A Pair of George II Giltwood Mirrors. Attributed to Matthias Lock, circa 1750photo: Christie's Images Ltd 2012 

Each of cartouche-form with pierced scrolling foliate cresting centered by a shell, the sides with bearded masks and the apron centered by a female mask, carved with bullrushes, flowers and foliate scrolls and a strapwork ground, the mirror plates probably old replacements and one re-silvered; 59 in. (150 cm.) high; 31 in. (79 cm.) wide (2). Lot 114. Estimate $150,000 - $250,000

Provenance: Acquired from Stair & Company, New York. 

Notes: This elaborate pair of scroll-framed pier-glasses, designed in the George II 'picturesque' fashion with reeds embellished with paired scrolled herms, is derived from a 'sconce' pattern published by the specialist carver and pattern-book author Matthias Lock (d.1765) in his Six Sconces,1744, pl. 4. (M. Snodin ed, Rococo; Art and design in Hogarth's England, London, 1984, pl. XIII and L4). During the 1740s, he was described as 'the famous Matthias Lock, the most excellent wood carver', and reputed to be the 'the best Ornament draughts-man in Europe'. Thomas Johnson's autobiography begun in 1777 reveals that Lock was working with James Whittle (d.1759), 'Carver' to Frederick, Prince of Wales (d.1752) by 1744, a relationship that lasted until at least 1755 (J. Simon, 'Thomas Johnson's The Life of the Author,', Furniture History,, 2003, p. 3).

Other closely related mirrors by Lock include the celebrated pier-glass with matching table supplied to the 2nd Earl Poulett for the Tapestry Room at Hinton House, Somerset (c.1735) now in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London (D. Fitz-Gerald, Georgian Furniture, 1969, pl.40); a pair of pier-glass frames for Ramsbury, Wiltshire and sold by the Trustees of the late Sir Francis Burdett, 8th Bt., Christie's, London, 22 October 1953, lot 111 (R. Edwards and P. Macquoid, The Dictionary of English Furniture, 1954, vol. II, p. 339, fig. 72.) and a pair supplied to Uppark, Sussex (Uppark: National Trust Guide Book, 1985, p. 18).
An pier-glass of this identical pattern sold Christie's, New York, 14-15 April 2011, lot 549 and another example is illustrated in H. Hayward, World Furniture, 1965, p. 132, fig. 486.

Christie's. The Van Cliburn Collection. 17 May 2012. New York, Rockefeller Plaza