Another venture between Lages AB and Lutson,
with at the center of attention this 18th century chair
Abondance full polychrome on a silvered ground.
At Lutson we are known for our gilt leather reproductions.
Even though interior designers are our main clientèle.
What we try to do is to adapt this ancient craft to the demands of the designers,
this with out denaturing the essence of the craft.
And not loosing our soul in the whole process.
At the occasion of Maison & Object I had a long meeting with our Miami distributor
John Nelson http://jnelsoninc.com
At his request we made a set of samples which you can see in his Miami Showroom.
First originality, he asked for some designs for a solid painted background no metallic showing
combined with a mastered “ton sur ton” painting
Here two Almohadon panels for the collection
The arches around the shelves have been painted in metallic oil paint
The already popular design Eve from the Brinkmann Collections by Lutson.
Also a solid painted background, the embossed ornaments were painted
The Lauderdale fully painted as well
Soon to come the other samples ordered by John Nelson.
All this and so much more to be seen in John’s Miami showroom
Autumn – Winter Collection of Atelier Versace. 1999 – 2000
around the 2nd minute you will see some Diva’s dressed in
Lutson’s Abondance, Silvered with Gilded Birds and Beige background
If you were to look at the complete video I wouldn’t blame you.
You will see Stars and Dazzling Bombshells.
Video by Fashion Channel
Finaly, here some pictures of the Antependium of the church of Mont
Verentuil Antependium they have chosen “blend in colours”
Mont is located in the French department of the Hautes Pyrenées
Way in the mountains close to the Spanish Border
The interior of the church is just restored, it took a team of three painters two years
to restore the wall paintings.
The Church of st Bartolomeo was build in the 12 century and embellished as time passed by.
Last added was the altarpiece at the end of the 17th century
Next to the alter my friend Alain Lacoste from Atelier 32 the excellent restorers whom took care of the altarpiece
amazingly enough the old altarpiece, which was a painted fresco type altarpiece was conserved behind the “new” sculpted altarpiece.
Mont is tiny village of less than 100 inhabitants, in the 80’s they were less than 20 inhabitants !
Yet, amidst this little community they build this treasure.
The Tapestry Room at ISGM
I’m quite an amateur of the eclectic mix of contemporary furniture and antiques.
Or antique furniture with modern art.
I love the lived-in interiors, not too neat nor too neglected, rooms filled with memories and faded colours.
This dining area in the Tapestry Room at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum is in his “medieval” ways just splendid.
At ISGM they describe the Tapestry Room as follows:
“The Tapestry Room is one of the few galleries affording room to wander freely. The sense of space and openness that visitors will discover in the restored Tapestry Room will be amazing—and unexpected for many—and a celebration of Gardner’s original vision.”
—Gianfranco Pocobene, Head of Conservation
While the Tapestry Room was being restored we were asked to reproduce the Giltleather for the dining room chairs .
Some of the original leather panels traveled to our workshop and in cooperation with the conservators we provided new Giltleather.
From the original Giltleather some was gone beyond salvation, mostly the seats.
One back of a chair, though severely damaged, was in good enough, readable state to allow us to recreate the right gilding and the matching colour palette.
The design that lined the chairs is the one we call the “Korfus” and it’s actualy one of the first moulds we made,I believe it will stay on the catalogue ….. forever !
Pictures above are courtesy of Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum Boston. Many thanks.
This is the back of a Swedish Baroque chair, ornate with the original leather. The seats are worn and lost, the remaining leathers have been removed from the chair and are now stored safely.
color samples have been made at first.
Along with Annika our Swedish distributor http://www.lagestapetserarverkstad.se we discussed the matter of how unusual the Putti looks
Indeed you will notice that he looks like a grown man, which is quite unusual.
The fact is that the we find him not looking like a Putti at all, but a naughty Eros thats what he is !!
The real identity of our Swedish Eros was revealed by Sophie & Jean Marc form www.academiededessin.net
He is no less than Gérard Depardieu 😉
Unfortunately we don’t have a panel with putti’s in our collection.
so we produced 3 Aboncance panels.
The Abondance is from the same style and period. Here painted in a similar coloursceme.
I think the chairs will look very nice.
As soon as Annika and Leif have the chairs finiched I’ll post some pictures.
This Verentuil has an Antiqued Gilded ground.
As background paint a burgundy colour was required.
Instead, Lut decided to use two shades of burgundy in order to accentuate the central medallion.
Bleu and Pink were also on the list of the designer.
Usualy some of the leaves are painted in shades of greenish earth colour
Here the greens have gone and been replaced by a bluish colour
Finally the pink went on the Plumes forming the central theme.
This Sample goes to our London showroom at Tatiana Tafur Ltd.
It will also help Tatiana or Andy by showing the customer a possible interpretation of his requests.
