Wisteria Room

Artist: Lucien Lévy-Dhurmer (French, Algiers 1865–1953 Le Vésinet)

Date: 1910–14

Medium: Carved walnut and amaranth

Dimensions: 17 ft. 3 in. x 26 ft. 3 in. (3.71 x 5.26 x 8 m.)

Classification: Woodwork-Architectural

Credit Line: Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1966

Accession Number: 66.244.1-.25


This dining room comes from the Paris apartment of the engineer Auguste Rateau. The project was overseen by Lévy-Dhurmer, a ceramist who turned to painting and decorating. Each room was conceived according to a unified theme, in this case wisteria, a symbol of welcome. Lévy-Dhurmer entrusted the execution of his designs to a number of highly skilled makers. The woodwork and furniture were made by Édouard-Louis Collet, who covered the door and wall panels with perfectly book-matched quartered walnut veneer inlaid with purplish amaranth wood representing clusters of wisteria blossoms. The embossed leather chair upholstery was supplied by M. Leroy-Desrivières. The wool carpet was woven at the centuries-old Manufacture des Gobelins in Paris. The bronze-and-alabaster standing lamps were made by Falize Frères, a renowned Paris firm that produced high-end metalwork and jewelry. The fireplace surround was handworked by the metalsmith Jean Dunand.