• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 7700

    Important English Furniture and Clocks

    22 January 2009, London, King Street

  • Lot 144

    A SET OF EIGHT GEORGE II BLUE AND GILT-JAPANNED SIDE CHAIRS

    IN THE MANNER OF GILES GRENDEY, MID-18TH CENTURY

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    A SET OF EIGHT GEORGE II BLUE AND GILT-JAPANNED SIDE CHAIRS
    IN THE MANNER OF GILES GRENDEY, MID-18TH CENTURY
    Decorated overall with Chinoiserie trellis and foliage, each with serpentine scrolled toprail centred by a shell, above a baluster shaped splat, the drop-in seat covered in green leather with gilt-tooled foliate border, on cabriole legs headed by shells, joined by curved and turned stretchers, with claw and ball feet, with batten-carrying holes, one drop-in seat in tan leather, decorated on the reverse, variations and restorations to the decoration
    Approximately: 40 in. (102 cm.) high; 21½ in. (55 cm.) wide; 22¾ in. (58 cm.) deep (8)


    Contact Client Service
    • info@christies.com

    • New York +1 212 636 2000

    • London +44 (0)20 7839 9060

    • Hong Kong +852 2760 1766

    • Shanghai +86 21 6355 1766

    The serpentined and flower-festooned parlour chairs, japanned in trompe l'oeil lacquer, are conceived in the whimsical Geroge II fashion fusing Roman and Chinese elements. The poets' concept of the 'Banquets of Gods' is evoked by their 'Jupiter' eagle claws and by bas-relief 'Venus' shells enriching the vase splats of their 'India' (Chinese) backs; as well as the lambrequined seats; and the truss-scrolled and acanthus-wrapped legs. Like contemporary Cantonese lacquered chairs their leather seats are similarly flowered.
    Other chairs of this pattern, but with caned seats and backs, include a set of six illustrated in H. Cescinsky, English Furniture of the Eighteenth Century, London, 1911, vol. I, p. 203, fig. 211. The name of the celebrated Clerkenwell 'Cabinet-Maker and Chair-Maker' Giles Grendey (d. 1780) has also been associated with these chairs. A similar green caned and japanned chair attributed to Grendey was sold, anonymously Sotheby's New York, 25 May 2000, lot 195. Grendey's label of the 1740s has been recorded on a related set of claw-footed and shell-enriched walnut chairs, as well as on chairs from the famed 'Infantado' suite of japanned furniture supplied by Grendey (C. Gilbert, Pictorial Dictionary of Marked London Furniture, Leeds, 1996, fig. 435).
    One from a set of six similar green-japanned chairs formerly at Ormeley Lodge, Surrey; and another six at Chequers are illustrated in M. Harris, The English Chair, pl. 28. Another almost identical chair, but with a caned seat and black ground is in the Museo Nazionale di Capodimonte, Naples (H.D. Molseworth and J. Kenworthy-Browne, Three Centuries of English Furniture in Colour, pl. 139).

    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.


    Provenance

    Anonymous sale, Sotheby's, London, 8 December 1978, lot 190.


    Pre-Lot Text

    THE PROPERTY OF A GENTLEMAN
    (LOTS 143-145)