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Chair and Footstool
India, 1845-1855
The Royal Collection
"This spectacular throne, the centrepiece of the Indian section in the Great Exhibition, was presented to Queen Victoria in part to advertise the carving skills of Travancore in southern India. The densely-carved elephant-ivory plaques incorporate Indian and European motifs, and the conch-shell emblem of Travancore forms the cresting." View high resolution

Chair and Footstool

India, 1845-1855

The Royal Collection

"This spectacular throne, the centrepiece of the Indian section in the Great Exhibition, was presented to Queen Victoria in part to advertise the carving skills of Travancore in southern India. The densely-carved elephant-ivory plaques incorporate Indian and European motifs, and the conch-shell emblem of Travancore forms the cresting."

Funerary Chair
Colombia, 1-700 AD
Museo del Oro

Funerary Chair

Colombia, 1-700 AD

Museo del Oro

The Elgin Throne
Greece, 400-300 BC
The J. Paul Getty Museum
"A rare surviving example of Greek marble furniture, the Elgin Throneoriginally was placed in a public space in Athens, perhaps in the Theater of Dionysos, where it would have been a seat of honor. The decoration on the sides of the chair appears connected with this official function. 
 The two complementary figural scenes depict tales of Athens’ liberation, one historical and one mythological. In 514 B.C., Harmodios and Aristogeiton, during a failed attempt to assassinate the tyrant Hippias, killed Hippias’ brother Hipparchos, thus initiating the development of democracy in Athens. The image of the tyrannicides or tyrant slayers on the throne reproduces a famous statue of the pair that once stood in the Athenian Agora and is now known from Roman copies. The other scene on the throne most likely depicts the Athenian hero Theseus battling an Amazon during a legendary invasion of the city. Amazons were often shown in Greek art, as on the Parthenon, to represent barbarian invasions of civilized Greek territories.  A partial inscription running along the upper edge of the back of the throne names Boethos, perhaps the dedicator of the throne. The throne was once in the collection of Lord Elgin, a noted collector of antiquities. “

The Elgin Throne

Greece, 400-300 BC

The J. Paul Getty Museum

"A rare surviving example of Greek marble furniture, the Elgin Throneoriginally was placed in a public space in Athens, perhaps in the Theater of Dionysos, where it would have been a seat of honor. The decoration on the sides of the chair appears connected with this official function. 


The two complementary figural scenes depict tales of Athens’ liberation, one historical and one mythological. In 514 B.C., Harmodios and Aristogeiton, during a failed attempt to assassinate the tyrant Hippias, killed Hippias’ brother Hipparchos, thus initiating the development of democracy in Athens. The image of the tyrannicides or tyrant slayers on the throne reproduces a famous statue of the pair that once stood in the Athenian Agora and is now known from Roman copies. The other scene on the throne most likely depicts the Athenian hero Theseus battling an Amazon during a legendary invasion of the city. Amazons were often shown in Greek art, as on the Parthenon, to represent barbarian invasions of civilized Greek territories.

A partial inscription running along the upper edge of the back of the throne names Boethos, perhaps the dedicator of the throne. The throne was once in the collection of Lord Elgin, a noted collector of antiquities. “

