Enfilade

Lost and Found

Posted in exhibitions by Editor on December 7, 2009

From the website of Sue Bond, Public Relations: Specializing in Fine Art, Antiques, and Cultural Events:

Burlington House Commodes Return after 150 Years
Royal Academy of Art, Burlington House, London, 27 July — 31 December 2009

John Mayhew and William Ince, attributed

Securely recorded in the collection of the Hon. Charles Compton Cavendish (1793-1863), later 1st Lord Chesham, who inherited Burlington House in 1834, the commodes were almost certainly made for his father, Lord George Cavendish (1754-1834), later 1st Earl of Burlington, who moved to Burlington House following his marriage in 1782 and who is known to have commissioned a quantity of related satinwood and marquetry furniture at this period. There is also evidence that the commodes were specifically altered as part of the remodelling of the state apartments at Burlington House for Lord George Cavendish in the early 19th century, having added side panels of that date which are shaped to match the re-configured profile of the walls and skirting in these interiors.

Removed from Burlington House when it was sold in 1854, the commodes remained in the Cavendish family at Latimer, the family seat in Buckinghamshire, until they were sold by John Compton Cavendish (1894-1952), 4th Baron Chesham, at Sotheby’s in 1945 when it was clearly stated in the catalogue that they came from Burlington House. The commodes then entered the collection of the 2nd Lord Glenconner who sold them at Christie’s in 1957 (£5,040) when the Burlington House provenance was overlooked and the connection was lost and not recovered when they were sold again at Christie’s in 1984 (£59,400). It is only thanks to Joseph Friedman who spotted a label on the reverse of one of the commodes that their history has again come to light. (more…)

Conservation at the Frick

Posted in the 18th century in the news by Editor on December 7, 2009

Press release, dated 30 November 2009, from the Frick’s website:

Joseph Godla, Chief Conservator of the Frick Collection, photo Michael Bodycomb

The Frick Collection is pleased to announce that it has been awarded a $1 million challenge grant by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. When matched over the next four years with $3 million in contributions from other sources, the grant will create a $4 million endowment for the position of Chief Conservator, also providing, in perpetuity, funds for research, professional development, and related expenses. Comments Frick Collection Board Chairman Margot Bogert, “Change happens in perhaps less obvious ways at the Frick than elsewhere, which for many of our enthusiasts is an attraction. However, in the last decade, the institution has experienced an exciting level of growth and advancement in its curatorial and conservation departments. The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has been involved in these efforts in significant ways, generously funding a vital curatorial fellowship program and contributing support for the endowed position of Curator of Decorative Arts. With this latest grant, we have the opportunity to create a firm foundation for permanence and growth in the vital area of conservation.”

Adds Director Anne Poulet, “The establishment of a formal Conservation Department at The Frick Collection is a relatively recent event. We are extremely proud of the superb team now in place, led by Joseph Godla, and the myriad ways in which he and his staff care for our holdings and the beautiful mansion that houses them. We depend daily on the remarkable skills and watchful eye of this department, whose efforts extend collaboratively into research and education. In helping us meet the challenge grant, our supporters will ensure that this area of the Collection’s stewardship continues, while also making possible the staff’s broader contributions within the conservation community. It is an exciting prospect, and we are deeply grateful to The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for making it possible.” (more…)

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