An ornate George II polychrome-painted bridal chest, made in the Channel Islands, leads Bonhams Oak Interior sale on 20 September at Bonhams, New Bond Street. The chest is estimated at £30,000-40,000. For more than 15 years, Bonhams has held twice yearly Oak Interior sales, a much-anticipated feature in the auction calendar for Oak aficionados.
This important paint-decorated chest-on-stand is vibrantly adorned with a bold design that first appeared on leather-covered bridal trunks created around c.1690-1760. Almost certainly a dowry chest, the decoration includes symbolic betrothal decoration in the form of carnations and roses. The chest forms an important link between British/European and American furniture traditions, both in terms of their decoration and construction.
Bonhams Senior Specialist in Oak Furniture, David Houlston commented, "The bridal chest is one of at least five recorded related examples made in the same workshop and painted by the same hand. However, this is the only one constructed entirely of oak, the others being principally pine, with ash or oak legs."
Other highlights include:
- An impressive James I oak court cupboard, circa 1615, estimated at £15,000-20,000.
- A rare and highly unusual James I joined oak panel-back open armchair, dated 1626, is estimated at £15,000-20,000.
- A rare George III painted pine and astragal glazed breakfront fully enclosed high dresser from the West Country, circa 1760, carries an estimate of £12,000-18,000.
- An exceptionally rare joined oak and walnut billiard table, English, circa 1700 is expected to achieve £10,000-15,000.