Suite of Dutch White Painted Louis XVI Chairs

10070 A suite of Dutch white painted late Louis XVI chairs comprising four side chairs and an arm chair, the fluted column backs with an arcaded balustrade top rail, the balustrade repeated to the seat rails and standing on tapering, fluted legs on toupie feet. Original grey/blue paint decoration underneath later painted scheme. Unrestored condition and requiring recovering.

Willem Kops House, Haarlem, Amsterdam 1793-5

1st Lord Tweedmouth(1820-1894) , Brook House

Sir Wyndham Knatchbull 1844-1917), Mersham le Hatch





Side chair height: 34.5 ins (87.5 cms)

Width: 17.5 ins (44.5 cms)

Depth: 16 ins (41 cms)

Arm chair height: 37 ins (94 cms)

Width: 24 ins (61 cms)

Depth: 21 ins (53.5 cms)

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A suite of 8 identical side chairs with this very unusual balustrade detail to the seat rails and retaining remains of their original silk upholstery are in Centraal Museum, Utrecht. The suite was commissioned circa 1793 for the merchant and art collector Willem Kops in classical Louis XVI style for his Haarlem townhouse. The entire decorative interior of the salon from this remarkable house designed by Abraham van der Hart has been saved and installed in the Rijksmuseum complete with a similar suite of painted chairs.

An identical armchair is in the reserve collection of The Rijksmuseum and another formerly Hubert de Givenchy collection, sold Christies, Hubert de Givenchy-Collectionneur 17 June 2022, Lot 796.

The exact size of this suite is undocumented but the existence of three armchairs and  twelve side chairs indicates a set of at least 16

Although the quality and construction of these chairs initially seems to be French, the detailing and timber indicates an Amsterdam workshop under the considerable influence of a French emigre craftsman. No bills survive for the Kops house but the French born cabinetmaker and tapissier Josesph Cuel is known to have worked for van der Hart on an adjacent townhouse in Haarlem and is possibly the supplier of this important suite.

For a detailed study of this little known subject and specifically French upholsterers in Amsterdam, see Reinier Baarsen. FHS journal vol XXI 1985

Many thanks to my Dutch friends for enlightening and sharing this information with me!

Suite of Dutch White Painted Louis XVI Chairs