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Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond

Jacques-Émile Ruhlmann

Jacques-Émile Ruhlmann is many a woodworker’s favorite designer. His pieces are sophisticated and filled with interesting details. His name is almost synonymous with Art Deco furniture.

Ruhlmann was born in 1879. As he was growing up Art Nouveau, with its use of sensuous curves, dominated French design. But the late teens and twentys signaled a new aesthetic.

Rich materials made Ruhlmann furniture luxurious, but even if the pieces had been done simpler woods they would still be magnificent.

Here is a three-legged corner cabinet from 1916 that uses rosewood, ivory, and several other exotic woods. The stylized vase of flowers fills the front. The ivory borders the top and white dots frame the front.

Historical Works
1. Marquetry of Émile Gallé
2. Fra Giovanni da Verona
3. André- Charles Boulle
4. Jan van Mekeren
5. Antonio Barili self-portrait
6. Ernest Gimson
7. Charles Spindler screen
8. Pierre Golle table
9. Ruhlmann Corner Cabinet
10. Nathan Lombard
11. Barili saint
12. Egyptian Woodworking
13. Herter Brothers
14. Chest of Drawers
15. Karl Franz box
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