TUNBRIDGE WELLS SHOWROOM NOW OPEN

We are delighted to announce the opening of our new showroom in the newly-created destination ‘The Pantiles Arcade’ at the Corn Exchange, 49 Lower Walk, Royal Tunbridge Wells TN2 5TE. Three room sets featuring fine examples of Art Deco furniture, lighting, sculpture, glass and jewellery can now be visited on Tuesdays through to Saturdays 10am-5pm and on Sundays 11am-4pm. We are closed on Mondays. Clients are calling our space “spectacular”. A wide range of art glass, Georgian glass, early English porcelain, silver and Tunbridgeware is also available from our colleagues. We hope to welcome you soon. The Marsh Green showroom and warehouse remain open, currently by appointment. Please call or email us for further details: 01959 561234

Re-Opening Wednesday 14th April 2021

The Design Gallery Showroom and Warehouse will be re-opening on Wednesday 14th April from 10am-5pm. We will now be open every Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 10am-5pm, no appointment needed. You can also visit by appointment on Mondays and Tuesdays, please call John on 01959 561234 / 07785 503044. Sanitising station and social distancing provided.

6 to 10 seater Original Art Deco Cloud Dining Suite attributed to Epstein just arrived

A rare and original Art Deco extending Dining Suite, attributed to Epstein, that seats 6 up to a “cosy” 10 people. The table features stunning burr walnut veneers. Please call 01959 561234 or email: sales@designgallery.co.uk for the price and availability.

Suffragette (R) Jewellery Collection new additions

We are adding new necklace and bracelet designs to the Suffragette Jewellery Collection this week, including “Kamala” – a beautiful piece which features citrine, amethyst and white freshwater pearls. In the early American suffrage movement, gold (yellow) symbolised hope – while green was adopted by the British Suffragettes; purple stood for dignity and white represented purity of purpose and spirit.

At the Inaugration Day in Washington, references to the women’s movement were highly visible: President Biden saluted the early women’s marches; Vice-President Harris wore a purple coat; and performers Lady Gaga arrived at Capitol Hill in a white cape-coat by Matthew Williams for Givenchy, and Jennifer Lopez was glamorous in head to toe white Chanel and white diamonds.

PLACES TO VISIT NEAR EDENBRIDGE KENT

KENT: Chartwell, home to Sir Winston Churchill and his family for over 40 years, is 15 minutes’ drive from the showroom. The National Trust property is decorated as it was in the 1930s and includes glorious gardens, Churchill’s art studio and the largest collection of his paintings. https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/chartwell

Quebec House in Westerham, was the birthplace of General James Wolfe who achieved victory over the French army in 1759 at Quebec. Like Sir Winston Churchill, there is a statue commemorating him on The Green. The National Trust property has a pretty garden, second hand bookshop and activities for children. The house is open by tour only and closed some days  https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/quebec-house

The font in which Wolfe was baptised and a memorial window to him, “The Adoration of the Magi”  by Sir Edward Burne-Jones, can be seen in the Church of St Mary the Virgin in Westerham.

Down House in Downe was the home of Charles and Emma Darwin. http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/home-of-charles-darwin-down-house/

Hever Castle, the childhood home of Anne Boleyn, boasts 700 years of history and 125 acres of glorious gardens. https://www.hevercastle.co.uk/

Eden Valley Museum, Edenbridge features the social history of West Kent and has the recently discovered “Chiddingstone Hoard” of 10 gold coins on permanent display. It is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays and on some mornings. http://www.evmt.org.uk/

WEST SUSSEX: Standen in East Grinstead, is a beautiful Arts and Crafts house designed by Philip Webb, with interiors by Morris & Co., lighting by WAS Benson and William de Morgan ceramics. https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/standen-house-and-garden

EAST SUSSEX: Charleston, West Firle, near Lewes: the home of the Bloomsbury group’s Vanessa Bell and Duncan Grant. Closed Monday and Tuesdays (except Bank Holidays). https://www.charleston.org.uk/  You can combine Charleston with a visit to Virginia Woolf’s Monk’s House in Rodmell https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/monks-house and the Berwick Church murals http://www.berwickchurch.org.uk/bloomsbury%20at%20berwick%20home.html

Farley’s Farmhouse and Gallery, Chiddingly, near Lewes: the former home of American photographer Lee Miller and surrealist painter Roland Penrose. Open Sundays only until the end of October. https://www.farleyshouseandgallery.co.uk/

SURREY: Watts Gallery and Chapel, Compton, near Guildford: A remarkable Arts and Crafts Movement chapel, the gallery of Victorian painter/sculptor George Frederic Watts and Limnerlease, the home of Mary Watts and GF Watts. The Watts Gallery and Limnerlease are closed on Mondays (except Bank Holidays), the house requires pre-booked tour tickets. Mary Watts’ chapel incorporated early Christian art and Celtic symbolism, hand-crafted by the village residents. The gallery also shows paintings by their friends Evelyn De Morgan and ceramics by William De Morgan. https://www.wattsgallery.org.uk/

www.designgallery.co.uk

e: sales@designgallery.co.uk   01959 561234

Waring and Gillows

Gillow’s of Lancaster can be traced back to the luxury furniture and furnishings firm founded by Robert Gillow in 1730.During the 1730s he began to exploit the lucrative West Indies trade exporting mahogany furniture and importing rum and sugar. Following his death in 1772, the business was continued by his two sons, Richard and Robert. In 1764 a London branch of Gillow’s was established at what is now Oxford Street, by Thomas Gillow and William Taylor.

