The present pair of chairs originally belonged to a set of three chairs acquired by Spink & Son from the collection of General Cluzeau, 25 Febraury 1925. One of the chairs was sold to Mr Hanrahan on 30 October 1928 and was donated to the Albany Institute of History and Art and is exhibited in the Hanrahan Memorial Room. The remaining pair of chairs was sold by Spinks in 1929 to Lucien Hamilton Tyng (1874-1933), one of the co-founders of the General Gas and Electric Company. A single chair, possibly the Hanrahan example or one from the present pair, is illustrated and discussed by Edward F. Strange in Chinese Lacquer, London, 1926, p. 44, pl. XXIII (see fig. 1).
The production of carved cinnabar lacquer furniture of large size is extremely time consuming, and the current lot displays the most skilful craftsmanship of the Qianlong period. Few examples of lacquer furniture dating to the 18th century have survived in the Beijing Palace Museum collection. Compare a carved cinnabar lacquer cabinet with similar dragon motif against waves within a border of lotus scrolls, illustrated in Furniture of the Ming and Qing Dynasties (II), The Complete Treasures of the Palace Museum, Hong Kong, 2002, p. 247, fig. 210, and another a carved cinnabar lacquer throne chair in the Shanghai Museum, illustrated in Zhongguo Qiqi Quanji, vol. 6, Qing, Fujian Publications, 1993, p. 183, fig 216.