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    Sale 2811

    European Noble and Private Collections

    24 - 25 June 2008, Amsterdam

  • Lot 651

    A REGENCY BRASS-MOUNTED CAST-IRON FIREGRATE

    THE DESIGN ATTRIBUTED TO GEORGE BULLOCK, EARLY 19TH CENTURY

    Price Realised  

    A REGENCY BRASS-MOUNTED CAST-IRON FIREGRATE
    THE DESIGN ATTRIBUTED TO GEORGE BULLOCK, EARLY 19TH CENTURY
    Of sarcophagus form, the tablet back above a curved basket front, on paw feet and rectangular stepped plinths
    67 cm. high x 84 cm. wide x 38 cm. deep
    Together with an ormolu and patinated bronze fender with a pierced greek-key gallery flankd by a sphinx to either side, probably French, late 19th Century - 114 cm. wide (2)


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    An unsigned pencil drawing at Tew, but inscribed in George Bullock's hand 'Plan of Stove in Dining Room and Oak Study' appears to confirm the attribution to George Bullock (1778-1818) of the distinctive 'sarcophagus' design these two firegrates are based upon (C. Gilbert and A. Wells-Cole, The Fashionable Fire Place, Temple Newsam House, Leeds, 1985, p. 30, cat. no. 22). The Grecian-pedimented and palm-flowered grate is of sarcophagus form, derived from the Pantheonic 'Tomb of Agrippa' (illustrated in E. Harris, The Furniture of Robert Adam, London, 1963, fig. 112). It is designed in the French Antique fashion, popularised by the connoisseur/collector Thomas Hope in his guide Household Furniture and Interior Decoration, 1807.
    The Tenterden Street cabinet-maker and upholsterer, George Bullock was employed at Tew Park shortly after it was purchased in 1815 by Matthew Robinson Boulton. Bullock had previously opened 'Grecian Rooms' in both Liverpool and London's Piccadilly, and had executed the prestigious commission to furnish the St. Helena residence granted by George, Prince Regent to the defeated Emperor Napoleon. Four grates directly copying the unsigned drawing were sold from Tew Park at the 1987 Christie's house sale: lots 4, 27, 48 and 155. One of these grates was subsequently sold anonymously, Christie's, London, 23 November 2006, lot 66. And a related grate is sold Christie's London, Thomas Hope and the neoclassical vision, 24 April 2008, lot 28.

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