Not currently on display at the V&A

Chair

1872-1875 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

Alfred Waterhouse provided designs for the furnishings of Blackmoor House, Hampshire, which he had built for Roundell Palmer, 1st Earl of Selborne. The design of this chair is based upon early medieval prototypes. In its ebonised finish and turned decoration, it illustrates the influence of the Art Movement of the 1870s, in particular Norman Shaw's 'Old English' style. The chair would have fitted well into the largely Gothic interiors of the house.

Lord Selborne started professional life as a lawyer. He was made a peer in 1861. It is possible that he chose to build and furnish Blackmoor House in a neo-medieval style to suggest a long-established family history.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Ebonised wood, with modern leather upholstery
Brief Description
Chair, des. Alfred Waterhouse, man. Henry Capel, 1872-5
Physical Description
Ebonised wood chair, the turned legs enclosing a gallery of turned spindles, the back stiles turned also and the upper section framing a geometric arrangement of ring-turned elements. The seat and the lower panel of the back upholstered in leather (replaced).
Dimensions
  • Height: 94.8cm
  • Width: 48.5cm
  • Depth: 46cm
Gallery Label
Waterhouse provided designs for the furnishings of Blackmoor House, Hampshire, which he had built for the 1st Earl of Selbourne. Several other pieces from this house, which was the first major country house commission by Waterhouse, are shown nearby. The design is based upon early mediaeval prototypes and illustrates the influence of the Art Movement of the 1870s in it ebonised finish and turned decoration.(1993)
Object history
Waterhouse designed this chair for Blackmoor House, Hampshire, which was also designed by him. His client was Sir Roundell Palmer (1812-1895), created Earl of Selbourne in 1882, a lawyer who became Solicitor-General 1861-3 and Lord Chancellor, 1872-4 and 1880-5. Palmer bought the estate at Blackmoor in 1865. The furniture was supplied by the firm of Henry Capel, 26 Great Titchfield Street, London.
Historical context
Apparently no drawings for the Blackmoor furniture survive (Colin Cunningham and Prudence Waterhouse, Alfred Waterhouse 1830-1905, 1992, p. 174n).



Henry Capel supplied much of the furniture at Blackmoor and for other Waterhouse commissions, including Eaton Hall, Balliol College, Oxford, and in Cambridge, Jesus and Pembroke Colleges. His show card for his Art Furniture illustrates a chair of similar design, with an upholstered back and seat, spindle decoration below the front seat rail and geometric turned decoration below the back rail (WID 29637.138).
Summary
Alfred Waterhouse provided designs for the furnishings of Blackmoor House, Hampshire, which he had built for Roundell Palmer, 1st Earl of Selborne. The design of this chair is based upon early medieval prototypes. In its ebonised finish and turned decoration, it illustrates the influence of the Art Movement of the 1870s, in particular Norman Shaw's 'Old English' style. The chair would have fitted well into the largely Gothic interiors of the house.



Lord Selborne started professional life as a lawyer. He was made a peer in 1861. It is possible that he chose to build and furnish Blackmoor House in a neo-medieval style to suggest a long-established family history.
Collection
Accession Number
W.42-1975

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record createdMarch 10, 2000
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