And it will be easier to make adaptations based on this existing panel than from some loose colour swatches.
I guess we soon will be updated on the customers comments.
The Dragon 1745 – 1760
The Dragon is the only “real” Rococo design in our collection.
It was made in the right period of time, undoubtedly by a talented ornamentalist. Just looking at the quality of the sculpture tells the story.
Rococo is all about Grotto’s and Rocaille. Nature is slightly twisted, its sensual, unusual and fascinating, it creates an environment that helps escaping the threats of the real world.
Escape reality and live in your own beautiful world was the message. It was the privileged and yet fearing situation of those who lived at the court in Versailles under the reign of Louis XV
Dragons lived in grottos. That’s why the Dragon fits in the whole picture with natural ease. It’s rooted in the romantic European past and it’s venerated in the exotic and in those days unreachable Far East.
The ornamentalists thought it had to be a special Dragon not one breathing fire and sulfur, not one that kills and leaves behind a scene of desolation and destruction.
It had to be the most kind of Dragons a Dragon that gives life and beauty, a reassuring Dragon. The Good Dragon had to be a female Dragon that breathes water from which the Flowers sprout and Life spreads in all its generous beauty.
In 2002 the “Deutsche Tapetenmuseum” Kassel
purchased the Dragon tapestries that were fitted in a room form “Kasteel De List” in Shoten near Antwerp
Das Tapetenmuseum has a fabulous collection worth a visit.
The Famous Herter Brothers Side Chair
In the early days of 1995 The Metropolitan Museum of Art orders
two Gilded Leather panels for an exceptional piece of furniture.
It turns out to be a side chair.
Made in 1881 by the leading New York cabinet makers and Interior decorators “The Herter Brothers”
The side chair was part of a huge project for William H. Vanderbilt.
“In May 1880 when Herter Brothers received the profitable contract for designing, decorating and outfitting Vanderbilt’s large New York mansion, it was a crowning achievement for the firm, providing the brothers with the opportunity to create the epitome of the cosmopolitan environment with few financial constraints. They were superbly matched with their client, who wanted a grand interior to equal his elevated social and economic status, who embraced the firm’s predilection for mixing eclectic styles as an indicator of culture, who relished and could afford the Herter’s lavish use of luxurious materials, and whose public stature would ensure lasting fame for Herter Brothers’ designs. “
Quote: “Wendell Garrett”
This Famous side chair was going to be part of a traveling exhibition entitled
“Herter Brothers: Furniture for the gilded age”
Organized by the Metropolitan Museum of Art and The Museum of Fine Arts Houston and held in 1995
As often the case, when the spotlight shines upon a forgotten name or an exceptional talent that went out of the picture, not only does it create stupefaction, it also reveals hidden treasures.
Indeed, little later four more chairs appeared in the Mid-West and sold for a considerable price at Sotheby’s
Also a single side chair turned up and we were to supply the same leather as for the Metropolitan chair. Eventually in 2008 this same chair came on auction at Sotheby’s. Setting a new record for a Herter Brothers chair.
Here you will find a link to the article written by Wendell Garrett on the Herter Brothers and more specifically on the side chair. Published by Artnet.com
for those of you who don’t want to click the link please find here a copy of the text.
By Wendell Garett
A traveling exhibition entitled “Herter Brothers: Furniture for the Gilded Age” was organized and held in 1995 by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston. In that groundbreaking show on Gustave Herter and his brother, Christian — New York’s leading cabinetmakers and interior decorators in the late 19th-century — was a single Herter Brothers dining room side chair. Originally made for the palatial William H. Vanderbilt residence on Fifth Avenue, it was one of the two known examples from a set of at least 18. The chair is currently on permanent exhibition in the American Wing of the Metropolitan Museum in New York.
Since then, four more side chairs from the suite unexpectedly turned up in the mid-west, and sold at Sotheby’s New York for $99,000 on June 24 in a 19th-century furniture and decorations auction.
In 1848 the young cabinetmaker and woodcarver, Gustave Herter (1830-1892), left his native Germany and emigrated to New York City. By 1858, he owned what would become a leading New York cabinetmaking and interior decorating company. Together with his younger brother, Christian (1839-1883), who arrived in New York in 1859, they formed Herter Brothers, which became one of the most respected firms not only in the city but in the whole country.
Herter Brothers created cosmopolitan environments encompassiong every aspect of interior design, including furniture and woodwork, wall and ceiling decoration, floor treatments and drapery. The firm’s clients were among the most visible and affluent of the era — the White House, Mrs. Mark Hopkins, Jay Gould, J. Pierpont Morgan and William Henry Vanderbilt, who during 1880-1882 was building his mansion at 640 Fifth Avenue.
