The San Francisco Fall Antiques Show is delighted to have the sponsorship of de Gournay, manufacturer of exquisite hand crafted wall coverings. The firm was founded in 1986 by Claud Cecil Gurney. After searching for artisans to restore the antique wallpaper in his own home, he discovered that this traditional art was on the verge of disappearing and made it his mission to resurrect it. Traveling to China, he searched out artists whose families had generations of experience and shared the passion for continuing these ancient techniques. While inspiration for de Gournay’s products come from the 17th and 18th centuries, they are equally at home in contemporary settings.
As part of this sponsorship de Gournay has created three completely unique hand painted wallpapers, designed exclusively by three talented and esteemed San Francisco-based interior designers: Fisher Weisman, Allison Caccoma and Geoffrey de Sousa. These wallpapers will be on display in the designers’ vignettes at the main entrance to the show. Each wallpaper corresponds to the theme of each individual vignette: Antiquities, 18th Century and Mid-Century Modern.
Flowered Damask designed by Allison Caccoma
Allison Caccoma's vignette - entitled Lounging in the Reflection of the 18th Century - references a textile fragment from theVictoria and Albert museum, which she has completely reinvented and reinvigorated by depicting the design in an unexpected over-sized scale and using a contemporary ‘bas relief’ technique. With this technique, de Gournay was able to raise the damask pattern out of the rose antiqued hand gilded ground to create a 3-dimensional effect. The pattern is then burnished by hand to enhance the drama and depth.
Dancing Araucaria designed by Geoffrey de Sousa
Geoffrey de Sousa's vignette - entitled Passage of Time - adopts the theme of mid-century modern and pays homage to the mid-century Brazilian furniture designer Joaquim Tenreiro. To provide a context for Joaquim’s pieces, Geoffrey referenced the sculptural Araucaria forests native to Brazil in his design for a hand painted de Gournay silk wallpaper. The horizontal, spreading branches echo the space age forms iconic to the mid-century period. Geoffrey says “With my Portuguese heritage and Great Grandmother being born in Santos, Brazil I gained great interest in the work of JoaquimTenreiro years ago.”
Rainfall designed by Fisher Weisman
Fisher Weisman, whose vignette theme is Antiquities, have referenced a golden tapestry that Andrew Fisher designed as part of a series of tapestries he has created over the past few years incorporating paper, steel and linen — all dipped in 24 carat Italian gold leaf, sometimes glazed with oil paint. Fisher Weisman say, “These tapestries blend a sense of the ancient and the modern and were inspired by antique textiles (particularly by ancient ceremonial Chinese armor), by music (particularly Eric Satie), and the weather (rain, light snow, and wind).” One of the tapestries directly inspired their design for the lattice effect wallpaper which depicts falling squares, hand gilded by de Gournay in 22 carat gold and 12 carat white gold onto an intense midnight blue silk base. The squares appear to tumble down the silk wallpaper so the vignette is literally dripping in precious gold.
Hannah Cecil Gurney, director of de Gournay, explains: “Working on these three custom projects has been an exciting and extraordinary project for de Gournay that we shall remember for a long time to come.We hope you find these wallpapers as inspiring as we do. Thank you to the talented designers whose visions created them.”
And thank you to de Gournay, for this amazing and absolutely unique contribution to the San Francisco Fall Antiques Show!