A late Regency period ladies desk, almost certainly by John McLean,
London, circa 1820.
Why we like it
John McLean's furniture is rare to find but relatively easy to identify due to his distinctive style and a number of know examples bearing his firm's trade labels. We have sold a few pieces by John McLean before and are always happy to add further examples in our stock.
This elegant writing table typifies the work of the Little Newport Street and Upper Marylebone Street cabinet-makers John McLean and Son (active 1770-1822). The firm advertised that it specialized in 'Elegant Parisian Furniture' and many elements of the table have a clear French influence combined with English restraint. The table is made in Grecian black-lacquered wood which provided a dramatic contrast to the gilded metal mounts. The most dominant feature of the table's decoration is the lavish use of metalwork in cast and shaped brass. Closely related examples are illustrated in S. Redburn, 'John MacLean and Son', Furniture History, 1978, pls. 38A, 40A, 44A.
Regency Ebonised and Brass Mounted Desk, attributed to John McLean