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Giacometti Furniture in Thursday Morning at STAIR on April 11 at 10am

Swiss brothers Diego and Alberto Giacometti were devoted siblings, working together in the same studio for over forty years where Diego assisted in his older brother’s prodigous career. Diego was a talented sculptor in his own right, encouraged by Alberto to train in Paris,  but was often over-shadowed by his brother resulting in sibling rivalry and a complicated fraternal relationship. During his time studying in Paris, Diego became a very skilled sculpture caster. Using his talent, the brother’s collaborated on the production of household objects for the French designer Jean-Michel Frank. Diego began to explore the production of furniture in earnest on his own after WWII, quickly establishing a loyal clientel which included the fashion designer Hubert de Givenchy.

In contrast to his outgoing, intellectual brother, Diego was a simple, country boy at heart. His interest in nature and the beauty of his childhood landscape in the Swiss Alps influenced his furniture designs through the use of trees and leaves as decorative elements, and the overall feel of the structures themselves as coming from nature in a holistic way. Using his skill at casting, Diego made his maquettes in plaster, as opposed to clay or wax which were the common materials used by sculptors at the time.  In another departure from standard techniques, Diego cast his furniture in bronze, elevating it to the level of sculpture in his choice of material.

Original Diego Giacometti bronze furniture and decorations are rare and command strong prices at auction. Demand for Giacometti furniture fostered the growth of later productions that copied specific pieces of furniture, as well as the production of pieces that look like Giacometti in style but are much more affordable in price.

Our April 11th sale includes several examples of garden furniture in the manner of Diego Giacometti, including several patinated metal tables and garden chairs.

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