Three Piece Louis XVI-Style Upholstered Giltwood Salon Suite, circa 1870
41 inches high x 66 inches wide x 26 inches deep (104.1 x 167.6 x 66.0 cm) (settee)
PROPERTY FROM THE COLLECTION OF STANLEY G. AND BARBARA K. COHEN, TEXAS
Christy Donoghue Antiques, Victoria, Texas;
Private Collection, Texas, acquired from above, 1971.
The suite with gilt egg-and-dart border to each piece, consisting of a settee and two fauteuils.
Stanley and Barbara Cohen began collecting in two categories familiar to many: numismatics and stamps. Barbara asked to join her neighbor who began a coin and stamp collection for her children. Each afternoon, they would place stamps in books and arrange coins in folders. Interest spread to her husband Stanley, who developed a deep interest in stamps, and created the collection which was sold in 1986 as The Stanley Cohen Collection of Classic U.S. When the Cohens decided that it was time to furnish their home in the early 1970s, Colonel Arthur and Juliet Dryfuss, clock collectors from south Texas, served as mentors guiding them to expand their collecting interest to antique furniture, and placed them in the care of Christie's Antiques in Victoria, Texas. The couple visited the shop and were enthralled with the rich selection of French antiques which perfectly suited their tastes. The first pieces purchased were personifications of their new owners: a folding card table for Stanley's interest in duplicate bridge, and a lady's roll top desk for Barbara.
Like so many, along with their great finds, the Cohens encountered a mislabeled piece. Barbara remembers purchasing a pair of chairs represented as 18th century with peeling black paint described as "alligator crackle". Shortly after, when one chair broke Stanley began to question the story behind these chairs and was led to do research which unveiled their true origins: Michigan Chair Company, 1915. While a well-regarded chair maker, it was later sold in a garage sale.
Not deterred by a bad experience, the Cohen's sought out knowledge, building an extensive research library and annually attending the Houston Theta Antique Show where they sharpened their eyes, learning from dealers across the country. Stanley and Barbara's individual taste in antiques developed as the years progressed, and possibly their most loved collection are the 19th century animalier bronzes that follow. They enjoyed the complexity their differences brought to the collection and the stories that came from their wonderful adventure, as each piece was carefully and lovingly chosen. Heritage is now pleased to offer a new opportunity for these items to continue their stories.