Every Detail Counts – Chinoiserie

At Theodore Alexander we use time honoured skills to create our furniture, lighting and works of art. A new series of posts entitled Every Detail Counts will delve into the unique and intricate elements of craftsmanship that distinguishes our pieces.

Let us look at chinoiserie.  Theodore Alexander artists create exotic gardens, of birds and butterflies, bamboo leaves and pagodas on furniture, each scene with layers of depth and colour. There is a 3-dimensionality to the painting that brings it alive. Layer after layer of paint is applied until the pattern stands proud of the surface. If you run your fingers over the paintwork and you will notice how tactile the surface is, how you can trace the artwork with only your fingertips.

There is a hush in the painting area as each artist concentrates on their work. Consider how many hours it takes to build these scenes.  There are some pieces that an artist will work on exclusively for a almost two weeks, building up the decoration on the piece with paint, care and skill in slow but sure increments.

A Theodore Alexander artist carefully applies painted detailing to a chinoiserie design

The decorative scene is carefully built up using layer upon layer of paint

Notice how on this tree the artist has created a textural and bark-like effect using only paint

An exotic bird sits on a forest branch, surrounded by blooms and observing a butterfly. This scene took meticulous skill and flair to execute.

A view of the meticulously painted interior of a Theodore Alexander chinoiserie bookcase (6505-026HN). This bookcase takes twelve days to hand paint the decorative scenes.

An open view of 6505-026HN, a hand painted chinoiserie bookcase.

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