Global – In this Coronation year Christie’s is honoured to announce the auction of six pairs of Coronation Chairs. The sale will raise funds for four charities chosen by Their Majesties; Emmaus UK, SafeLives, The Prince’s Trust and The Prince’s Foundation.
Specially commissioned by Their Majesties King Charles III and Queen Camilla, the Coronation Chairs seated members of the Royal Family and dignitaries on the occasion of the Coronation.
The upcoming auction of the Chairs will take place globally in The Collector, live online for bidding from 13 October, with the sales series closing on 3 November 2023. The proceeds from the sales of the Chairs will be divided equally between the four charities.
Designed and Created by the Rugby-based cabinetmaker N.E.J. Stevenson, in collaboration with The Snowdon School of Furniture, one hundred Coronation Chairs were made using sustainably-sourced British oak. Highlighting the significance and art of the craftspeople involved, many of the frames were made by six young graduates from The Snowdon School of Furniture.
The Upholstery of the 100 chairs was completed by the Royal Household Upholstery team in their workshops at Frogmore. These Chairs follow the long-held tradition of seats designed for each ceremony throughout the 20th-century.
The Coronation Chairs made for the 1902 Coronation of Edward VII show the influence of the Arts and Crafts movement. In 1911, for the Coronation of the George V, the Chairs were typically Edwardian with leather upholstery and in 1937, the Royal Cypher was embroidered into the backs against velvet for the Coronation of George VI. In 1953 for Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, the design was very similar to that used for her father, King George VI, once again featuring the Royal Cypher set against royal blue velvet.
The Collector is Christie’s international online platform for Decorative Arts, occurring twice yearly in London, New York and Paris. The Collector sales series showcase important English, European and 19th century furniture and works of art, silver, ceramics, glass, clocks and gold boxes from the 16th to the 20th century, which highlight the enduring craftsmanship and beauty of exceptional works of art. Two pairs of chairs will be offered in London, New York and Paris on consecutive days in The Collector (estimate per pair: London £2,000-4,000; New York $3,000-5,000; Paris €2,000-4,000).
After The Collector sales have taken place, additional Coronation Chairs will be offered via private sale, orchestrated by Christie’s, also to raise funds for the named charities.