This lot has no reserve.
"Drawing-Room in Modern Gothic." A. Kimbel and J. Cabus, New York.
"Art for art's sake" was the theme surrounding the Aethetic Movement within American design history. Within furniture manufacture, this transitional style between the revivals of the mid-nineteenth century leading into the Arts and Crafts was characterized by the use of ebonized wood, stylized flowers and natural motifs. The influences of English reform designs and thinkers, such as Christopher Dresser, Edward Godwin and Charles Locke Eastlake, were central to creating this completely American look to furniture.
Eastlake's ideas of decorating were originally run in periodicals and later incorporated into a decorating handbook, Hints on Household Taste, published in America in 1872. This publication emphasized simplicity and honesty of construction and materials. For furniture, Eastlake encouraged ebonizing lesser woods, the use of incised decoration and turned moldings. Furniture manufacturers such as Kimbel and Cabus of New York City, utilized these ideas in creating their work from 1870-80.
Anthony Kimbel and Joseph Cabus worked together from 1865 to 1882. Kimbel had previously worked with New York cabinetmakers Anthony Bembe and Charles A. Baudouine, while Cabus is believed to have worked with Alexander Roux. As partners, they designed furniture characterized by geometric shapes, linear decoration, and the use of other materials. Their knowledge of the Rococo, Gothic and Rennaissance revivals was central to their construction and structure of pieces as seen through the architectural form. Though their partnership lasted less than twenty years, their designs remain recognizable and highly prized in today's marketplace.
Aesthetic Movement manufacture was not isolated to ebonized furniture, but also incorporated the use of other materials, such as, faux bamboo made from tiger maple, wicker and animal horns.
American Furniture and Decorative Arts