Rare Aesthetic Movement Corner Chair c. 1870-90

Rare and Fine Aesthetic Movement Carved Rosewood Corner Chair

Crest stylized with Butterflies among Sunflowers

Item # 130108ZTP12

Crafted distinctly in the form of the Chippendale corner chair, borrowing heavily from the "lowback" design of the American windsor chair while being entirely reinterpreted in light of Aestheticism, this chair is a very fine and possibly unique example of the heights of this period. The crest rail is crafted in three parts, the arm rails on either side joined beneath the upper crest section; all three parts are joined from beneath with screws, the entire facade then being carved with an intricate flow of Sunflowers amongst foliate surmounted by two facing butterflies. Typifying nature while not imitating it, the image is captured by knife with remarkable precision over a chip carved ground. The arms of solid rosewood wrap around the chair, terminating in scrolled sunk Sunflower handholds. The arrangement is found in works of Alexander Roux, Herter Brothers, Gillows and Gregory & Co. as well as some similar examples by the firm of Pottier Stymus - similar flower arrangements are found in marquetry and carved of the solid. The Butterfly, Daisy, Chrysanthemum, Sunflower and Anthemion motifs dominate the period, heavily borrowed from Japanism and the flood of importations from the Orient during the period.

The back of the rail is formed of two bent splats between each post, these splats laminated with rosewood veneers on the outmost edges; the face of the splats are carved with a somewhat imaginary honeysuckle and anthemion over the chip carved ground. The posts are finely turned solid rosewood with scratched channels, terminating at the end in a turned ring-and-ball arrangement that originally would have rested over caster wheels.

The result is highly accomplished, a work that in every way exemplifies the sentiments of the period. For the serious collector of fine antique furniture, this important evolution in the life cycle of the corner chair is an inspiring work of art that must be preserved for future generations.

Measurements: 25 1/2" wide x 25 1/2" deep x 28 1/4" high to crest; 17" high to seat

Condition Report: Upholstery in "poor" condition, stained throughout, threading and dirty. Numerous cracks reglued and repaired, including the crest rail, cracks along arm rail and where post joins rail. Sturdy, though lifting by the arms [never recommended] shows looseness between arm and posts. Chip to back of crest rail on right side, numerous abrasions to the legs and stretchers; back of slats shows veneer losses/buckling. Some scattered chips and losses to the carvings along the crest rail, coupled with the thin line where the three arm rail pieces come together. Caster wheels now absent. Overall, very comfortable and strong for regular use, the surface preserved with a fresh wax.

Item ID: 130108ZTP12


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Silla Fine Antiques


Silla Fine Antiques, Shippensburg, PA   

Period American Furniture, French Furnishings, Fine Nineteenth Century Art and Sculpture

Ruby Lane Shop Rating
Silver Rating Silver
Member since 2013

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