Auguste-Hyppolyte Sauvrezy (1815-1884), was born in Laon on May 7th 1815. Following his apprenticeship he moved to Paris where he fulfilled his desire to learn about classical sculpture and cabinetmaking, attending art classes and travelling to Italy.
By the 1840's he had opened a shop and manufactory at 23 rue de Turenne and 97 rue du Fauborg-Saint-Antoine, as a furniture maker and upholsterer. He specialised in classical forms and ebonised furniture often incorporating rare and fine hard stone inlays and veneers. Later in his career he ceased to do upholstery and turned his attention to the design and creation of exhibition quality sculptural furniture often in the Renaissance style.
He exhibited at many of the major exhibitions of the nineteenth century including the Paris Exposition Universelle in 1855 where he exhibited ebonised furniture, carved and gilded and the the 1867 Exhibition where he showed design furniture. He was awarded a gold medal at 1878 Paris Exhibition where he exhibited bedroom furniture in the Louis XVI style. It was received to great acclaim, contemporary commentators stating that:
"... he was a glorious modern ébéniste, similar in genius to those of the renaissance, which through his training he was familiar with. His work is distinct, noble and elegant."
Wallis George writing in the Art Journal of 1867 commented on the illustration of a cabinet, now in the Musee d'Orsay, that:
“Mr Sauvrezy a principle ébéniste of Paris allows us to engrave one of his many beautiful cabinets. It is a production of much grace, designed with exceeding skill, and manifesting great refinement in the finish of all the parts.”
He died in 1884 at which time his furniture, and the wood carvings that adorned his workshops were auctioned.
Art Journal: ‘L'Exposition universelle de 1867’, Paris, 1867, pl.322.
Alcouffe Daniel - Bascou Marc - Dion-Tenebaum Anne - Thiébaut Philippe: ‘Le Arti decorative alle grandi esposizioni universali 1851-1900’, Milan, 1988.
Ledoux-Lebard, Denise: ‘Les Ebenistes Du XIXe Siecle’, Paris, 1965, p. 571