Decorative Arts and Design
On View: Luce Visible Storage and Study Center, 5th Floor
George J. Hunzinger was perhaps the most progressive American furniture designer of the second half of the nineteenth century. He secured twenty-one patents for innovative folding chairs and beds, new structural designs, and the inventive use of old and new materials. This chair was patented in 1869 and includes Hunzinger's diagonal brace, which allowed for some of the first cantilevered chair seats. Amazingly, the chair retains its original upholstery, giving us further insight into Hunzinger's original design conceit.
Wood, original upholstery
designed: 1869; patented: March 30, 1869
35 5/8 x 27 1/4 x 25 1/2 in. (90.5 x 69.2 x 64.8 cm) (show scale)
Impressed on back proper right rear stile: "HUNZINGER / N. Y. / PAT. MARCH. 30 / 1869"
H. Randolph Lever Fund
Armchair; wood, wool, and cord. Turned and incised wooden members. Front legs rise diagonally from lower front; attached to outside rear seat rail, intersect with horizontal arm rail, terminate in outward scrolled finials with six graduated spheres on each finial. Rear stiles flare outward above seat rail to support slightly arched balustrade of turned elements and then continue to meet upper rear stiles. Turned arm rail and arm stile connected by quarter circle member. Turned front stretcher has four baluster elements rising to seat rails with drop finials below. Textile stretched between rear stiles to form back with long fringe and floral swag motif on black ground. Deeply tufted arched seat with rolled front, turned wood cap at front sides of roll. Central panel with multicolored floral motif on black ground oriented front to back.
CONDITION: See conservation Report in file.
George Jacob Hunzinger (American, born Germany, 1835-1898). Armchair, designed: 1869; patented: March 30, 1869. Wood, original upholstery, 35 5/8 x 27 1/4 x 25 1/2 in. (90.5 x 69.2 x 64.8 cm). Brooklyn Museum, H. Randolph Lever Fund, 1992.208. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 1992.208_IMLS_SL2.jpg)
overall, 1992.208_IMLS_SL2.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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