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A Charles X green and gilt tôle peinte four branch colza oil chandelier, the central stem of baluster form decorated with a band of gilt foliate ornament with anthemion, with further gilt laurel leaf decoration. Each candle arm has a green tôle smoke cowl each decorated with cornucopia and the candle socles further decorated in a similar fashion. Retaining the original glass drip pans.Provenance:Queen Juliana of the Netherlands, Soestdijk Palace.
The basic material for tôle was tin-plated sheet iron covered with a black asphaltum varnish that was heat dried and then decorated in gold and painted colours. The process was first developed at Bilston in Staffordshire in the late 17th Century and found significant popularity, being practised extensively throughout the 18th and 19th centuries throughout Europe. This popularity extended further still when, from around the mid 18th century onwards, it was practised in North America, where it is called Toleware. Such wares bear little relation to oriental lacquer, tôle having developed into a wholly independent genre, one that has remained consistently desirable. While it is not uncommon to find trays, canisters or smaller objects, tôle furniture is much rarer. Panels of tôle may occasionally be seen as part of the surface decoration on period furniture, but to find a piece constructed entirely of the material is more exceptional.
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