Learn about Biedermeier

Beidermeier is the name given to a style of blond-wood furniture and to decorative arts popular in Germany, Austria and Scandinavia between the early and mid 19th century. Popular at the same time as the French Empire style, the Beidermeier design was based on utilitarian principles, and has been described as French Empire style without the flamboyance.

Beidermeier furniture typically has straight or gently curved lines without elaborate carvings and often used classical motifs such as columns, gables, egg and dart and bead and reel. Ornamentations in brass and sometimes inlay were added to enhance the straight lines. Columns or bases, and keyhole escutcheons were sometimes ebonised to contrast with the light-coloured timbers used in construction. Burr veneers were also popular because of their variations in colour and attractive markings.

Biedermeier furniture used timbers that were locally available in Germany and Scandinavia such as walnut, cherry, birch, ash and oak, rather than the more expensive imported timbers such as mahogany. Whilst this timber was available, the taxes applied at import and between states made it too expensive for the Biedermeier market. more...
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A German Biedermeier cylindrical roll top desk having fitted interior. 114 cm high, 107 cm wide, 37.5 cm deep

A German Biedermeier four drawer flame mahogany secretaire chest. 88 cm high, 97 cm long, 52 cm deep

A Swedish Biedermeier walnut writing table, the rectangular top with an upstand shelf raised on turned spindles, a single drawer to the frieze, raised on a turned stretcher base. 92 cm x 51 cm x 92 cm

Biedermeier desk, of rectangular form with classical inlay sides, ebony stringing to top, three drawers, stretcher base. Height 80 cm. Depth 76 cm. Width 133 cm

Biedermeier fall front Deskof architectonic form, with fitted interior and secret compartments and two drawers below. Approx. Height 176 cm. Width 105 cm. Depth 53 cm

A Scandinavian Biedermeier mahogany bureau, circa 1860, the mahogany veneered bureau with one drawer above a drop down leather surfaced writing surface and fitted interior over double doors and a plinth base. Height 137 cm. Width 94 cm. Depth 38 cm

Biedermeier cylinder roll top desk 19th century the interior fitted with three short drawers each side of a central compartment door inlaid with classical figures and obelisks, three long drawers. Height 122 cm. Width 114 cm. Depth 59 cm

A German Biedermeier 19th century flame mahogany concave shaped writing desk, having three drawers and six small drawers above, supported on ornately carved turned legs

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