John Channon 1711-1783

In 1742 John Channon established himself as a cabinet maker on St Martin’s Lane, St Martin’s-in-the-field, London, within the direct locality of Thomas Chippendale’s workshop. His work is famed for its high Rococo taste and brass inlay of exceptional quality and style, heavily influenced by the works of Boulle and the French furniture designers. He is most famed however for two pieces of furniture now owned by the Victoria and Albert museum and on display at Powderham Castle, Devon. The bookcases are of huge proportions, with elaborate and distended broken pediments, the corners are mounted with vast trailing ormolu dolphins and the pair exudes a strong architectural robustness. Each one of his pieces is categorised by wonderfully ornate mounts; elaborate key escutcheons and serpentine or bombe form, most notably a pair of back to back library writing tables (circa 1750-55) possibly commissioned by Alderman Beckford for Fonthill Splendens or his London town house. Channon was one of the greatest of the 18th century cabinet makers.