The Hepplewhite style bears the name of its creator, George Hepplewhite. It was considered an elegant and trendy furniture style.
Who was George Heppelwhite?
George Hepplewhite was an English cabinetmaker and furniture designer whose name is associated with Neoclassicism. Not so much is known about Hepplewhite himself. After he died in 1786, his shop went on thanks to his widow, Alice. In 1788 she published a book featuring about 300 projects, “The Cabinet Maker and Upholsterers Guide”. The book will influence cabinet makers for several years.
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The carving was important in his designs. He preferred satinwood and sycamore for unusual veneering. On his satinwood panels, there are decorative paintings of Angelica Kauffman, Michael Angelo Pergolesi, and other Italian artists. Sideboards and desks were decorated with carved details employed with chaste restraint.
Characteristics of this Style
The furniture designed by Hepplewhite was a deep rethinking of the neoclassical model. He gave a beginning to a new way of conceiving furniture. Recurrent characteristics are:
- shield-shaped chair back and delicate carving;
- upholstered seats;
- straight, tapered legs;
- a gorgeous mix of classical-inspired and authentic ancient motifs;
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