S otheby's biannual STYLE auctions in London, New York and Paris have become unmissable events for lovers of decorative art, from the Renaissance to the 19th century. From June 2022, Sotheby’s will pay tribute to the décor of the great Parisian stately homes, comprising important furniture and objets d’art with prestigious provenance, as well as more accessible pieces. It is precisely this fusion that brings such a particular character to these interiors, where beauty is the watchword.
Our Style sale will bring together more decorative sets from French and European collections, including a beautiful ensemble of Chinese porcelain-mounted gilt bronze. Another section will propose a group of Italian majolica and 17th century cabinets. These different periods and styles are likely to satisfy the curiosity of decorative arts enthusiasts.
When China meets Europe
In the Style sale, a collection of blue enameled Chinese porcelain with French gilt-bronze objects will be presented. During 18th and 19th centuries European imported massive quantity of Chinese porcelain, being very fond of their color and design. In order to display the items in the French interiors, they asked bronze makers to create mounts to embellish them. Lot 164 and 176 are a perfect example of the two designs : a typically Chinese maggot or a double carp shaped ewer with French gilt-bronze mounts.
Enlighting the Interiors
Lighting is one of the most creative practice for artists in the history of art. Scrolling foliages, mixing with porcelain, adding antique vases and ram’s head, all the decorative vocabulary has been used through centuries. Lot 160, a pair of gilt-bronze and Meissen porcelain two-light candelabra is typical of Louis XV, when lot 229, a pair of gilt-bronze three-light wall lights is a fantastic reminder of Louis XVI style. Lot 221, a pair of gilt-bronze two-light wall appliques, in the Louis XVI style made during the Restauration can still be used nowadays thanks to the piercement for electricity.
Reminding of the tradition of the Grand Tour in the 18th century, the Style Sale is presenting an interesting selection of European furniture. Lot 111, a giltwood mirror, 17th century, is inviting amateurs to Italy and its fantastic palazzi when a painted giltwood eglomised glass mirror, circa 1800, lot 213, evokes the Tuscanian way of life in the 19th century. Lot 112, a pair of painted-wood columns, 18th century, demonstrates the creativity of Spanish artists that we can also discover, with their sense of humor with lot 269 a marquetry commode, probably Mallorca, made as a house.