• Focal Point - The Nicholas Gif auction at Christies

    Sale 5975

    Focal Point - The Nicholas Gifford-Mead Collection of Chimneypieces & Ornament

    29 October 2009, London, South Kensington

  • Lot 120

    A GEORGE III GILTWOOD CHIMNEYPIECE

    CIRCA 1760, WITH LATER JASPER SLIPS

    Price Realised  

    A GEORGE III GILTWOOD CHIMNEYPIECE
    CIRCA 1760, WITH LATER JASPER SLIPS
    In the rococo taste, the frieze profusely carved with garlands of fruit and flora, the central eagle poised with outstretched wings, supported by scrolls, flutes and volutes
    58 in. (149.2 cm.) high; 78 in. (198.2 cm.) wide; 6 in. (17.2 cm.) deep; the opening 42¼ in. (117.3 cm.) x 47 in. (119.4 cm.)


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    During the 1960s the present chimneypiece was considered to be of such high quality that a copy was made in pine for the Green room at Winfield House(1), Regents Park, residence of the American Ambassador in 1969. Winfield House was built by the American heiress Barbara Hutton in 1938 and gifted by her to the American Government in 1945. When Walter H. Annenberg became ambassador in 1969 the house was renovated by the interior decorator William Haines and his partner Ted Graber. Mr Haines's bills provide detailed descriptions of the work and furniture supplied and his most significant transformation was the Green Room. Alongside the copy of the present chimneypiece, 18th century wallpaper was purchased from Townley Hall nr Drogheda in County Louth Ireland, and the broken pediments over the doorways were modelled on those in the North Hall at Claydon House, 1750. Haines's invoice states: copied superb example of carved Chippendale mantelpiece with eagle centre in old pine with waxed finish; installed with new green marble slips and hearth (2)
    (1)
    See Maria Tuttle and Marcus Binney, Winfield House 2008, Thames & Hudson pp.78-79
    (2)
    Ibid p.32.

    Special Notice

    No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 15% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.
    This lot will be removed to an off-site warehouse at the close of business on the day of sale - 2 weeks free storage


    Provenance

    By repute, Pitt Place, Ewell, Surrey. T.Crowther, North End Road, London in the 1960s.