White Rietveld Red Blue Chair record at Christies Amsterdam

White Rietveld Red Blue Chair record at Christies Amsterdam

Photo thanks to Christie’s

Not many people will know (at least I didn’t know) that before Dutch Chair Designer Gerrit Rietveld painted the Red Blue Rietveld Chair red and blue, inspired as he then must have been by Piet Mondriaan, another member of De Stijl Groep (pronounce as:”the Style Group”) he made several mono colored ones.

Today this white lacquered example has been sold at a Christie’s auction in Amsterdam for a record amount of Euro 264,000, while Christie’s estimate was between Euro 50,000 and 80,000. Please do not forget the extras for Christie’s on top of that amount!,

As I find Christie’s lot note very interesting I will quote it here entirely:

The present chair was designed by Gerrit Th. Rietveld as a special commission for Til Brugman in 1923. De Stijl painter Vilmos Huszar restyled the interior of her house in The Hague using the furniture of his fellow De Stijl member Gerrit Rietveld to complement the interior. In the room a multi-colored end table by Gerrit Th. Rietveld was also included, which was sold on the 16th of November 2004 in these rooms.

The first examples of the Red-Blue chair were constructed of unpainted wood. After Rietveld joined De Stijl the first painted examples of the chair were created. It was not until 1923, the same year that this white version for Til Brugman was executed, that the first example with red and blue was completed. The use of primary colors on the Red-Blue chair was probably inspired by Theo van Doesburg and Vilmos Huszár.

Til Brugman was the first Dutch lesbian avant-garde author, who wrote novels and Dadaistic poems. She became acquainted with many of De Stijl artist through her friend Piet Mondriaan. Although her artistic contributions to De Stijl are minimal, behind the scenes her assistance was more substantial; she mediated in the sales of works of art for (amongst others) Piet Mondriaan and translated many articles for the magazine De Stijl. In some of her novels events from her life with members of De Stijl can be discovered.

On contemporary photographs of her interior can be seen how much the interior was modernized by the restyling of Vilmos Huszár. This chair was thought to be lost, but was recovered from the property of a private collector.

Update August 8, 2008:
Christies changed its lay out in the meantime. The chair UK pnd 264,000 (= US $ 355,724).

5 thoughts on “White Rietveld Red Blue Chair record at Christies Amsterdam”

  1. I am trying to contact someone who knows about chair design, to identify a chair I own. I could send photos. It is tubular steel with leather seat and back. No seams or welds visible, and heavier than my Wassily chair. Shows some age wear. If anyone can provide advice on who might assist in identifying it, I would be grateful.
    Thanks, Ross

  2. Hello Ross, thanks for coming by and taking the time to circumvent my not so easy measures to avoid spam comments.

    If you have a photo, mail it to me at gje[atsign]hetnet.nl and i will post it with your request. Maybe I even can pinpoint it myself.

    Regards

    gje

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