WITH VISTA THROUGH THE ATRIUM AND PICTURE-GALLERY TO THE CONSERVATORY
|THE CHASE—MOTIF FROM DRAWING-ROOM PLAFOND BY P. V. GALLAND. DESIGNED BY CH. DAVID.|
DESIGNED BY GOUTZWILLER.
In the Drawing-Room we find a more frank indulgence in color, a more pronounced love of ornament for its own sake, than in any portion of the house. The walls are stretched with red velvet, profusely embroidered, and studded with cut crystals of every shade; these variegated flashes of jewelry are introduced in the figures of butterflies applied to the stuff, and seemingly attracted to the profuse bowers of embroidered blossoms, which cluster in arches just under the cornice, leaving the centre-spaces of the panels bare in their crimson breadths.
|CORNER, WITH LIGHTS AND REFLECTORS.|
DESIGNED BY L. LIBONIS.
|PORTION OF THE "FETE" |
PAINTED BY GALLAND DRAWN BY THURWANGER.
PRINTED BY LEMERCIER
of culture, and also to inherit the wealth with which palaces are built. M. Gallands ample compositions are to be found in the establishments of Baron Rothschild, at London,
|TABLE, IN GOLD AND PEARL. DESIGNED BY R. M. LANCELOT.|
of Prince Nariskine, at St. Petersburg, of Mme. de Cassin, at Paris, and in the royal palace at Stuttgard; he has recently finished one of the great wall-paintings for the Pantheon, at Paris, where he comes into well-sustained competition with Puvis de Chavannes and Cabanel; this serious and elevated composition represents the Preaching of St. Denis; and he has also just terminated a design for tapestry representing Henri IV., destined to take the place of the likeness of Napoleon III. in the Apollo Gallery of the Louvre, where it will form the pendant to that of Louis XIV. M. Galland, in fact, with Baudry and Puvis, is one of the four or five great decorative artists now living.
|PORTION OF LINTEL AT WINDOW. DESIGNED BY R. M. LANCELOT.|
His government has shown a sincere appreciation by invoking his aid at all the national establishments where his qualities can be made useful: thus he is professor of decorative composition at the Beaux-Arts School, director of the works at the Gobelins manufacture of tapestry, government commissioner at the porcelain factory of Sevres, and, of course, an officer of the Legion of Honor. An artist of such importance should be better known in America, where it is a matter of pride to keep well abreast of the catalogue of contemporary renown; yet, save in this and in one other private mansion of New York, it would be impossible to point to one of his works in the new world. The ceiling-composition in this residence is in the artist's best style; it shows his ready mastery of every device of the charmer, the abundance of his invention, his facility and elegance, and his ability to be forcible without overloading a plafond-subject with unseemly vigors. The never-ending frieze of personages whose procession winds around the coves is in no part sombre; it is successfully lifted into the full air and sunshine of its imaginary elevation among the clouds; it is not too deeply modelled, but every form is an agreeable silhouette, neither flat like a Greek vase-painting, nor projected like a Rembrandt portrait; in addition, what the decorator has no right to lose sight of for a moment, every figure is a shape of beauty. The festive catholicity of the subject allows the artist to introduce almost any form of the picturesque, and in so doing he always keeps to the level of the subject; among the round arms of the vintage-maidens, posing on their heads the flat corbeilles***baskets***, he is familiar and jocund; among the veneurs***hunters*** bringing in the boar, he is hearty and Rabelaisian; among the knights going to the jousts, he is gallant, noble and sedate; and he rises to the height of medieval purity and distinction among the lovely dames, each fit for the queen of a love-parliament, over whose delicate heads is lifted the standard, "Plus que valeur, beaute triomphe."*** more than value, beauty triumph***
|WEST CORNER OF DRAWING-ROOM |
WITH PORTIONS OF GALLAND'S FETE
DRAWN BY ESQUIRON. PRINTED BY AUBRY
The carvings and furniture in this room deserve special attention. Most of the latter was designed and made in New York, but there is a pair of cabinets by Barbedienne of Paris, flanking the west entrance, inlaid with mother-of-pearl in a framework of gold, and bearing five Limoges enamels by Serre. The elegant device for the frame enclosing these enamels is shown on page 55***below***.
