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Part of European Sculpture and Decorative Arts
Date: ca. 1736–52, with later additionsAccession Number: 63.228.1
Gilles Joubert (French, ca. 1689–1775)
Date: 1759Accession Number: 1973.315.1
Frame by Nicolas-Quinibert Foliot (1706–1776, warden 1750/52)
Date: ca. 1754–56Accession Number: 66.59.1
Date: porcelain late 17th century, mounts ca. 1745–50Accession Number: 1979.396.2a, b
Date: ca. 1754–56Accession Number: 66.60.2
Optical elements by Claude-Siméon Passemant (1702–1769)
Date: ca. 1750Accession Number: 1986.1a–d
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Devoted to the decorative arts of seventeenth- and especially eighteenth-century France, The Wrightsman Galleries (522–529, 531–533, and 545–547) display the Museum's holdings of furniture, Savonnerie carpets, gilt bronze, Sèvres porcelain, silver, and gold boxes. Since the 1963 acquisition of the paneling from the Hôtel de Varengeville and the Palais Paar with funds given by Mr. and Mrs. Charles Wrightsman, these rooms have borne the Wrightsmans' name.
Enriching the Museum's already strong collections of French decorative arts, many of the objects and furnishings on display here were gifts of Mr. and Mrs. Wrightsman. Superb carving, partly in high relief, constitutes the chief glory of the paneling which came from one of the private residences of eighteenth-century Paris, the Hôtel de Varengeville. Dating to about 1736–52, the decoration of the woodwork is still largely symmetrical and has not yet attained the full-blown phase of the Rococo style. Important among the furnishings in the room is the red-lacquered desk that was supplied by Giles Joubert to Louis XV for use at Versailles in 1759, and the set of seat furniture with Beauvais tapestry covers by Nicolas-Quinibert Foliot. It was commissioned by Baron Johann Ernst Bernstorff for his mansion in Copenhagen in 1754–56.
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