I went to the Art Institute of Chicago this past weekend and explored a bit. Just to note, if you have a Chicago Public Library Card then you have access to Museum Passes that grant you and three other people free admission into Chicago museums. There’s a lot to see at the Art Institute, but I’m giving attention to the pieces that instantly caught my eye and drew me in for a closer look. So consider this post the first in a series in which I share what I admired and talk a little about the artist.
Carlo Bugatti (1856 – 1940) was a prominent furniture designer and an intrinsic part of the Bugatti Dynasty, now widely known for their high-end vehicles. Born in Milan, Carlo studied at both the Brera Academy in Milan and the Académie des Beaux Arts in Paris. His style was distinct, inspired by exotic cultures, namely Japanese and Islam, his work differed from the European furniture traditions of that time. Carlo built his pieces using a combination of wood, copper, vellum, mother-of-pearl, or silk and he hand-painted animal and plant designs. His work was exhibited in Milan, Paris, and London and he developed an international following.
The pieces that left me in awe were the Bugatti Frame and Table. The frame is a vellum-covered inlaid wood mirror inset with pewter, but I am unsure about the table. Bugatti pieces have an estimated value in the thousands. I would love to own one of his works, maybe in the distant future.