Chair (Ngundja)
Chokwe, 19th-20th century
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
In many societies of Central Africa, such as the Chokwe and related peoples like the Songo and the Ovimbundu, functional artifacts are transformed into prestige objects that commemorate the power and status of the chief. Chokwe chiefs possess many elaborately carved articles, including ceremonial weapons, staffs of office, tobacco pipes, and seats of office like this example in the Museum’s collection.
Over the course of numerous encounters with European traders as early as the seventeenth century, Chokwe chiefs appropriated the design of certain types of Western artifacts. The seats of office, or “thrones,” of Chokwe chiefs, with backs, leather-covered seats, and decorative brass tacks, are modeled upon European chairs. The decoration of the chair, however, remains distinctly Chokwe in style. The elaborate figurative scenes depicted on this and other seats of office are designed as symbolic microcosms of life and represent the breadth of a leader’s concerns and responsibilities. The back uprights contain scenes from the spiritual aspect of life, including depictions of ancestors or chiefs. The dance figures along the bottom and the masked figures along the second rung refer to Chokwe initiation rites. The conical masks, known as cikunza, promote fertility and are used during the circumcision rituals of Chokwe adolescents. The topmost rung features two ngungu birds. The ngungu bird is the largest bird known to the Chokwe and is associated with hunting—a vocation with which Chokwe leaders closely identify. It is also a good omen, a sign of success in the hunt and therefore a sign of power. In addition, the ngungu serves as a mediator between the spiritual and earthly realms, and is often displayed with other symbols of chiefly power.
The rows of figures along the stretchers at the base of the chair are carved representations of scenes from everyday life. Images of hunting or trading are common, as illustrated on the front and back rungs, which feature men tending to cattle. In this piece, domestic activities like food preparation are depicted on the side rungs. The proper left rung features women tending to their children and pounding grain, while the proper right rung depicts men at work. These quotidian scenes are universally identifiable to the king’s constituency and serve as a juxtaposition to the ritual events depicted at the summit of the chair. The overall organization of these scenes creates a united visual narrative emphasizing the social harmony and continuity that is ultimately achieved through following the enlightened leadership of the chair’s owner, namely, the chief.
The Chokwe kingdom rose to power during the late nineteenth century in the broad expanse of open savanna in the southern region of the Democratic Republic of Congo and northern Angola. As the Chokwe population expanded, they eventually conquered the previously dominant Lunda empire, which declined after the abolition of the slave trade in the 1830s. The Chokwe peoples thrived primarily because of the profitable trade of ivory, wax, and rubber with the Portuguese. Chokwe chairs are among the few African objects not carved from a single piece of wood, but are instead assembled in parts.” View high resolution

Chair (Ngundja)

Chokwe, 19th-20th century

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

In many societies of Central Africa, such as the Chokwe and related peoples like the Songo and the Ovimbundu, functional artifacts are transformed into prestige objects that commemorate the power and status of the chief. Chokwe chiefs possess many elaborately carved articles, including ceremonial weapons, staffs of office, tobacco pipes, and seats of office like this example in the Museum’s collection.

Over the course of numerous encounters with European traders as early as the seventeenth century, Chokwe chiefs appropriated the design of certain types of Western artifacts. The seats of office, or “thrones,” of Chokwe chiefs, with backs, leather-covered seats, and decorative brass tacks, are modeled upon European chairs. The decoration of the chair, however, remains distinctly Chokwe in style. The elaborate figurative scenes depicted on this and other seats of office are designed as symbolic microcosms of life and represent the breadth of a leader’s concerns and responsibilities. The back uprights contain scenes from the spiritual aspect of life, including depictions of ancestors or chiefs. The dance figures along the bottom and the masked figures along the second rung refer to Chokwe initiation rites. The conical masks, known as cikunza, promote fertility and are used during the circumcision rituals of Chokwe adolescents. The topmost rung features two ngungu birds. The ngungu bird is the largest bird known to the Chokwe and is associated with hunting—a vocation with which Chokwe leaders closely identify. It is also a good omen, a sign of success in the hunt and therefore a sign of power. In addition, the ngungu serves as a mediator between the spiritual and earthly realms, and is often displayed with other symbols of chiefly power.

The rows of figures along the stretchers at the base of the chair are carved representations of scenes from everyday life. Images of hunting or trading are common, as illustrated on the front and back rungs, which feature men tending to cattle. In this piece, domestic activities like food preparation are depicted on the side rungs. The proper left rung features women tending to their children and pounding grain, while the proper right rung depicts men at work. These quotidian scenes are universally identifiable to the king’s constituency and serve as a juxtaposition to the ritual events depicted at the summit of the chair. The overall organization of these scenes creates a united visual narrative emphasizing the social harmony and continuity that is ultimately achieved through following the enlightened leadership of the chair’s owner, namely, the chief.

The Chokwe kingdom rose to power during the late nineteenth century in the broad expanse of open savanna in the southern region of the Democratic Republic of Congo and northern Angola. As the Chokwe population expanded, they eventually conquered the previously dominant Lunda empire, which declined after the abolition of the slave trade in the 1830s. The Chokwe peoples thrived primarily because of the profitable trade of ivory, wax, and rubber with the Portuguese. Chokwe chairs are among the few African objects not carved from a single piece of wood, but are instead assembled in parts.”

