An Egyptian Revival Salon Suite

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Object Description

An Egyptian Revival, Mother of Pearl, Green Stained Fruitwood and Abalone Shell Inlaid Iron Mounted Padouk and Marquetry Salon Suite.

This important suite comprises a settee and two matching armchairs and a centre table. The settee with a rectangular tripartite panelled back the top-rail surmounted by an eagle probably Horus on down scrolled arms supported on iron lions with a drop-in leather upholstered seat on Egyptian turned front supports terminating in paw feet and rear animal legs and paw feet joined by stretchers the whole decorated with Egyptian and geometric motifs each armchair similarly decorated, the table with a square top inlaid with a roundel and stylised foliage with scarab at each corner the frieze with Egyptian motifs on winged Egyptian turned supports terminating in paw feet joined by an x-form stretcher centred by a globular finial.

French, Circa 1920.

Object History

After a first Egyptomania period following the Napoleonic excavations, and a second one after the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869, the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb in 1922 by Howard Carter and the 5th Earl of Carnarvon led to a revival of the Egyptian taste throughout the world and the present suite is a fine example of this.

The quality of materials and construction would suggest an English or French production but its origins may even be Egyptian, namely the Madrasa Craft School in Touhk. The school workshops became well known for this type of Egyptian revival furniture blending European taste with archaeological aesthetics and exhibited in the International Fair of Cairo in 1926 where they were highly praised. Special commissions from King Farouk for the royal residences followed as well as from the mayor of Cairo (see a suite of furniture, sold Christie’s New York, 24 May 1984, lots 333-341).

A fine desk with very similar decoration to the present suite by the Madrasa Craft School of Touhk, once in the collections of the Earls of Carnarvon, was exhibited in the Louvre Museum, Egyptomania, (Humbert, nr. 346, pp. 520-521).

Object Literature

Jean-Marcel Humbert (ed.), Egyptomania: L’Egypte dans l’Art Occidental 1730-1930, Paris, 1994.

Approximate Dimensions
Canapé: Height: 109 cm, Width: 142 cm, Depth: 56 cm
Armchairs: Height: 108 cm, Width: 77 cm, Depth: 56 cm
Table: Height: 71 cm, Width: 64 cm, Depth: 64 cm

Object Details

Dealer Opening Times

By appointment only.

Dealer Contact

+44 (0)20 7495 2324
+447500 832323

Dealer Location

Audley House, 3 The Grange
Albion Street, Brighton
West Sussex BN42 4EN

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