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...Beidermeier is neither named after a region, a designer or maker, but is a word coined in Germany in the mid 1800's (after the peak manufacturing period of this furniture had passed) to satirise the tastes of the times. It was drawn from a fictional character, Weiland Gottlieb Biedermaier, whose humdrum exploits featured in an 1850s Munich satirical magazine. Bieder' is a German word meaning upright or conventional, while 'Meier' is a common German surname and so in the 1850s the term 'Biedermeier' came to symbolise the middle class, decent, reliable and with lots of common sense.
After the mid-1800s the style declined in popularity, but it underwent a revival in the early 20th century, and again in the 1980s and 1990s.
A Biedermeier sofa table, with rectangular top and D-shaped drop ends, the top with oval flame mahogany panelled inlay and crossbanding, two drawers in the frieze; raised on an octagonal column issuing from a fluted vase shaped centre from an octagonal oge
A mahogany Biedermeier table, circa 1850, with a rectangular serpentine top quarter veneered in fine flame mahogany, above a skirt with a continuous crimped band and supported on a squared vasiform pedestal with two stylised fleur-de-lys side embellishment
A mid 19th century Biedermeier, mahogany work table, the hinged rectangular shaped top enclosing compartments on scrolled supports above a carved column with a shaped plinth terminating in paw feet. 78 cm high, 50 cm wide, 40 cm deep
A Biedermeier style birch dining table and twelve French Empire style mahogany dining chairs 20th century, the table with a one-piece rounded rectangular top, above two facetted baluster pedestals, each with a concave quadripartite platform base; each dini
A fine Biedermeier amboyna telescopic extending dining table, with one original additional leaf and four later leaves, the panelled top above a convex frieze and drop down end supports on C-scroll supports with bronzed rams heads on a circular base with do
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