Jean-Gabriel Imbert (1735 – 1795), known as “Imbert l’aîné”, was one of the most important Parisian clock makers of the last quarter of the 18th century. He was born in Devalon in Bourgogne in 1735 and came to Paris as a young man to complete his apprenticeship with his brother-in-law Jean-Charles Olin. Exercising at first as an independent, he became a maître in 1776 and opened his own workshop. Rapidly gaining fame, he was elected deputy of his guild in 1780. Imbert signed his clockworks “Imbert l’aîné”.
In 1767 Jean-Gabriel Imbert was based in the Carrefour de la Roquette, in 1781 in the rue Planche-Mibray, three years later in the rue des Arcis and at the time of his death in June 1795 in the rue de Monceau.
Imbert was one of the best clock makers and dealers, and was only satisfied with the best quality. As such he used only the finest suppliers including Richard and Gaspard Monginot who made his springs while his dials were generally made by Georges-Adrien Merlet, Elie Barbezat or Bezelle. He obtained clock cases from a number of Parisian bronze casters, notably Robert and Jean-Baptiste Osmond, Nicolas Bonnet, Michel Poisson, François Vion, Jean Goyer, René-François Morlay and Léonard Mary, and these cases were gilded by Le Cat and H. Martin.
During the 18th century, his clocks were acquired by the most influential connoisseurs, such as the Marquis de Brunoy, the Duke des Deux-Ponts, the Viscount de Rochechouart and the wife of the extremely wealthy Farmer General Jean-Maurice de Faventines.
Discover the Empire mantel clocks by Jean-Gabriel Imbert and other artists in our gallery.