Cabinet (for the artist's office at the Castel Béranger, Paris) (Primary Title)

Hector Guimard, French, 1867 - 1942 (Artist)
Ateliers d'Art et de Fabrication (Maker)

ca. 1899 (remodeled after 1909)
pear, ash, bronze, mirrored glass, glass
Overall: 117 × 93 1/2 × 19 1/2 in. (297.18 × 237.49 × 49.53 cm)

This monumental cabinet, with its twisting lines and hollowed spaces, was inspired by nature and created for Hector Guimard’s office in the Castel Béranger, an apartment building that he designed and was built in Paris between 1894 and 1898. Judging from the original drawings of the cabinet now in the Musée d’Orsay in Paris, Guimard initially planned an even more elaborate piece of furniture.

Sometime after 1909 when Guimard transferred his office and its furnishings from the Castel Béranger to his newly-constructed house on the Avenue Mozart, this cabinet was remodeled and most likely used there. It is important to remember that the architect conceived this cabinet as part of the overall design of an interior and not as a separate piece of furniture.

Sydney and Frances Lewis Art Nouveau Fund
Vigne, Georges. Hector Guimard: le geste magnifique de l’Art nouveau. Paris: Editions du patrimoine, Centre des monuments nationaux, 2016. Color illus., p. 157.

Shifman, Barry. Arts & Crafts, Art Nouveau, Art Deco: Selections from the Sydney and Frances Lewis Decorative Arts Galleries at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. Richmond, VA: Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, 2015. pp. 82-3;

Paul Greenhalgh, Art Nouveau 1890-1914, Victoria and Albert Museum, 2000, p. 175, fig. 10.13;

Anne B. Barriault with Kay Davidson, Selections from the Virginia Museum of Fine arts, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, , 2007, pp. 278-279;

Noel Riley, ed., The Elements of Design, Free Press, NY, 2003, p. 304, fig. 1;

Philippe Garner, The Encyclopedia of Decorative Arts 1890-1940, Van Nostrand Reinhold Co, NY 1978, p. 58;

Frederick R. Brandt, Late 19th and Early 20th Century Decorative Arts. The Sydney and Frances Lewis Collectin in the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond, 1985, pp.70-71, no. 15;

Philippe Garner, "Art Nouveau Furniture," Discovering Antiques, 1971, p. 1776, no. 74;

Philippe Garner, Twentieth Century Furniture, van Nostrand Reinhold, Co, NY, 1980, p. 21;

Alain Gruber, Art Nouveau, Editions Citadelles,Paris, 1994, p. 333;

Paula Phipps, Mirrors. Reflections of Style, W.W. Norton & Co., NY, 2012, p. 98
Image released via Creative Commons CC-BY-NC

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