The Juxon Chair
England, 1661
The Victoria & Albert Museum
"This seat, with its distinctive ‘x’ frame, is known as a chair of state. It was used in ceremonies by monarchs and other leading participants. It was accompanied by a footstool, to emphasize its importance.
This chair of state was made in 1661 with a stool by John Casbert (active 1660-1676), the royal upholsterer. It was to be used by William Juxon, Archbishop of Canterbury (1582-1663), during the coronation of Charles II (ruled 1660-1685). Both the chair and the stool remained in the possession of Juxon’s descendants until 1794, when they were sold.
Both the chair of state and its footstool have long been associated with the trial and execution of Charles I (reigned 1625-1649). Juxon (then Bishop of London) attended the King in his final days. A number of romantic stories therefore became attached to them. These include the fanciful claims, reported in The Gentleman’s Magazine of June 1794, that Charles I knelt on the stool when he was beheaded and that there were still drops of blood on the upholstery. Recent research has proved, however, that both chair and stool were made for the Coronation of his son, Charles II, in 1661.
The chair has a frame of beech. It is upholstered with purple velvet and greenish-blue satin, and decorated with a fringe of gold wire, silver-gilt wire and gold-coloured cotton, tacked on with iron nails with ornamental gilt heads. The stuffing is held in place by webbing, a series of criss-cross straps, of hemp.
The chair originally stood in Westminster Abbey, London, during the coronation of Charles II, on 23 April 1661. It was moved to Little Compton, Warwickshire, where it remained until the house sale that followed the death of Juxon’s descendant, Viscountess Fane, in 1794. It was bought by a Mr Sands, whose descendant, Dr Sands Cox, bequeathed it to the Cottage Hospital in Moreton-on-Marsh, Gloucestershire, at an unknown date.”

The Juxon Chair

England, 1661

The Victoria & Albert Museum

"This seat, with its distinctive ‘x’ frame, is known as a chair of state. It was used in ceremonies by monarchs and other leading participants. It was accompanied by a footstool, to emphasize its importance.

This chair of state was made in 1661 with a stool by John Casbert (active 1660-1676), the royal upholsterer. It was to be used by William Juxon, Archbishop of Canterbury (1582-1663), during the coronation of Charles II (ruled 1660-1685). Both the chair and the stool remained in the possession of Juxon’s descendants until 1794, when they were sold.

Both the chair of state and its footstool have long been associated with the trial and execution of Charles I (reigned 1625-1649). Juxon (then Bishop of London) attended the King in his final days. A number of romantic stories therefore became attached to them. These include the fanciful claims, reported in The Gentleman’s Magazine of June 1794, that Charles I knelt on the stool when he was beheaded and that there were still drops of blood on the upholstery. Recent research has proved, however, that both chair and stool were made for the Coronation of his son, Charles II, in 1661.

The chair has a frame of beech. It is upholstered with purple velvet and greenish-blue satin, and decorated with a fringe of gold wire, silver-gilt wire and gold-coloured cotton, tacked on with iron nails with ornamental gilt heads. The stuffing is held in place by webbing, a series of criss-cross straps, of hemp.

The chair originally stood in Westminster Abbey, London, during the coronation of Charles II, on 23 April 1661. It was moved to Little Compton, Warwickshire, where it remained until the house sale that followed the death of Juxon’s descendant, Viscountess Fane, in 1794. It was bought by a Mr Sands, whose descendant, Dr Sands Cox, bequeathed it to the Cottage Hospital in Moreton-on-Marsh, Gloucestershire, at an unknown date.”

Chair
Russia, early 20th century
The Hermitage Museum

Chair

Russia, early 20th century

The Hermitage Museum

cwnerd12:

today’s lulz courtesy of Google Translate.
This is my life.
View high resolution

cwnerd12:

today’s lulz courtesy of Google Translate.

This is my life.

Funerary Sculpture of a Dog
China (Sichuan), 25-220 AD
The Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Funerary Sculpture of a Dog

China (Sichuan), 25-220 AD

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Daguerreotype
America, 1855
The Metropolitan Museum of Art View high resolution

Daguerreotype

America, 1855

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Vessel in the Shape of a Dog
Nasca, 200 BC- 600 AD
The British Museum View high resolution

Vessel in the Shape of a Dog

Nasca, 200 BC- 600 AD

The British Museum

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