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'Kang Tao' Bronze Dining Table by Philip and Kelvin LaVerne, c. 1965, Signed

$75,600
$95,00020% Off

About

For collectors of Philip and Kelvin LaVerne, the pièce de résistance is this highly coveted double-signed 'Kang Tao' dining table. Given so few LaVerne's were made as dining tables, most of their production were in coffee and cocktail tables, to find a dining table is rare to begin with - but the monumental sized rectangular 'Kang Tao' is incredibly rare and highly sought after. This oh-so-gorgeous and oh-so-rare dining table features the Tao motif in its entirety - something you don't get on the smaller coffee tables in which only a portion of the artwork is displayed, this patinated bronze and pewter with hand applied polychrome, completed in the mid-1960s by Philip and Kelvin LaVerne, a father and son American artisan team. The 72" inch long top sits atop four bamboo styled bronze legs with natural patina to match the top. Underneath the base is the studio label bearing the Philip LaVerne Galleries Ltd logo with their motto "Works of Art" and studio address. On the top of the base, the table is signed Philip Kelvin LaVerne in bronze over pewter. Similar to the Chan, Spring Festival and other Chinoiserie motifs, the Tao features a traditional street scene of people amongst weeping willows and ancient structures bordered by an angular wall in between. This rare, coveted, in-demand and sought-after dining table is best described as a functional sculpture. Philip and Kelvin considered themselves artists, rather than furniture makers, and their gallery motto was "Works of Art". So for most of the collector and antique dealer world, we consider this a sculpture that can be used as a dining table, cafe or breakfast table, center table or game table. It is sturdy and structurally sound, and since the materials are of a strong and robust nature - it is absolutely suitable for every day use. But of course, if you prefer, you can place it in your room purely for viewing purposes, it is similar to any other piece of quality, Fine art that you would otherwise place on a museum wall. This Kang Tao dining table is an incredible option for the most discriminating client or collector. Consider for a Mid-Century Modern, Modern, Post-Modern or Contemporary home. Also an interesting addition of Juxtaposition in a French neoclassical, Traditional, Spanish, Transitional or Hollywood Regency room. Due to its formidable materials, this is suitable for residential or commercial use, perfect for any magazine-cover-worthy interior design project. REFERENCE: Philip and Kelvin LaVerne, Sculpture III, Paper Catalog, 1960s. Shown on page 2 and page 50 the TAO motif in a smaller coffee table form, description states, “SU-TAO - A panorama of life in ancient China, delicately sculpted, enhanced with patinas of natural beauty”. Shown on page 8 and page 50 the TAO motif in a circular shelf table form, description states, "TAO & MING SHELF - A winding wall united architecture and the elements. Hand sculpted of bronze, pewter-enhanced with patinas of subtle beauty". Shown on page 31 and page 53 the TAO motif on a circular game table, description states, "The delicate artistry of the Tao period is brilliantly sculpted in bronze and pewter". Shown on page 47 and page 56 the TAO motif on a large rectangular credenza, description states, "Delicately hand sculpted in bronze and pewter, a highly functional cabinet depicting a poetic theme of the Tao dynasty". Common misspellings: Phillip and Kevin Laverne, Philips and Kelven Lavern, Phillips and Calvin Leverne. MEASUREMENTS: H 30" x W 72" x D 44" CONDITION: Very good vintage condition, all original. Minor wear to top. Top possesses normal use marks in a few areas including a few small water marks. Polychroming is present, beautiful patina throughout. Very nice example, ready for immediate use. Top signature clear and visible, original gallery tag present underneath.

Details

  • Creator
  • Dimensions
    Height: 30 in. (76.2 cm)Width: 72 in. (182.88 cm)Depth: 44 in. (111.76 cm)
  • Style
    Mid-Century Modern (Of the Period)
  • Materials and Techniques
    Bronze,Pewter,Hand-Crafted,Polychromed
  • Place of Origin
  • Period
  • Date of Manufacture
    1960s
  • Condition
    Very good vintage condition. Ready for immediate use. Please see description for greater detail.
  • Seller Location
    Los Angeles, CA
  • Reference Number
    1stDibs: LU1330227414682

Shipping & Returns

  • Shipping
    Ships From: Long Beach, CA
  • Return Policy

    A return for this item may be initiated within 14 days of delivery.

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About the Designer

Philip and Kelvin LaVerne

Look closely at any vintage furniture designed by father-son duo Philip and Kelvin LaVerne and a cacophony of stylistic influences reveals itself.

The LaVernes’ position at the intersection of art and design was the result of their combined backgrounds: Philip (1907–87) studied painting with Ashcan School artist John Sloan at the Art Students League of New York, while his son, Kelvin (b. 1937), attended the Parsons School of Design, taking classes in art history, furniture design and metalwork. The resulting merge of stylistic elements and innovative processes make for singular designs that defy categorization, striking a balance between modern and traditional, intricate and minimal, art piece and functional item. Their work was also strikingly different from the modern furniture created by Philip’s brother Erwine and his wife, Estelle, of Laverne Originals.

The LaVernes began producing one-of-a-kind furniture and sculpture in the mid-1950s out of a studio on Wooster Street in New York City before opening a showroom on Manhattan’s East 57th Street. As their 1960s advertisements declared: “It’s not just functional and not just art, it’s an investment.”

The LaVernes married a stunning array of techniques and styles to achieve their singular, deeply layered look for one-of-a-kind and limited-edition pieces. Chinoiserie motifs abound on many of their acid-etched tables, but art from ancient Greece and Egypt also served as inspiration. The influence of figurative sculptors is evident in designs like coffee tables and side tables with bronze bodies serving as frames or bases; other pieces, meanwhile, have deeply detailed surfaces and strikingly simple silhouettes.

The duo developed their own unconventional methods — sometimes to an extreme — for finishing their pieces: Techniques employed by the LaVernes included acid washing and burying furniture underground in a mixture of soil and chemicals to achieve a desired patina through oxidation. While they sometimes used pewter and silver, bronze was one of their most commonly employed materials, either etched or cast and sometimes paired with glass tops. Their partnership ended when Philip died in 1987 and Kelvin shifted his practice to sculpture.

Find an extraordinary range of vintage Philip and Kelvin LaVerne tables, decorative objects and other furniture on 1stDibs.

About the Seller
5.0
Located in Los Angeles, CA

Automaton is the premier source for early-production originals of hard-to-find 20th-century designs and functional art, serving a range of clients, from celebrities and interior designers to aficionados with modest budgets. Its 20,000-square-foot Los Angeles space is packed with rare examples of designs from a large repertoire of such designers as Philip and Kelvin LaVerne, Vladimir Kagan, Eero Saarinen, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Jorge Zalszupin, Sergio Rodrigues and Giuseppe Scapinelli.

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Established in 2012
1stDibs seller since 2015
1,756 sales on 1stDibs
Typical response time: 1 hour
Associations
20th Century Specialists
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