Doyle Chairs 1

George II walnut armchair attributed to Giles Grendey, estimate $40,000-60,000 at Doyle New York.

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They are among the English furniture from the Manhattan’s Upper East Side apartment of Wall Street research analyst Gerard Manolovici (1937-2020). There are 23 lots from the estate in this sale on January 25 with paintings and Asian works of art included in subsequent auctions.

An armchair from c.1735 attributed to the great London cabinetmaker Giles Grendey (1693-1780) is considered one of the great models of the period. It has a shell-carved crest rail, arms with lion head terminals and cabriole legs with shell-carved knees and claw-and-ball feet.

Several examples from a once large and impressive set are known including the celebrated chair from the Percival Griffiths collection, now in the Bryan Collection, Illinois. Doyle’s chair is stamped I with the Bryan chair numbered XIII. It is estimated at $40,000-60,000.

A single George II walnut side chair to a similar muscular Grendey model is guided at $30,000-50,000. It is one of two chairs in the Manolovici dispersal previously in the great English furniture collection formed by Samuel Messer. Heeding the advice of the authority Robert Wemyss Symonds, both were acquired by Messer in the 1950s and sold as part of Christie’s sale of his collection in 1991. 

This period of English furniture also ushers in the age of mahogany and the English rococo.

Also with a Messer provenance is a mahogany armchair c.1750 with an elegant ‘French’ serpentine frame expected to bring $40,000-60,000. The maker is unknown, but the design is among those that feature in the eight Books of Ornament, published annually in London from 1741 by William de la Cour (1700-67).

Again, the chair was once part of a larger set; other examples were sold at Christie's in both New York and London in 2006 hammering for $150,000 and £72,000 respectively.

Doyle Chairs 2

George II mahogany rococo armchair, estimate $40,000-60,000 at Doyle New York.