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White Leather Chair

October 23rd, 2007

Daniel Pontius

Last Sunday, I was wandering around the little antique mall on Cedros in Solana Beach drinking a cup of coffee. Milling through furniture, artworks, and brick-a-brack is really one of my favorite things to do. It’s even more fun for me then walking through an antique gallery where you will know you will see something beautiful like a Fornasetti screen or a James Mont table.
This chair, I don’t think, is a particularly fine piece of furniture, but it could create a certain wonderful atmosphere that I would like, and I have been thinking about Madame Castaing and as Zarah Crawford in the NY Times wrote she preferred poetry to perfection.
This chair: petite and low to the ground–perhaps for a vanity– functional so that a lady could sit and look into a table mirror to put on her make up. Neoclasicalesque rosettes at the arms and then the sides reminescent of a wing back chair along with the brass nail heads. White leather and semi-attached cushion with buttons. The legs are a bit chunky and stretchers could be a bit more delicate. The whimsy of the cushion as if it is perched on the seat making it work along with the slightly bowed out arms to shape the curves of the lady’s body.
I have been thinking about Madame Castaing; because having recently gotten a bike helmet for the first time, I am reminded everytime I put it on of her elastic band that went under her chin to hold on her wig and performed a tightening that some people get from face lifts. Looking at this chair in the antiques booth I picked up the Tashen book, Interiors Paris, opening it up to Madame’s apartment. I first saw it in a book, Rooms, photographs taken by Derry Moore.

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