Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Sideboard, known as The Pericles Dressoir

Designer:
Bruce J. Talbert (British, Dundee, Scotland 1838–1881 London)
Manufacturer:
Holland & Sons (British, 1843–1942)
Date:
1866
Culture:
British, London
Medium:
Oak, inlaid with ebony, walnut, boxwood, amaranth, carved and gilded; brass fittings
Dimensions:
Overall: 128 × 113 × 30 in. (325.1 × 287 × 76.2 cm)
Classification:
Woodwork-Furniture
Credit Line:
Purchase, Gift of Irwin Untermyer, by exchange; Romano I. Peluso, Ada Peluso, William Lie Zeckendorf, Lila Acheson Wallace, Malcolm Hewitt Wiener Foundation, Carol Grossman, Patricia Wengraf Ltd., Anonymous, Henry Arnhold, Marilyn and Lawrence Friedland, Irene Roosevelt Aitken, Andrew Butterfield and Claire Schiffman, Jason Jacques, Anne Rorimer, and Ian Wardropper and Sarah McNear Gifts, in honor of James David Draper, 2015
Accession Number:
2015.281a, b
Not on view
An ambitious example of British craftsmanship, this so-called Pericles dressoir or sideboard was specifically designed by Talbert as the centerpiece for the stand of Holland & Sons at the Paris International Exhibition of 1867. Talbert, known for his work in the reformed Gothic style, included a scene from Shakespeare’s Pericles, Prince of Tyre in the central gable as well as several quotations from this and two other Shakespeare plays, allusions to dining and the grace before a meal. Both the references to Shakespeare as well as the use of oak, a British native wood, are manifestations of immense national pride.
Inscription: On uppermost section, inlaid within circle on cabinet doors: P (proper right door), 1866 (proper left door).

On upper part of sideboard, carved below the frieze and below the shelf of the gallery: may good digestion wait on appetite / health on both [Macbeth, Act III, scene 4] / mirth become a feast [Pericles, Prince of Tyre, Act II, scene 3 ] / we have all great cause to give great thanks [Coriolanus, Act V, scene 4]
Holland & Sons (1866–at least 1881) ; YMCA, Kingston-on-Thames, Surrey ; Caterham School , Surrey (until 1986; sale, Christie's, King Street, June 2, 1986, lot 261; sold via Haslam and Whiteway for £81,000 to Scott); John Scott , London (1986–2015) ; [ The Fine Art Society , London, 2015; sold for Scott to MMA ]
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