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INTERIORS

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Interiors and furnishings are the primary expressions of the Le Régence and Louis XV (Rococo) styles. Although associated with the reign of Louis XV, the Rococo style does not confine itself to those years. Attributes of Rococo begin to manifest in the late 17th century in the published designs and ornament of Jean Bérain and others and in the early-18th-century rooms at Versailles.

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Le Régence characteristics include a general lightening in the size of rooms and scale of finishes and decoration; asymmetry; and the appearance of naturalistic, curvilinear ornamentation. During the 1670s and 1680s, rooms become less formal. Wood paneling replaces heavy marble-paneled walls, columns and pilasters disappear, and cornices diminish in size. Corners and tops of paneling, doors, and windows begin to curve. Naturalistic, exotic, or fanciful ornamentation, which is usually asymmetrical, replaces classical.

Rocaille decoration with its asymmetrical profusion of curving tendrils, foliage, flowers combined with shells, and minute details defines the Louis XV interior. Also characteristic are themes and motifs of gaiety, pleasure, romance, youth, and the exotic. In all but the grandest and most formal rooms, classical elements are rare. Most rooms maintain a rectangular form, but curving lines, continuity of parts, and asymmetrical arrangements of naturalistic decorations characterize wall panels and finishes, ceilings, textiles, furniture, and decorative arts. Paneling may be designed to incorporate sofas, consoles, tables, beds, and/or mirrors.

Ornate Rococo interiors contrast with refined, plainer exteriors. Important and ceremonial spaces retain their monumental scale, whereas private rooms become smaller and more intimate. Some spaces are designed for special purposes, such as music rooms, but dining rooms remain uncommon. The planning and decoration of private spaces reflects a desire for comfort and convenience, whereas state apartments continue to proclaim wealth and rank

 

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Written by callawayinteriordesign

May 30, 2012 at 12:14 am

Posted in Uncategorized

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