A writer in the Decorator and Furnisher in 1887 claimed that “every private residence ever before constructed in America is entirely eclipsed by the house of the American railway king, Mr. William H. Vanderbilt.” It was estimated that 600-700 men worked to complete the huge Beaux-Arts house that occupied the entire block between 51st and 52nd Streets. The total expense was approximately $1.75 million. Interior decorations and furnishings alone were said to have cost about $800,000 — more than had ever been spent on the interior of any other American house.
William Henry Vanderbilt (1821-1885) was the son of the financier and railroad promoter Cornelius “Commodore” Vanderbilt (1794-1877). When his father died, William Vanderbilt inherited the bulk of an estate estimated to be worth about $90 million. In less than a decade he had more than doubled that sum. Like many Herter clients, Vanderbilt spent most of his life in business, and was able to enjoy his dream palace for only three years before he died.
Relatively free from the lingering influence of historical styles and European guild traditions, the Herter factory was able to take certain liberties in its cabinetmaking, carving, gilding and upholstery. Thus a chair in the Second Empire style, which by French convention might have been made by a menuisier of gilded or painted wood, in the Herter’s hand could become a vibrant combination of imaginatively upholstered, carved, ebonized natural wood decorated with marquetry or ormolu and highlighted with gilding.
Herter examples have a vivid and adventuresome appearance; they frequently contrast rich rosewood veneers with bright marquetry bands and classical imagery. Part of the firm’s success was due to its exceptional ability to create handcrafted, luxury products in an industrial environment. What also distinguishes Herter furniture from its English counterparts of this era is its assertive, complex, floriform marquetry decoration, as opposed to painted and often figurative English surfaces.
In May 1880 when Herter Brothers received the profitable contract for designing, decorating and outfitting Vanderbilt’s large New York mansion, it was a crowning achievement for the firm, providing the brothers with the opportunity to create the epitome of the cosmopolitan environment with few financial constraints. They were superbly matched with their client, who wanted a grand interior to equal his elevated social and economic status, who embraced the firm’s predilection for mixing eclectic styles as an indicator of culture, who relished and could afford the Herter’s lavish use of luxurious materials, and whose public stature would ensure lasting fame for Herter Brothers’ designs.
Indeed, the Vanderbilt house garnered considerable notice during its day, most of it focusing on its immense size and cost. The house also achieved lasting posterity from its being published in two lavish limited-edition, multi-volume publications, both appearing in the 1880’s. This remarkable house was demolished in 1946.
The dining room was of oak carved in the Neo-Renaissance style, as was typical of dining rooms in the 19th century, and appeared solid, somber and rather dark. Motifs such as swags of fruit, putti in full relief and low-relief classical vases from which emanate symmetrical floral tendrils were found on the furniture as well as on the built-in buffet and cupboards, which housed some of Vanderbilt’s collection of 18th-century continental porcelain.
The dining room chairs were carved of oak to be en suite with the surrounding woodwork. The carved crest rails depict fruit, nuts and flowers, which allude to the function of the room. The chairs’ solidity is belied by the delicacy of the carving. Symmetrical, stylized foliage climbs the square-sectioned legs. The side stretchers are a conceit of the carver’s art: they appear as separate elements — a loop, a chain link and two square rings hang from the center of the side seat rail and join each leg by means of a sash carved to look as if it is looped through each square ring. The stretchers seem to be attached to the legs by means of Egyptian palmettes at either end. Corners of brass cut into ornamental profiles highlighted with incising to conform to the shape of the carved ornament cover the top of the legs just below the seat rail. Brass also covers the “sock” portion of each leg, and a narrow strip is affixed by means of floral-headed screws to the edge of the chair back.
Furniture historians have tended to disparage the quality of American design during the years following the Civil War, and not without some reason. But Herter Brothers’ rational approach, its uncompromising quality and impeccable craftsmanship, and its ability to identify the best in many cultures and embrace it as its own, have set the firm apart from the majority of other furniture factories.
The decades following the Civil War, at once brilliant and depressing, dramatize the contradictions within American culture. During the rich confusion of this era, we became industrialized and developed a new life in an Eden that had embarrassingly outgrown its old patterns and institutions. We produced the most amazing gallery of powerful and picturesque personalities we have ever fostered — some ethically corrupt, economically ruthless and politically incompetent, others dreamers and reformers who carried utopias in their heads and men who had money to spend without knowing very well how to spend it.
The ruthless accumulation of wealth and uninhibited display of possessions by “captains of industry” such as Vanderbilt reflected the laissez-faire social Darwinism of the American aristocracy. “Who knows how to be rich in America?” demanded E. L. Godkin in the Nation in 1866. “Plenty of people know how to get money; but not very many know what best to do with it. To be rich properly is a fine art. It requires culture, imagination and character.”
WENDELL GARRETT is senior vice president of American decorative arts at Sotheby’s.
Finally dont miss the amazingly complete article on the W.H. Vanderbilt house at 640 Fifth Ave NY published by