Explain The Louis The XIV Period

Explain the Louis the XIV period. Design expert Deborah Burnett gives an overview of the Louis XIV period. This is a period of transition and we are moving to more of an international scale. The French began...

This is a period of transition and we are moving to more of an international scale. The French began to come into furniture making and in the 1680's Louis the XIV begins influencing design. He is heavy but he knows proportion and symmetry and he tells his craftsmen, "We want to be different from the Dutch and the Italian. We don't want this heavy, massive, "scrolly" stuff. We want our own, more delicate, intricate designs but with heavier legs." The French liked the idea of light coming in so they wanted everything to be lighter. This is also when we began to see paint being used on walls, primarily for decoration. And so a lot of the chairs, the common everyday chair of the Louis the XIV period, started to have coloration to them and they started to follow the lines of classicism, but again it's symmetrical and proportionate. The style has heavier legs yet it's still light and fashionable and you're going to be seeing coloration that you have not seen before. You see purples and teals and turquoises and clear greens but at the same time you are also seeing pastels of pinks and greens and blues. In the mid 1700's Louis XV took the throne and he began lightening the color palettes and lightening up the hand in terms of turning the legs. By the time the 1780's rolled around when Louis the XVI comes in, everything is gilded in gold because there have been somewhat peaceful conditions for a while. They had accumulated all this gold in the coffers and they began placing it on everything. They also have new architectural techniques now to make the holes in the walls much larger and so more light is coming in. Consequently the colors are becoming more refined because visibility is better and they bring in colors like Chartreuse and lemon yellows and baby pink and colors that had not been seen before.

© High Speed Ventures 2011