Lady Lever Art Gallery: Catalogue of Commodes

 
9780112905325: Lady Lever Art Gallery: Catalogue of Commodes

The Lady Lever Art Gallery in Port Sunlight houses an unrivalled series of English commodes, the highlight of its outstanding furniture collection and part of the much larger collection originally formed by William Lever, lst Viscount Leverhulme (1851-1925). This group of over 40 commodes includes some of the greatest achievements of 18th-century London cabinet-making and is a tribute to Lever's passionate commitment to British art. This catalogue is the result of extensive and wide-ranging research by Lucy Wood, Curator of the Lady Lever Art Gallery. Alongside the physical descriptions of the pieces in the collection, which incorporate detailed analyses of construction, she discusses the documentary evidence - in household accounts, inventories, bank records, sale catalogues - for the provenance and authorship of many of the most distinguished commodes. She also makes stylistic and constructional comparisons with related furniture elsewhere. Several coherent groupings have been identified, in some cases resulting in new attributions not only for the commodes in the Lady Lever Art Gallery but also for important objects in other public and private collections.

An introductory essay discusses the stylistic and functional development of the English commode in the 18th century, as well as the 19th-century background to Lever's enthusiasm for these pieces.

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