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Side Chair

Decorative Arts

The inventor and designer George Hunzinger secured twenty-one furniture patents between 1860 and 1898, more than any other American manufacturer, for a wide array of folding chairs, tables, chaises, and novel structural innovations. He was both a prescient genius of abstract, spare design and a man of his times: the Japanese tatami matting on one of these chairs illustrates the contemporary taste for exoticism, while the Neoclassically inspired, symmetrical back splats on the other acknowledge the taste for historicism.
MEDIUM Wood and textile covered steel webbing
  • Place Manufactured: New York, United States
  • DATES Patented March 30, 1869 and April 18, 1876
    DIMENSIONS 32 x 17 1/2 x 19 1/2 in. (81.3 x 44.5 x 49.5 cm)  (show scale)
    MARKINGS Outer proper left back leg, impressed: "PAT. APRIL 18 1876/N.Y./PAT.MARCH 30/1869/HUNZINGER"
    COLLECTIONS Decorative Arts
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    CREDIT LINE Gift of Ronald S. Kane
    RIGHTS STATEMENT Creative Commons-BY
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    CAPTION George Jacob Hunzinger (American, born Germany, 1835-1898). Side Chair, Patented March 30, 1869 and April 18, 1876. Wood and textile covered steel webbing, 32 x 17 1/2 x 19 1/2 in. (81.3 x 44.5 x 49.5 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Ronald S. Kane, 2005.64. Creative Commons-BY
    IMAGE overall, CUR.2005.64.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2010
    "CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Dark brown stained side chair of turned parts with textile-covered steel mesh seat. Composed of rectangular back of two mirror-image J-shaped elements between two horizontal slats attached to stiles that gently curve backward at crest. Raised atop gently curving rectangular back legs that taper towards base. Diagonal side braces, attached to top of crest rail, back of side seat rails, and terminate with small sphere at join with horizontal half-stretcher that connects to midpoint of front legs. Stretcher at midpoint of front legs and upper back legs. Seat is woven into open-work square pattern wrapped around brads to inside of seat rails.
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