Tag Archives: Carlton Hobbs

A In-Depth Look At Viollet-le-Duc’s Work for Nôtre Dame de Paris, And The Aubusson Carpet Made to His Design

Over the summer we brought you preliminary details on an important Aubusson carpet made to a design by Eugene Viollet-le-Duc for the Cathedral of Nôtre Dame de Paris in our collection. We are now very pleased to present the complete research for the carpet, which is currently on show in our booth at TEFAF Maastricht, Booth #271:

The design of the present carpet was the work of Eugène Viollet-le-Duc (1814-1879) for the sanctuary of Notre Dame de Paris in the 1860s.

Eugene Viollet-Le-Duc designed this important aubusson carpet for The cathedral of nôtre Dame de Paris

Carlton Hobbs LLC, at TEFAF, exhibited this important aubusson carpet with islamic imagery, designed by Eugene Viollet-Le-Duc designed for The cathedral of nôtre Dame de Paris

For Carlton Hobbs, a torchère lights up an episode of Downton Abbey

While watching the season finale of PBS Masterpiece’s “Downton Abbey” last weekend, Carlton Hobbs staff member Dana noticed something curiously familiar in the background of one scene:

Scene from “Downton Abbey”

A porcelain-mounted torchère very much like the pair by Louis-François Bellangé in the Carlton Hobbs collection!

A pair of amaranth, gilt bronze and porcelain torcheres by Bellange, acquired directly by G.W. Taylor. Circa 1820

Carlton Hobbs LLC, the Erlestroke torcheres by Bellange, circa 1820

For those not familiar, Downton Abbey is a British period drama about a fictional aristocratic family and their country house in England in the early 1900s. The house used for Downton Abbey on the show is actually  Highclere Castle in Hampshire. Various other filming locations are used, and in this particular episode the family visits relatives at a Scottish hunting lodge, with many of the interior and exterior scenes shot at Inveraray Castle in Scotland.

It’s Tôle For Thee…

PAIR OF 18th Century English TôLE CENTer TABLES

CENTer TABLES, made of Tole Painte and lacquer, which were originally part of the Colonial Williamsburg museum collection

This rare pair of tables is a striking example of Pontypool lacquered tôle, one the eighteenth century’s most innovative decorative techniques. A closely comparable table in the collection at Colonial Williamsburg, dated to 1765 and with a rectangular top (figure 1), shares the same hand-punched pierced edging and eared corners of the present pair and is decorated with fruit and flowers in a style and composition closely related to that of these pieces. In addition, both the present pair and the Williamsburg table are raised on a lacquered baluster stem with three cabriole legs with pad feet.

Mirror, mirror…on the chair?

The rococo style appeared in Italy later than in its neighboring European countries, and was highly influenced by French Louis XV design. In Venice, the republic had faded politically and commercially, however, it “excelled as the capital of taste, fashion and luxury, rivaling the reputation of Paris.” The rooms of the grand palazzi on the canals were outfitted with colorful frescoes, marble floors and sumptuous textiles. The interior architecture, of a sculptural quality, was reflected in the furnishings, which were brightly painted and elaborately carved.



I Vagabondi

Four polychrome painted sculptures of beggars, in wood, produced in Val Gardena, Italy

An interesting Group of four polychrome decorated carved wooden figures of Vagabonds, 17th or 18th century.

The first known examples of carved depictions of vagabonds and beggars date back to the second half of the 18th century and are specific to Val Gardena, also referred to by its German name, Gröden, a valley in the Dolomite mountain range of northern Italy. This town was well known for it’s cottage industry of wooden carving in which toys, utility articles and sculpture were made since the 17th century, and the present set of figures are most likely attributable to this region.

Time is Precious

These candelabra, which take the very interesting and uncommon form of human skeletons, belong to the genre in art specifically devoted to reminding us of our own mortality. “Memento Mori,” from the Latin “Remember you will die,” is a theme found in painting, sculpture and architecture, which reflects upon the transience of life and ephemeral nature of our earthly possessions. The most popular symbols found in these works are skeletons or skulls. Extinguished candles, urns of flowers and timepieces, such as clocks and hourglasses, are also present as reminders of our fleeting existence in this world.

A Restorer’s Legacy

Here is a look at a new acquisition with quite an interesting provenance.

Pair of painted and gilded reductions from the Banqueting room at Brighton's Royal Pavilion

Carlton Hobbs Collection: An extremely fine pair of painted and gilded reductions on panel from the Banqueting room of the Royal pavilion, brighton, by Wilfred Frost

This pair of panels is comprised of early-20th century miniature versions of two of the chinoiserie canvas panels which line the walls of the Banqueting Room at The Royal Pavilion, Brighton. The original panels were designed by Robert Jones and supplied to the Banqueting Room in circa 1817-1821:


Pained panel by Robert Jones in situ in the Banqueting Room at the Royal Pavilion.

A Magnificent Carpet Ride!

We are excited to bring you another discovery we recently made:

We have a large carpet in our collection (measuring 20′ x 15′) decorated with a profusion of stylized foliate tendrils and acanthus leaves, centered by an Islamic-style temple. Carlton’s hunch that it’s design resembled the work of Eugène Viollet le Duc (1814-1879) led us to contact Professor Martin Bressani, the leading authority on Viollet-le-Duc, who commented that the carpet looked to be his work “to the degree that it is hard to imagine anyone else having designed it”, and that the distinctive floral motif, was one of Viollet-le-Duc’s trademarks.

Happy Holidays from Carlton Hobbs!

Oil on canvase. Black artist with portrait of a white female sitter, Possibly Brazilian. First half of the eighteenth century.

Black artist Completing a portrait of a white female aristocrat, Possibly Brazilian School. First half of the eighteenth century.

To learn more about this painting (and see the true version) visit our website.

Black Artist Completing A Portrait of A White Female Aristocrat

Possibly Brazilian School. First half of the eighteenth century.

Oil on canvas.

Early 18th century oil on canvas painting depicting a black artist completeing a portrait of a white aristocrat, possibly Brazilian School

Carlton Hobbs LLC, a painting of a black artist completing a portrait of a white female aristocrat

Height: 41″ (104 cm); Width: 32 1/2″ (81.5 cm). 9897