Side chair

Artist: Giles Grendey (1693–1780)

Date: ca. 1735–40

Culture: British, Clerkenwell, London

Medium: Lacquered and gilded beech; caning

Dimensions: Overall: 41 1/2 × 21 1/2 × 19 3/4 in. (105.4 × 54.6 × 50.2 cm)

Classification: Woodwork-Furniture

Credit Line: Gift of Louis J. Boury, 1937

Accession Number: 37.115


The increase in trade between England and the Far East engendered a fascination for things Chinese in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. This chair, though made in England, is decorated in imitation of Chinese lacquer, and the central splat bears an image of a mandarin with an umbrella. According to the original label still affixed to the chair, it was made by Giles Grendey of London, who "makes and sells all sorts of cabinet goods, tables, glasses, etc." The chair is one of some eighty such miscellaneous pieces that Grendey supplied on order to the duke of Infantado for his castle of Lazcano in Spain.