Purchase French Antiques

Who is Paul Sormani?

Paul Sormani…probably one of the most celebrated cabinet makers in France who wasn’t even French. In fact, Paul Sormani was Italian.

Paul Sormani (1817 – 1877) was a preeminent 19th Century Italian cabinetmaker (ébéniste) of the Lombard-Venetian origin.

Sormani moved to Paris and established his workshop there in 1847 and soon began producing high quality items of standard and ‘fantasy’ furniture, which he described as meubles de luxe (‘luxury furniture’). He specialised in reproducing Louis XV and XVI style pieces, which proved immensely popular with discerning European aristocracy. The Empress Eugenie, for example, who was wife of Emperor Napoleon III, chose to decorate her palaces with Sormani’s beautiful furniture.

 

Empress Eugenie, Wife of Napoleon III

Sormani frequently exhibited his impressive creations and was awarded prizes at all the major international exhibitions of the 1860s and 1870s. Notably, at the Parisian Exposition Universelle in 1867, judges described Sormani’s work as revealing “a quality of execution of the first order”.

On the Champs des Mars, stood the 1867 Exposition featuring all the latest technology of the era. Even the new ‘elevator’ was on display

 

A superior Paul Sormani Commode with Rouge de Rance marble and a coromandel Japanned front.

A superior writing desk by Paul Sormani, early 20th Century.

Once in a while, I discover hidden gems by dealers in France who don’t go the extra mile to find out exactly what they have. In the case of the small lady’s writing desk, (which I bought outside of Paris) the dealer had no desire to unlock the desk. He simply stated there’s no key and sold it to me accordingly.

Our Paul Sormani ladies writing desk C.1880’s.

Our little desk may not have all the gilt and glamor of some of Sormani’s pieces, but it isn’t priced accordingly either. If you’d like to have this lovely piece of cabinetmaking history, please contact the store.

Mark

 

 

Antiques and Interiors for 2018

According to some of the top designers in the world Antiques are becoming more popular than ever before.  There’s been a resurgence in the so called ‘brown furniture’ meaning such styles as Victorian, Georgian, as well as the classic French styles.

Why, because people are becoming a little bored with the overabundance of mass produced rubbish that not only disposable but detrimental to the environment.

Designers are anchoring modern looks with a fabulous antique to give the look charm and focus that might otherwise be lost in a monochromatic design.

According to Mark Hill from Designcurial in London

‘The only rule for 2018 is that all rules are off,” reckons Mark Hill, fellow author and another expert on the BBC’s Antiques Roadshow. “We buy antiques today because they appeal immediately to our eyes and hearts, and then they enrich our minds.  Before, interiors were strictly defined – from the Georgian dining room to the ubiquitous ‘shabby chic’ French country look.”

What exactly does this mean for interior design? “Eclecticism,” Mark argues, “is the new minimalism – mixing and matching seemingly disparate pieces together to build a unique and individual look that defines you. Quirky is cool.  1970s Italian goblets on a sideboard from the 1790s?   A collection of Victorian transfer-printed and guilt plates arranged asymmetrically on a stark chalk-white wall?  Why not?”

Antique Warehouse carries an extensive collection of french, england and belgium antiques and ships to the USA and worldwide.  Visit our website for a full list of our current french antique inventory.

Mark Hill, Antique and Collectable Expert, formerly of Sotheby’s and Bonhams.

Then again, he does see some trends coming through in 2018 in this new world where there are ‘no rules’. “Bold forms, or richness in terms of colour and pattern, layered against a strong colour, are on trend.  Also, watch out for the return of what is inadequately descried as ‘brown furniture’.  I’m seeing more and more buyers returning to Georgian, Victorian and Edwardian furniture”.

“There’s also a rise in interest in pieces that show the hand of the craftsman,” he continues, giving the examples of a “sparkling cut glass vase, or a wonderfully weathered piece of folk art.  Our eyes have been assailed for too long with mass-produced, machine-made rubbish lacking in soul!”

We couldn’t agree more. We’ve seen a rise in popularity that’s increasing globally. In fact, it’s more difficult then ever to source great pieces at formerly reasonable prices.

Here at the Antique Warehouse we’re shipping more and more to the four corners of the world than ever before.

Antique Warehouse carries an extensive collection of french, england and belgium antiques and ships to the USA and worldwide.  Visit our website for a full list of our current french antique inventory.

Old Georgian Home Wood World Globes Study Antique

But this new trend is hardly new from where we stand.  We’ve seen this going on here at the Antique Warehouse for the past few years. Good stand alone pieces with quality and substance are always in demand. We curate our collection carefully based on this.

Thanks for reading.

Mark LaFleur

http://www.antiquewarehouse.ca

 

 

 

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