Attributed to Richard Parkin (1787-1861)

Philadelphia, c. 1835

The carved crest element centered on the top edge of the curved crest tablet back with highly figured veneer and inlaid brass stringing, held between paneled stiles capped with stylized Ionic capitals, the carved stay-rail with a bold applied central rosette above upholstered slip seats above mahogany rails on lotus-carved console legs.

H: 33¼”  W: 17½”  D: 21½” each

Condition: Excellent: One front leg with an old repair at the seat rail, retaining a mellow old surfaceThe slip seat frames are original and the upholstery is modern. The slip seats have been freshly reupholstered since the photos were taken.

These chairs are identical, except for the addition of the brass string inlay, to an example at the Philadelphia Museum of Art and have been attributed to Richard Parkin in the article “‘A Shadow of a Magnitude’: The Furniture of Thomas Cook and Richard Parkin”.[1]

The design is clearly inspired by ancient Greek Klismos chairs yet is entirely original and does not reflect any known pattern book drawing of the period.

[1] Boor, Philadelphia Empire Furniture (West Chester, PA: Boor Management LLC., 2006), 311, fig. 167, and Carswell Rush Berlin, ‘”A Shadow of a Magnitude’: The Furniture of Thomas Cook & Richard Parkin,” edited by Luke Beckerdite American Furniture (Hanover, N.H.: University of New England Press, 2013), 182, fig. 48.

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