|A SUNNY NOOK IN THE DRAWING-ROOM. |
DESIGNED BY GOUTZWILLER
an elegant table of fire-gilt bronze or or-moulu, by the same maker. The manufacture of cloisonne enamel, by the method employed in China and Japan, has never been understood in Europe; but Barbedienne has several times accomplished the same result by sheer power and wilfulness, merely doing without the labor-saving secret which saves the Oriental half his work - repudiating that, because nobody in the West knows the use of the gum with which the Eastern workman attaches his cloisons to the bronze. Barbedienne's stupendous traceries in enamel look rather like champleve than cloisonni, on a very close inspection; rather as if the space between the colors was dug out, leaving the delicate divisions standing- like a honeycomb of gold; but, however his wizard familiar permits him to do it, the Paris bronze-founder turns out a cabinet that is the perfection of taste; for the designs of his doors and plaques are Persian architectural designs, and they apply themselves to the doors and surfaces in great sheets of enamel, whose figures enter into the structure architecturally, which Chinese designs would never do. This singular casket, in which ivories and lacquers are kept, is one of the greatest triumphs of headstrong and unnecessary ingenuity which French cleverness has effected. Mother-of-pearl, very freely used in both the architecture and the furniture of this saloon, strikes the highest key in the octave of colors in the decoration, of which the lowest is the crimson of the walls and carpet, while a middle value is attained by a very lavish use of gold. The rounded corners are colorless, however, by a singular caprice; these cold intervals being an elaborate arrangement of mirrors and silver statues, nearly life-size; these singular niches, among all the glow and color, come upon the eye almost like ice-grottoes.
|FORTUNE, STATUETTEBY A. MOREAU-VAUTHIER.|
|ANTIQUE CHATELAINE, WITH LADY'S WATCH BY LE ROY ET FILS. |
DESIGNED BY R. M. LANCELOT.
The mother-of-pearl, seen everywhere seen, carries off, however, the high note of the silver and the reflectors with ingenuity and elegance. Its use here suggests for what unexpected effects it may be depended upon, even in architecture. Thus, in the broad cornice which unites the walls to the coves, the panelled woodwork design is covered with pale metallic-green gilding on a ground of mother-of-pearl. Mother-of-pearl, inlaid with invisible joinings, sheets the gold tables; and mother-of-pearl, bending over the rounded angles of the Barbedienne cabinets, catches the light like the shields in a trophy, and strikes a changeable decorative note which repeats itself from ceiling to floor of the apartment.
|CORNER IN THE DRAWING-ROOM|
WITH CLOISONNE CABINET
DRAWN BY M. GAULARD PRINTED BY LEMERCIER
|BRONZE FIRE-GILT TABLE, WITH CLOISONNE ENAMEL CABINET|
BY BARBEDIENNE.DESIGNED BY CH. GOUTZWILLBR.
Among the rarities of which the saloon is full, it is impossible to overlook the two statuettes carved out of solid ivory; they are both by Augustin Moreau-Vauthier, superintendent of plastic ceramics at the Sevres factory. No living sculptor, except perhaps Cordier, has studied more than this artist the infinite applications of sculpture to decorative ends. Of these two figures, the Cupid, with a pedestal of trifling height, measures an altitude of nineteen inches; and it is hard to detect a joining in the ivory; the Fortune, a somewhat larger figure, poises on a globe of turquoise blue, with various supporting figures and attributes; the latter statue was exhibited life-size, in bronze, at the Triennial Exhibition in Paris in 1883. Both are completely adapted for parlor admiration; they are thoroughly elegant, refined and artistic, without deep mythological meanings to disturb the equipoise of the evening caller. Cupid, balancing one of his arrows in the guise of a dart, is a peculiarly living, elastic figure.
|ONE OF THE SILVER LAMP-BEARING STATUES.|
DESIGNED BY CH. DAVID.
