Pair of French Giltwood Opera Chairs with Red Velvet Seats, 2nd Empire Period


A delightful pair of French lacquered giltwood ‘Chaises Volantes’, complementary in design but not identical. Designed to be lightweight and easily transportable, this style of chair features an airy structure, with slender uprights and legs generally made from turned wood, which is usually counterbalanced by an exuberant style of decoration. These wonderful examples date from the Napoleon III era, and are comfortably upholstered with luxurious tufted red velvet seat cushions, secured with a nailhead trim. The gleaming golden seat backs are especially ornate; one features a ladder-style back embellished with carved swirls and drops, and ball-shaped finials on each stile, while the other is fitted with turned banisters on its upper half, below a beautifully shaped crest rail. Turned stretchers provide stability for both chairs, which also feature turned and tapered front legs. The undersides of each seat are stamped “Aux Deux Magots, Tapisseries, Tentures, Alger” – in reference to the renowned shopping emporiums of the 1920s and 30s on the fashionable Rue Bab-Azoun, in Algiers.

Additional information

Dimensions 43 × 40 × 86 cm
Seat Height

46 cm

1 in stock