The Steven Greenberg collection of Art Deco art, furniture, and accessories represents the magnificence of a time relived through the eyes of this special collector. Capturing the Art Deco zeitgeist through selective acquisition, with an acute eye towards exquisite beauty, Greenberg amassed works by Dupas, Dunand, and Ruhlmann. As Kathryn Hausman, president of the Art Deco Society of New York, who was both a close personal and professional friend of Steven Greenberg notes, “ When it came to his collection, Steven had both an eye for attention to detail and an appreciation for the masterful craftsmanship and beauty that epitomized the Art Deco period.
He lived and worked amongst these works of beauty as though each piece spoke to him of a time and artist still alive. Steven's ability to create such a collection illustrates his profound knowledge and love of the period.” With the majority of his exemplary collection centered on the works of these three titans of the times, Greenberg sets the Christie's stage with a feast for the splendor of the sublime.
A COLLECTOR’S PASSION FOR BEAUTY
Talking sublime, Paul Bonet's hand-tooled leather binding with George Barbier's lively illustrations is artistic virtuosity. Influenced by Pierre Legrain, Bonet's work exhibits a three dimensionality that is highly innovative. This black Morocco gild leather binding, whose cover is encrusted with a “sunk-in lacquer panel in black, red, gold, silver, and eggshell, and whose lower cover is gilt and decorated with red morocco inlay and golden iridescent silk end leaves” exhibits the whimsy and fanciful decoration of the illustrations within.
Incapsulating the beauty and materials of the Art deco period, Bonet was both highly imaginative and daring. Unlike any Eileen Gray I have ever seen, this rare six panel 1923 dark brown colored lacquer screen is a wonderful example of the designer's art moderne style. Incised and painted wood panels display linear and arced shapes reminiscent of the De Stijl movement, Gray's work shows a sympathetic alliance to the international artists of her time, both in innovation and technique.
The work is about as much as the spaces she defined within the lines as it is about the process and genius that these lines distinguished. Jean Dupas? pair of wall panels, dated 1934/5, define Greenberg's taste for the period as well as epitomize the Art Deco period itself. The allegorical themes which it portrays in full splendor are as bold and magnificent as the work itself. Sea monsters, sirens, waves – a drama played out verre eglomise display a boldness of line and spirit that raise this work to magnificent artistic heights. Originally designed for the Grand Salon of the Normandie, the gold, silver and palladium leafing palette must have made a grand gesture matched only by the ship itself. Steven Greenberg's masterpiece collection of French Art Deco artistry highlights the unfaltering eye of a collector's passion for beauty and genius.