"Gentleman's Quarters"by Andrew LaMar Hopkins 20 x 16 acrylic on canvas
My latest painting titled "Gentleman's Quarters" finished yesterday shows the fashionably appointed Louisiana bedroom of a French Creole gentleman dating from around 1830.
Gautier-Dagoty, 1774, Versailles.
Marie-Antoinette playing her harp in her bedroom at Versailles.
Although the architecture of the room, the beamed ceiling and ornate mantel is late 18th century Neoclassical Louisiana. Finer Creole homes of the 18th century had wraparound mantels with ornate carved over mantels referred to as Trumeau's in Louisiana. The focal point of the room shows a Creole fireplace. Although Louisiana has tropical weather most of the year some winters can become a little chilly. Most homes built during the 18th and 19th century had fireplaces in just about every room. Creole homes had Creole mantelpieces like in this case. They are called wrap around mantles. The sides of the mantel extend and wrap the chimney breast. The ornate wooden part above the mantle is referred to as a Trumeau on 18th and early 19th century Louisiana inventory's. In 18th century France a Trumeau was a decorative wooden panel above a mantel that incorporated a mirror and decorative painting.
In Louisiana a Trumeau was just decorative paneling above a mantle where one might place a mirror and painting on top of the molding. Mirrors or paintings were usually not incorporated into the piece like in French Trumeau's. Some of the finer homes of Louisiana and New Orleans had the upper mantle Trumeau included into the rooms like this one.
French 1830's fashion plate
Unlike Les Americans, In Louisiana Creole's entertained and received guest into there bedrooms, the most comfortable rooms in homes at the time. In English or American society a guest or visitor would almost never see a bedroom unless someone was sick. The English and American's were very strict about public and private rooms and areas of a home. Formal parlors or reception rooms set aside for the reception of guests and other visitors in the English speaking world of the 18th and 19th century screened guest from the rest of the home.
Pitot House museum circa 1799 showing a Louisiana Creole mantel
In France and Creole Louisiana the way of life and living was different and a lot more laid back. Rooms were multi-functional. Bedrooms or chambers were the most comfortable rooms in homes. You could lounge around in bedrooms were you had to sit up in parlors. Why not invite your guest in your most comfortable room, The Creoles and French thought. The Gentleman is fashionable dressed in a pink and black embroidered satin house robe and matching cap the latest fashion from Paris of the 1830's.
French Empire portrait
American Federal period portrait miniature on ivory
The furniture is a mixture of Louisiana Creole pieces like the Mahogany beehive leg Armoire and four poster classical bed both ending with brass ball feet. Mixed with classical French furniture like the two Louis Philippe chairs by the American Empire center table with black and gold vain Egyptian marble top. The late 18th century Gentleman's dressing table next to the Armoire is English as well as the early 19th century Prince of Wells plumed gilded mirror over the mantel.
English Regency patented metal Argand lamp. A argand lamp is a home lighting oil lamp producing a light output of 6 to 10 candela which was invented and patented in 1780 by Aimé Argand. Aside from the improvement in brightness, the more complete combustion of the wick and oil required much less frequent trimming of the wick.
Blue John was exported to France where is was used by ormolu workers during the reign of Louis XVI (1774–91).
The profile of this large Blue John vase is derived from an ancient Greek pottery krater, a large vessel intended for wine. Thomas Hope designed several vases of this form in bronze and gilt metal, including one appropriately ornamented with 'Bacchanalian masks, vine wreaths, and other emblems of Bacchus'. It is interesting to note that the masks to the handles are possibly derived from a design published in 1798 for 'Antique Vases in dark oriental Marbles from the Collection in the Museum of the Vatican' by C. H. Tatham in Etchings representing the best examples of Ancient Ornamental Architecture; drawn from the originals in Rome, and other parts of Italy, during the years 1794, 1795, and 1796.
A magnificent English late 18th/early 19th century Blue-John vase of large size. The socle is solid blue john and the square base is made of blue-john, coffin cut with Derbyshire black marble mouldings.
