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Displaying items by tag: Marie Antoinette

On July 9, Christie’s London will continue its tradition of French decorative arts sales with a “Taste of the Royal Court: Important French Furniture and Works of Art From A Private Collection.”

The sale comprises 22 lots of 18th century French decorative arts including an exquisite armchair made for Queen Marie Antoinette (estimate £300,000-500,000) and an extremely rare bureau plat by Charles Cressent (estimate £1-1.5million). The sale is expected to bring in over £6 million ($9.24 million).

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On view through January 27, 2013 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, Extravagant Inventions: The Princely Furniture of the Roentgen’s is the first comprehensive exhibition to focus on the Roentgen family’s cabinetmaking firm, which operated from 1742 into the early 1800s. Extravagant Inventions presents around sixty pieces of furniture, many of which have never been seen outside of Europe.

Abraham Roentgen (1711-1793) and his son David (1743-1807) were pioneering figures in 18th century Continental furnituremaking. Based in Germany, the Roentgen firm’s style is characterized by opulence, inventiveness (they often incorporated hidden compartments and secret drawers into their works), and ornate, finely carved shapes. The Roentgens served clients around Europe including France’s Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette and Russia’s Catherine the Great.  

Extravagant Inventions brings together works from various international collections as well as six works from the Met’s own holdings. Highlights include a writing desk (circa 1758-1762) designed by Abraham Roentgen and considered one of the greatest creations from his workshop, a mechanical secretary cabinet (1779) made for King Friedrich Wilhelm II of Prussia, and a pair of marquetry portraits (1775-1780) depicting a man and a woman, which exemplifies the marquetry technique the Roentgens were renowned for.

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When Marie-Antoinette meets Vivienne Westwood...  Le XVIII au gout du jour is an extravagant exhibition held in the apartments of The Grand Trianon in Versailles, and dedicated to the influence of the 18th century on modern fashion. Fifty models by great designers of the 20th century dialogue with costumes and accessories from the 18th century.

French culture of the 18th century was embodied by Marie-Antoinette, Madame de Pompadour and Madame Du Barry -- paragons of frivolity that have always fascinated the movie industry, writers and the fashion world. With its huge powdered wigs, hoop petticoats, corsets, embroidered vests... This extravagant style has influenced many designers of the 20th century.

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