Lucien Lévy-Dhurmer (French, Algiers 1865–1953 Le Vésinet)
Country of Origin Paris, France
Carved walnut and amaranth
146 x 207 x 315in. (370.8 x 525.8 x 800.1cm)
Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1966
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 813
This dining room comes from the Paris apartment of the engineer Auguste Rateau. The project was overseen by Lévy-Dhurmer, a ceramist who turned to painting and decorating. Each room was conceived according to a unified theme, in this case wisteria, a symbol of welcome. Lévy-Dhurmer entrusted the execution of his designs to a number of highly skilled makers. The woodwork and furniture were made by Édouard-Louis Collet, who covered the door and wall panels with perfectly book-matched quartered walnut veneer inlaid with purplish amaranth wood representing clusters of wisteria blossoms. The embossed leather chair upholstery was supplied by M. Leroy-Desrivières. The wool carpet was woven at the centuries-old Manufacture des Gobelins in Paris. The bronze-and-alabaster standing lamps were made by Falize Frères, a renowned Paris firm that produced high-end metalwork and jewelry. The fireplace surround was handworked by the metalsmith Jean Dunand.
Auguste Rateau, Paris (commissioned 1910–14 for his apartment, 10 bis Avenue Élysées Reclus; d. 1930); René de Montaigu, Paris (1950–66; purchased in 1950 with the lease for Rateau's apartment; sold to MMA)
Pascal Forthuny. "L'Art Décoratif Moderne: Une salle à manger du peintre Lévy-Dhurmer." La Renaissance de l'art français et des industries de luxe 2 (July 1919), pp. 290–94, ill.
Penelope Hunter in "Western European Arts." Metropolitan Museum of Art: Notable Acquisitions, 1965–1975. New York, 1975, p. 256, ill., calls it "Art nouveau room".
Patricia Bayer, ed. The Fine Art of the Furniture Maker: Conversations with Wendell Castle, Artist, and Penelope Hunter-Stiebel, Curator, About Selected Works from The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Exh. cat., Memorial Art Gallery of the University of Rochester. Rochester, 1981, pp. 78–85, ill.
Carol Vogel. "Inside Art: An Art Nouveau Room Thick With Wisteria." New York Times (November 23, 2007), p. E38.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art Guide. New York, 2012, p. 408, ill. (color).