Antique Colonial Revival Furniture
Antique Colonial Revival furniture is original furniture in a style that was prevalent in the United States in the late-nineteenth century.
History & Description
Following the United States’ First Centennial, there was a revisiting of Colonial themes infused with Victorian and Neoclassical fashion sensibilities. Colonial Revival furniture was often simply constructed without the desire for embellishment or decoration.
In short, Colonial Revival furniture was a homage to the austere and plain styles that were predominant during the United States’ time as a British colony.
The Colonial Revival movement was inspired by the country’s rapid industrialisation, increasing immigration and was seen as a national expression of early North American culture.
Guide for collectors
Although the Colonial Revival movement reached its peak between 1870 and 1930, it is still popular in the United States, particularly among decorative arts and furniture collectors. Instances of antique Colonial Revival furniture sold at national and international auctioneers are quite common. However, prices can vary considerably.
The most valuable and sought after examples of antique Colonial Revival furniture are those that were produced by the leading American furniture designers of the late-nineteenth century, such as Thomas Chippendale and Ernest Hagen.
Moreover, furniture constructed from mahogany is typically more expensive than those made of maple or birch.
Notable auction sales
On May 22nd 2010 at Cowan’s Auctions in Cincinnati, Ohio, a pair of Colonial Revival armchairs, attributed to Ernest Hagen, circa 1880-1910, realised a price of $12,000.
On January 25th 2010 at Christie’s in New York, a pair of Colonial Revival 14kt gold candlesticks, made by Gorham Mfg. Co., circa 1911, realised a price of $5,625.
On October 3rd 2006 at Christie’s in New York, a Colonial Revival mahogany corner chair, circa late-nineteenth century, realised a price of $2,640.
On September 25th 1991 at Christie’s in London, a Colonial Revival mahogany highboy, made by Chippendale, realised a price of £1,320.
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