Ref. 1849

Pair of “Chinoiserie” Pelmets and their Four Tieback Holders

Circa 1870

Painted wood

Dimensions of Pelmets :
Height : 50 cm (19,7 in.) ; Width : 177 cm (69,7 in.) ; Depth : 21 cm (8,2 in.)
Height : 50 cm (19,7 in.) ; Depth : 172 cm (67,7 in.) ; Depth : 20,5 cm (8 in.)

Dimensions of Tieback holders :
Height : 29 cm (11,4 in.) ; Width : 24 cm (9,4 in.) ; Depth : 21,5 cm (8,5 in.)

Amusing pair of Chinoiserie painted wood pelmets and their four matching tieback holders. They are decorated on both sides with golden lake landscapes on a black background and highlighted with geometric nets framing a central cartouche representing for one the pearl trade and for the other the presentation of the necklace. The whole is crowned with a dragon with outstretched wings.
The tieback holders are each decorated with a seated dignitary richly dressed in traditional costume.

historical and artistic context

Knowledge about China remained sketchy and confused for a long time, full of fantasy, particularly during the 18th century, during which China exerted a real fascination.
There are many examples, such as the Chinese Garden by F. Boucher exhibited at the Salon of 1742, preserved at the Museum of Fine Arts and Archeology in Besançon and which will influence Decorative Arts in a lasting way.

This taste for Chinoiserie was revived at the end of the 19th century following the Franco-English military campaign against the imperial army in China in 1860. Napoleon III’s French troops bring back part of the treasure from the Summer Palace, constituting in 1863 the famous Chinese Museum of Empress Eugénie at the Palace of Fontainebleau. First in painting, the movement quickly spread to decorative arts and furniture.

This craze for the Far East is encouraged in France by the diffusion of Chinese ornamental works renewing the interior decoration of the luxurious Parisian residences of a clientele eager for something new.

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