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A history of furniture. John Morely documents the aesthetics of furniture, its social and cultural context, the sequence of styles - from Ancient Egyptian, Greek and Roman through Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and onwards - and the individual touches of craftsmen or designers used to give it character. The story is shaped by the conflict between "Classical" and "anti-Classical", order and fantasy, and includes exotic styles from China and Japan, India and Africa. Furniture finds a huge variety of forms, depending on comfort and convenience but also changing fashions in interiors, as well as the influence of politics, religion, architecture and the fine arts. Works by famous designers - Boulle, Chippendale, Riesener, Mackintosh, Eames - appear in the context of the stylistic ideals of their times, and more than 600 illustrations are closely integrated to the text.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780500019481
ISBN-10: 0500019487
Format: Hardback
(305mm x 250mm x mm)
Pages: 352
Imprint: Thames & Hudson Ltd
Publisher: Thames & Hudson Ltd
Publish Date: 8-Nov-1999
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Reviews

UK Kirkus Review » An admirably comprehensive survey of furniture from ancient to modern times. Furniture is one of those commodities that has played a part in all our lives, regardless of whether your taste leans towards the functional or the more elaborate. Furniture has usually fulfilled its basic utilitarian need, but it has also acted as a status symbol for the rich and powerful. The chair, for example, has always reflected a person's rank, with those highest in the pecking order getting the best seat. If a canopy was attached or a footstool used with that chair, it denoted the importance of that person even further. Furniture has also been the subject of artistic fantasy, exemplified in Salvador Dali's pink felt sofa in the shape of Mae West's lips. This book uncovers a wealth of fascinating information about the role furniture has played in social history, as well as systematically examining its chronological development. A worthy, if rather pricey, reference work, generously illustrated and containing some enthralling snippets of information within. (Kirkus UK)


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