A GEORGE III ORMOLU AND BLUE JOHN 'GRIFFIN' VASE PERFUME-BURNER
AFTER A DESIGN BY SIR WILLIAM CHAMBERS, BY MATTHEW BOULTON, CIRCA 1770
The ovoid body mounted with rams' heads and laurel swags, with domed lid and pinecone finial, the waisted gadrooned socle supported by three laurel-festooned crouching griffins, above a circular stepped and foliate-cast base
The Burnt orange lacquer and fancy gilt clock is Charles X circa 1820's. The art work and decorative arts are European and are Grand Tour pieces that would have been bought back to America by wealthy travelers like the painting over the Armoire the "Eruption of Mount Vesuvius a copy after Pierre Jacques Volaire. Creole's loved Ancestral portrait's and they were displayed in different rooms of a home. On the mantel are turned Derbyshire "Blue John" classical vases (also known as Derbyshire Spar, or simply Blue John) is a semi-precious mineral, a form of fluorite with bands of a purple-blue or yellowish colour. In the UK it is found only at Blue John Cavern and Treak Cliff Cavern at Castleton in Derbyshire. During the 19th century, it was mined for its ornamental value, and mining continues on a small scale today.
Louisiana's Creole's were highly Catholic and displayed religious artifacts and art in there homes, like the 18th century French Ivory Crucifix water gilt Rococo frame over the bed. With fresh & dried Easter Sago palms tucked behind the Crucifix. On the American night stand next to the table is a porcelain Vesilleuse. A Veilleuse was designed as a tea warmer and a night light at the same time. A small candle would be placed in the little bottom tray. The Gondola chair next to the nightstand with scalloped vase splat and saber legs was a popular form in New Orleans.
18th century French Ivory Crucifix in gilt frame Rococo
Also on the mantel are a pair of 1820 English Regency patented metal Argand lamps. A argand lamp is a home lighting oil lamp producing a light output of 6 to 10 candela which was invented and patented in 1780 by Aimé Argand. Aside from the improvement in brightness, the more complete combustion of the wick and oil required much less frequent trimming of the wick.
In France, they are known as "Quinquets" after Antoine-Arnoult Quinquet, a pharmacist in Paris, who used the idea originated by Argand and popularized it in France. He is sometimes credited with the addition of the glass chimney to the lamp.
1820's French Charles X clock
A early 19th century English Prince of Wells plumed gilded mirror
Pierre-Jacques Volaire - View of the Eruption of Mount Vesuvius
A Federal period travailing studded leather trunk is dated 1821 sits in front of the bed. Next to the trunk is a Mocha ware black sponge decorated pottery chamber pot. English pottery like cremeware and mocha ware are found on just about every Creole property that is dug and excavated in Louisiana, English imported pottery was inexpensive and was used in day to day use and broke more frequently then finer porcelain, Fine French porcelain was only used for special occasions and not every day use.
Louisiana Creole Mahogany beehive leg Armoire
American Classical gilt and mahogany marble top center table
French Louis Philippe closed armchair
Louisiana's Creole's were highly Catholic and displayed religious artifacts and art in there homes, like the 18th century French Ivory Crucifix water gilt frame Rococo frame over the bed. With fresh & dried Easter Sago palms tucked behind the Crucifix. On the American night stand next to the table is a porcelain Vesilleuse. A Veilleuse was designed as a tea warmer and a night light at the same time. A small candle would be placed in the little bottom tray. The Gondola chair next to the nightstand with scalloped vase splat and saber legs was a popular form in New Orleans.
"Gentleman's Quarters"by Andrew LaMar Hopkins 20 x 16 acrylic on canvas
Over the chair are two hand colored engravings of Camellias. I enjoyed working on this painting as arranging a period room is always a lot of fun.
"Gentleman's Quarters"by Andrew LaMar Hopkins 20 x 16 original acrylic on canvas is available for sale here http://artwanted.com/imageview.cfm?id=1294371