 

After suffering financial difficulties at the end of the 19th century the company began a loose arrangement with Waring of Liverpool, an arrangement legally ratified by the establishment of Waring & Gillow in 1903.

Waring’s of Liverpool was founded in 1835 by John Waring,  Belfast in 1835 and established a wholesale cabinet making business. He was succeeded by his son Samuel James Waring who quickly expanded the  wholesale cabinet making business. Throughout the 1880’s the company was known for furnishing hotels and public buildings throughout Europe. Samuel also founded Waring-White Building Company which built the Liverpool Corn Exchange, Selfridge’s department store and the Ritz Hotel.

 

 

 

 

 

Epstein Brothers

The quality of the furniture produced by the Epstein brothers of London’s East End is widely recognised as among the finest in the British Art Deco style – in terms of both design and production.

Sons of Morris Epstein, a Russian immigrant cabinet maker, and born in the early years of the new twentieth century, all six brothers followed their father into the furniture trade. Morris (also known as Solomon) retired in 1929 and his young sons, most notably Harry and Louis (Lou), went on to design and produce some of the most innovative furniture of the period.

Their style reflected the avant-garde influences of the Paris 1925 ‘Art Deco’ exhibition, seen in their use of curvilinear forms and rich veneers. These traits blended, almost unconsciously, with a certain grandeur and scale that derived from their family’s Russian background, and found expression in designs that were also in tune with the Modernist ethos emanating from continental Europe. The styling of the iconic ‘Cloud’ dining, lounge and salon suites, for instance, conveyed that sense of sunshine, fresh air and exercise that was promoted as the key to a healthy mind and body, and as an antidote to any lingering shadows of the horrors of the First World War.

Furniture in this ‘Art Deco’ style was produced, alongside the Georgian reproduction pieces that Morris Epstein had excelled in, from the 1930s until at least the 1950s. Finished to high standards, many pieces were custom-made in veneers of burr maple, sycamore or walnut. After World War II, several of the Epstein brothers, including Harry & Lou, David and Michael, and Sidney had showrooms in London, Manchester and Glasgow. A conservative, and singularly British, Art Deco style became the Epstein trademark.

During the Art Deco period the Epstein brothers traded under a variety of business names, both individually and in partnership with one or other of their brothers.  Art Deco pieces from before World War II were not signed. From the 1950s, some pieces were labelled ‘H. & L. Epstein Ltd’ or ‘Epstein & Goldman’. However, over the last decade a scholarly and painstaking approach to a variety of documentary and other sources has enabled a good number of Epstein designs to be identified with confidence.

August 2017

 

Frank Lloyd Wright

American architect and designer. Between 1888 and 1893 he worked in Chicago for Louis Sullivan, and the influence of Sullivan’s organic forms is apparent in his designs and writings. Wright’s early work displays close parallels with the development of Art Nouveau in Europe. From 1901 to 1913 he built a series of ‘prairie houses’ that combine low geometric forms and spaces with stylised ornament, For Wright, natural setting was crucial to his designs.

Otto Wagner

Austrian architect. Wagner encountered the work of Karl Friedrich Schinkel while studying in Berlin, and his work in Vienna illustrates the importance of classicism to Viennese Art Nouveau. In 1894 he was commissioned to design stations for the city, and in 1898 his two apartment blocks at 38 and 40 Linke Wienzeile were among the earliest examples of Jugendstil architecture in Vienna. Wagner joined the Secession in 1899, allying himself with the younger radical artists. His Post Office Savings Bank (begun 1903) exemplifies his modern classicism.

Charles Francis Annesley Voysey

English architect and designer. After working for the Gothic Revival architect D Seddon, Voysey began his own firm in 1882. He was a central figure in the Arts and Crafts Movement, joining the Art Workers Guild in 1884 and showing at the Arts and Crafts exhibitions in London from 1893. Chiefly remembered for his simple houses, he also designed patterns and furniture during the 1880s that displayed a lyricism which anticipated Art Nouveau.

Eugene -Emnanuel Viollet-le-Duc

French architect and writer. The self -taught architect Viollet -le -Duc was the most famous proponent of the Gothic Revival in France. He was best known for restorations at Pierrefonds and Notre Dame cathedral in Paris, but despite his reverence for the Gothic, he was also a critic of eclectic historicism. His lectures Entretiens sur L’architecture (Treatises on Architecture; 1863 -72) advocated the adventurous use of iron and glass. Art Nouveau architects including Victor Horta, Hector Guimard, Antoni Gaudi and Louis Sullivan all cited Viollet as an influence.