A pair of George II giltwood armchairs

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A pair of George II giltwood armchairs


Each with cartouche-shaped back, armrests and seat covered in yellow cut velvet, the foliate-carved channelled frame with outscrolled arms and rocaille-carved serpentine seat, on cabriole legs and scroll feet, re-gilt, both with pegged construction and previously with castors, both chairs with back seat rails replaced. 

These chairs are most closely related to an extensive set that was almost certainly supplied to Sir Edward Stanley, 11th Earl of Derby (1689-1776). The outline is almost identical with the same watery gadrooned frames but noticeably different husk trails and apron ornament. The Derby set is now largely dispersed, among them probably a pair now at Floors Castle and a pair sold at Bonhams, 2 March 2004, lot 109, which were subsequently with Malletts.

The outline of these elegant 'French Easy chairs' corresponds to one adopted by Thomas Chippendale (d. 1778) for his only recorded trade card of 1754 (C. Gilbert, The Life and Work of Thomas Chippendale, London, 1978, vol. II, p. 6, fig. 13). There is a design by Matthias Lock among his drawings in the Victoria and Albert Museum that closely corresponds to this pattern.

A related set of tapestry-upholstered chairs were executed for the Earl of Egremont in the early 1760s by the Soho upholsterer Paul Saunders (G. Beard, Upholsterers and Interior Furnishing in England, Yale, 1997, fig. 276).

  • Provenance: The yellow drawing room, Kelvedon Park, Essex.
  • English, circa 1760, one slightly later, circa 1800.

Height: 42 in; 107 cm
Width: 32 in; 81.5 cm
Depth: 26 in; 66 cmm

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