New York City, NY
Thomas Chippendale (1718–1779) has been a household name in the furniture world since the mid-eighteenth century. He is remembered today for the furniture produced by his successful London workshop as well as his influential book of furniture designs, The Gentleman and Cabinet-Maker's Director. To celebrate the three hundredth anniversary of Chippendale's birth, this exhibition will look closely at how the unprecedented publication cemented Chippendale's name as England's most famous cabinetmaker and also endured to inspire furniture design up to the present day.
Built around works in The Met collection, the exhibition combines the original preparatory drawings from the Chippendale workshop with a selection of British and American furniture inspired by Chippendale's designs and aesthetic. The artist's legacy will be presented through representations in portrait painting and revival pieces from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The Chippendale-inspired chair, designed in 1984 by the architects Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown, will be one of the highlights.
Accompanied by a Bulletin on Chippendale's Director by Morrison H. Heckscher, curator emeritus of the American Wing, published in concert with the exhibition.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website
Whether or not you go, Thomas Chippendale 1718-1779: A Celebration of British Craftsmanship and Design is an excellent companion publication celebrating the tercentenary of Thomas Chippendale's birth. Written by the Chairman and the Curator of the Chippendale Society, it covers 95 objects, including furniture, drawings, engravings, textiles and wallpaper, together with other contemporary and later material. Each entry is illustrated in color, with supporting images in both color and black and white. Also included are essays covering Chippendale's life and career, his furniture styles, his relationships with customers, and his legacy from the 18th century to the present day.
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