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Tea Table, from the Dining Room of the Hôtel Guimard, Paris, France

Hector Guimard, French, 1867–1942
Ateliers d'Art et de Fabrication, Paris, France, c.1897–1914
Pearwood, gilded bronze, and glass
Made in
Paris, Île-de-France, France, Europe
Current Location
On View, Gallery 135
33 x 35 x 26 1/4 in. (83.8 x 88.9 x 66.7 cm)
Credit Line
Director's Discretionary Fund, Museum Purchase by exchange, and funds given by Susan and David Mesker and Zoe and Max Lippman
Public Domain
Object Number
Nature was the primary source of inspiration for the French architect Hector Guimard, who animated his designs with abstract clusters of buds, unfurling plant forms, and writhing tendrils. Guimard sought a new mode of expression that broke from historical styles. Rather than applying ornament as separate decorative elements, he worked like a sculptor, fusing structure and ornament, often creating linear whiplash contours that conveyed movement. During the Art Nouveau period, architects worked in a variety of materials, designing not only entire buildings and architectural ornaments but their interiors and furnishings as well.
1907 - c.1948
Hector Guimard (1867–1942) and Adeline Oppenheim Guimard (b. 1872), Paris, France; New York, NY, USA [1]

c.1948 - 2003
Private Collection, France, acquired from Adeline Oppenheim Guimard [2]

Barry Friedman, Ltd., New York, NY, USA, purchased from private collection

2003 -
Saint Louis Art Museum, purchased from Barry Friedman, Ltd. [3]

[1] The table is shown in an undated photograph of the dining room of Hôtel Guimard, 122 Avenue Mozart, Paris, the residence designed and furnished by Guimard for himself and his wife in 1909/10-1912 [Thiébaut, Philippe. "Guimard." Paris: Éditions de la Réunion des Musées Nationaux, 1992, p. 401, fig. 9; and Graham, F. Lanier. "Hector Guimard." New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 1970. p. 23].

[2] Adeline Oppenheim Guimard, by then widowed, return to Paris from New York in 1948 and dispersed the contents of the Hôtel Guimard, making donations to three museums and giving other pieces, including this table, to friends of the family [letter from Alain Blondel, Guimard scholar, to Barry Friedman, Barry Friedman Ltd., September 9, 2003; Barry Friedman Ltd invoice].

[3] Invoice dated October 23, 2003 [SLAM document files]. Minutes of the Collections Committee of the Board of Trustees, Saint Louis Art Museum, December 2, 2003.
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