American examples of this form rarely come on the marketplace. Beautifully proportioned and retaining its original screen, this one displays finely articulated Rococo carved decoration that is likely the work of one of the talented carvers working in New York in the third quarter of the eighteenth century.1 The masterful needlework panel depicting a shepherd and shepherdess tending their flock is itself a work of art and speaks to the accomplished needlework skills of its original owner.
Several related mahogany New York firescreens are known. One richly embellished example with related carving was sold in these rooms, Important Americana from a Private Collection, January 22, 2011, sale 8776, lot 80. Another at Winterthur Museum has a very similar bulbous standard and a needlework panel of a shepherd and shepherdess in a pastoral setting.2 Another one retaining its original needlework panel has been illustrated by Israel Sack Inc.3
1 See Luke Beckerdite, “Immigrant Carvers and the Development of the Rococo Style in New York, 1750-1770,” American Furniture 1996: pp. 233-306.
2 Joseph Downs, American Furniture, Queen Anne and Chippendale Periods, New York, 1952, no. 241
3 Israel Sack Inc., American Antiques from Israel Sack Collection, Volume IX, P5970, p. 2417 and.
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