As I was driving under an oak tree in Lake Forest the other day, I realized once again that great color is a relative concept based on just how much you have seen. The tree’s leaves were a violet red on the outside and yellow on the other side so that when you approached the tree, it was red with glimpses of yellow and once you were under the canopy, it was yellow. It was extraordinary.
Does that mean that the the trees that I saw in the University of Wisconsin Arboretum the next day, Acer rubrums that shone pink in the afternoon sun, were any less beautiful? Not at all, they were stunning too.
Collectors of English furniture almost always strive to buy good color. It is as important as design or provenance. Designers, as a rule, concentrate on form and of course, they have to make things fit. As an antique dealer, there are certain things that I can’t resist and great color is one of them. Sometimes, I find that the adjective “great” covers a lot of ground.