

LISE BOHM April 17, 2008 at 8:31 am

BAD ATTRIBUTION. CABINET WAS PROBABLY MADE BY THE FIRM HERTER BROS.

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admin April 17, 2008 at 8:59 am

Yes, off the bat the feet didn’t look Alexander Roux to me.

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Dr. Martin A. Folb April 18, 2008 at 12:11 pm

I found this cabinet fascinating, as I own one that is its more elaborate brother! My cabinet has a pâte-sur-pâte center oval plaque, and Pietre Dure inlaid panels. The cabinet was not “probably” made by Herter, it was ABSOLUTELY made by Herter! My cabinet is in pristine, original condition (unlike this one which is in very poor condition) and has one of the few, known ORIGINAL Herter Keys that is fashioned just like the Hardware on some of the Vanderbilt pieces. Only a handful of Pietre Dure cabinets exist as the U.S. Gov., at the time, was trying to tax the stone as jewelry which made its import extremely costly. Quoting from page 118 of the scholarly work by the late Catherine Voorsanger and Alice Frelinghuysen titled “HERTER BROTHERS-FURNITURE AND INTERIORS FOR A GILDED AGE” : “The date for the Kemp cabinet with the Pietre Dure panels coincides with an application the Herters made in January 1870 to the import-duty collector of New York to contest the fees they were required to pay on the “Florentine Mosaics imported by them”, which were intended as “ornaments for mantels, panels, etc.” as part of their argument, they claimed that “no more such goods will be sent them for some years”. It would appear that their assertation was correct, for few Herter pieces have survived with such mosaics; those that do date between the late 1860′s and early 1870′s.”
In addition, my cabinet has original, inset marble on the three flat surfaces, instead of the usual velvetine type material. It was obviously a special order for an important and wealthy client!

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admin April 18, 2008 at 12:22 pm

Martin, we’d love it if you’d post images of your cabinet in the forum: http://www.VictorianForum.com and thanks for the points on the import issues.

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