Represented in the photogravure plates are found the following: Plate containing a group of five objects. In the centre is a curious ivory watch. It is of English manufacture, having on the back the national St. George with the dragon. The movement, which of course is not ivory, is signed "Bushman." - The gold-mounted snuff-box above it is marked with the maker's initials, "F. J.;" it is of the Napoleon epoch, and the enamel on the lid, representing an enamored pair running to the Fountain of Loves, is a favorite subject of Prud'hon's which the Paris goldsmith still loves to repeat on his fine opera-glasses and card-receivers. The other snuffbox, below, fairly copies the shape of a Dutch boat, and looks like Dutch manufacture; the hold, supposed to be charged with the finest tobacco, is approached by a comparatively small hatchway in the middle of the deck. Landscapes like those on the Dutch tiles, canal-views and castles, a human figure twice as tall as the buildings, constitute the ornament of this quaint old object.
|STATUETTE OF CUPID IN IVORY|
SCULPTURED BY MOREAU-VAUTHIER
The metal is completely covered with enamel on all sides, and the piece must have been a difficult one to fire successfully, owing to the risk of unequal heating, and of the enamel flying from one side or the other; the edges and hinges are gold. At the sides are two vinaigrettes; one, attached to a finger-ring, is of porcelain, painted with a maiden pursued by Loves, in the taste of Greuze; the other is enclosed in a perfect ivy-tod of gold, with Cupid looking out from among the leaves; this difficult piece of goldsmith's open-work imprisons the scent-bottle, in rock crystal.
|FRAME FOR AN ENAMEL IN ONE OF THE PEARL CABINETS.|
DESIGNED BY LAMBERT.
Plate with Snuff-Box and Double Miniature. The snuff-box is of the date 1630, and the enamel is of dark lapis-lazuli blue, in which is set a round miniature; the latter may represent Anacreon, receiving Cupid and the Graces. The unusual size of this piece, with its antiquity and destination, make it peculiarly interesting. The makers mark is " L. F. T." An inscription in Russian letters is found inside, thus interpreted: " His Excellency Alexis-Theodore Lechovechu, 30 March, 1630" The twin miniature representing the children of Lady Lake, two fine boys set face to face in a double case, is signed "H. E." The frame is gold, enclosing on the back a pretty Wedgwood cameo in the blue-and-white, representing a nymph pouring libations on a flaming altar, encircled with a ring of lapis enamel; a half-effaced inscription, of which the last word is doubtful, seems to perpetuate the sadness of a widow's or bereaved mother's heart: "Le triste Souvenir est pour LAme tin Bien"***The blade is sad remembrance Although tin***, plus precieux que les Heures qui Brillen"***Hours precious than that Shine***. The urchins, looking like Eton boys of the period of Shelley and Canning, are painted with great elegance.
Represented in the design on page 52***above*** is an antique chatelaine of gold, to which are hung a variety of quaint toys, including a gold watch the size of a finger-ring. The timepiece, hardly large enough for Titania, is of old French manufacture, of an epoch when Robespierre had not yet swept away the kings; it is signed "Le Roy et Fils, Horlogers du Roi, a Paris, No. 19,734."
|Snuff box of his Excellency A. T. Lechovechu; and miniatures of Lady Lake's children.|
|A CORNER IN THE DRAWING-ROOM|
|PORTION OF FRIEZE AND CEILING|
PAINTED BY P. G. GALLAND
DRAWN BY THURWANGER. PRINTED BY LEMERCIER
|PORTION OF THE "FETE"|
FRIEZE IN THE DRAWING-ROOM BY P. V. GALLAND