The sinuous fretwork in the back of this chair caused a sensation when it was exhibited in 1885. It is now seen as an early precursor of Art Nouveau. Only five of these chairs are known to exist; two in the collection of the William Morris Gallery, one in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, one in the Virginia Museum of Fine Art, Richmond, and the fifth copy is shared between the Huntingdon Library and Los Angeles County Museum of Art.


  • Title: Fretwork chair
  • Creator: Century Guild, Arthur Heygate Mackmurdo, Collinson & Lock
  • Date Created: c.1882
  • Location Created: London, England
  • Type: furniture
  • Rights: © William Morris Gallery, London Borough of Waltham Forest
  • Physical Dimensions: 96.5 x 48.3 x 49.5 cm
  • Object Number: G36b
  • Medium: mahogany, leather and brass
  • Credit line: WMG purchase, 1966

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