BOOK REVIEW FOR
WELSH FURNITURE 1250-1950 :
A CULTURAL HISTORY OF CRAFTSMANSHIP AND DESIGN
BY RICHARD BEBB
taken from: www.welshfurniture.com
"Consider books as works of art, in this case a gorgeous two-volume set in a handsome slipcase. Before delving more deeply, thumb the pages and marvel at the rich design and illustrations (1500 plates, most in color). The elegant cursive letters on the title page are printed with a faint shadow behind them, giving them the illusion of floating above the page... Such production values normally are lavished on coffee-table books featuring more formal or "high-style" decorative arts (e.g., Chippendale and Sheraton), raising the question: does the subject folk furniture merit such treatment? The answer is an unqualified "yes." ... Bebb's discoveries in pursuit of seven centuries of continuity and change in one of Wales' most highly-developed traditional arts establish him as a cultural historian par excellence... Wales, one might conclude from this book, is to Great Britain's furniture what Chaucer and Shakespeare are to her literature. Glorying in their use of local oak, the ornate heraldic carvings of the Renaissance and the sleek surfaces, relieved by sensual arched panels, of the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries represent the "golden age" of Welsh furniture. Drawing on hundreds of examples in museum and private collections, archival documents, early illustrations, and travel accounts, Bebb establishes for this heritage a meaningful historical and cultural context."
Dr John Burrison, Georgia State University - Journal of Folklore Research