Christie's charge a buyer's premium of 20.825% of the hammer price for lots with values up to NLG 200,000. If the hammer price exceeds the NLG 200,000 then the premium is calculated at 20.825% of the first NLG 200,000 plus 11.9% of any amount in excess of NLG 200,000.
THE PROPERTY OF THE MUSEUM THONET, FRANKENBERG, GERMANY
Thonet Bentwood Chairs
When Vienna's Café Daum and Budapest's Queen of England Hotel began using bentwood chairs from the firm of Thonet in the year 1851, this innovative, light furniture set the style for the new bourgeoisie's meeting places. Soon, however, its popularity was so great and widespread, and its design quality so superior, that the bentwood chair moved far beyond this social sphere. Le Corbusier used it in his early buildings, for it fulfilled all the modernists' criteria for a new approach to design.
The bentwood chairs created by Michael Thonet (1796 - 1871) heralded the era of modern furniture design, indeed of a new, independent concept of design as such. They redefined the chair as an item of furnishing without any historical references, purely according to the functional qualities demanded of it. Michael Thonet had discovered the technique of shaping solid beechwood rods thermoplastically in 1856, a development which meant complex chairs could be produced with a gracefulness and elasticity hitherto undreamt of. At the same time, their clear lines and light weight lent them great mobility.
This led to the principle of organically and geometrically moulding material in furniture manufacture which has not only characterized Gebrüder Thonet furniture production in Frankenberg right through to the present day (for instance, in Lord Foster's design in the year 2000), but has also had a lasting influence on other 20th-century furnishing styles.
Thonet bentwood chairs initiated modular design: their individual construction elements were interchangeable and could be dismantled for transport. This flexibility together with their suitability for mass production gave rise to a chair which attained enormous popularity all over the world and can be regarded as an early example of "global design".
The creation of the tubular steel furniture, for example, from Mart Stam, Marcel Breuer and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, the laminated wood furnishings by Alvar Aalto, or the plywood chair by Verner Panton: all these products are almost unthinkable without the inspiration and technique derived from the bentwood chair.
Dr. Klaus Klemp, Frankfurt am Main, December 2000