Servitude and Splendor: The craftsmen and carved furniture of the Rappahannock River valley, 1740 to 1780

Editorial Staff Furniture & Decorative Arts

May 2008 | By 1740 a colonial elite of well-to-do merchants and landowning planters had emerged in Virginia. With riches from tobacco production supplemented by investments in the profitable iron industry, they were fully prepared to engage artisans and to  commission houses and furniture in the latest European styles that would express and solidify their economic status. This trend was …

Sleeping beauties

Editorial Staff Furniture & Decorative Arts

Beds recently offered at auction and antiques shows demonstrate a rich area of the decorative arts in which provenance and personal history is key. At the Bonhams New York sale of American furniture this past February, the top lot was a rare Herter Brothers bedstead that was made around 1872 for the master bedroom of Milton Slocum Latham’s Thurlow Lodge …

Maison Gerard at 35

Editorial Staff Furniture & Decorative Arts

Dealers, decorators, and clients came out in full force last night to raise a glass in celebration of Maison Gerard’s thirty-fifth anniversary. Packed into the gallery’s East 10th Street showroom, well-wishers got an intimate look at the firm’s fine selection of art deco furniture—a marble-topped rosewood and burl cabinet by Louis Süe and André Mare, a macassar-ebony extension table taking …

A new setting for Iliad Antik

Editorial Staff Furniture & Decorative Arts

Trumeau commode with drop-front desk and vitrine, Austria, c. 1820-25. Walnut veneer with gilded capitals, glass, and gilt bronze mounts; height 65 7/8, width 37 13/16, depth 20 11/16 inches. Secretaire by Eugene Praz, France, 1929. Palisander veneer with ebony and burled amboyna, fruitwood and brass inlay, brass; height 64 3/8, width 38 5/8, depth 17 11/16 inches. Credenza by …

Time Flies: A daylight savings reminder

Editorial Staff Furniture & Decorative Arts

This 18th century cartel clock from the Horace Wood Brock collection, featured in the March issue of ANTIQUES, aptly depicts the fleeting nature of time, is particularly appropriate  this Sunday, when are clocks, now mostly digital, are turned ahead one hour. Brock’s stunning collection is a reminder of an age when instruments of timekeeping were not just practical necessities, as …

Endnotes: Boston needlework

Editorial Staff Furniture & Decorative Arts

We were prepared to pay considerably more, so were happily surprised,” says American needlework dealer Carol Huber about her successful bid on this charming Boston canvas-work picture, offered at the first auction of American furniture and decorative arts held by Bonhams in New York in mid-January. When she saw it in the catalogue, she thought the presale estimate of $6,000 …

Wedgwood in the nineteenth century

Editorial Staff Furniture & Decorative Arts

March 2009 | The Wedgwood ceramics manufactory, which celebrates its 250th anniversary this year and is one of the oldest potteries functioning today, has been the subject of numerous monographs, exhibition catalogues, journal articles, and even a novel.1 Yet most of these publications have dealt with the life of, or period of production dating to the lifetime of, company founder …

Red, white, and Tiffany blue

Editorial Staff Furniture & Decorative Arts, Magazine

The ambitious transformation of the White House by Jacqueline Kennedy (1929–1994), which began in 1961—from a hotel-like assemblage of department store reproductions to a living museum of fine American antiques—was so greatly admired that many people believed those interiors would be thenceforth immutable. But nothing at the White House is forever, as that first lady came to realize about her …

Harbor & Home

Editorial Staff Furniture & Decorative Arts

March 2009 | In October 1955 the Boston Herald decried the sale of heirlooms from a late seventeenth-century house in Duxbury, Massachusetts, that had descended in the family of John (1599–1687) and Priscilla Alden, the Pilgrim lovers immortalized by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807–1882) in his 1858 epic poem The Courtship of Miles Standish.1Promoted by Longfellow and other Gilded Age writers …

American studio ceramics at mid century

Editorial Staff Furniture & Decorative Arts

March 2009 | Mourning the loss of aesthetic purity in the modern age, Susan Sontag once wrote that “[I]n a world that is well on its way to becoming one vast quarry, the collector becomes someone engaged in a pious work of salvage.”1 There are countless reasons why people become collectors. Doubtless there are many reasons that Philip E. Aarons, …