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Cabinet, stinkwood, beefwood, brass, Cape, late 18th century. Two staged and gabled, with the inside of the door panels painted with a biblical scene depicting the return of Judge Jephtah. From the Iziko Social History furniture collection.

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The inside of the door panels of a stinkwood cabinet painted with a biblical scene depicting the return of Judge Jephtah. From the Iziko Social History furniture collection.

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Lady's bureau and work table, ca. 1850. On view at Iziko Bertram House. From the Iziko Social History collection.

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Egg chair, wool, steel, Denmark, 1959. Designed by Arne Jacobson in 1959, the chair was made by Fritz Hansen. Covered in original yellow wool fabric. From the Iziko Social History furniture collection.

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Four-poster bed, teak and stinkwood, Cape, ca. 1800. Modern hangings. Ex De Pass Collection. From the Iziko Social History furniture collection.

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Bureau, stinkwood, Cape, 1770. Five simplified Rococo style escutcheon plates in Cape silver, marked IAB (Johannes Andries Bam, 1749ca. 1800). Opening writing top with the inlaid monogram DS. Formerly in possession of the Steyn family. Ex De Pass Collection. From the Iziko Social History furniture collection.

Furniture

The furniture collection contains a substantial amount of South African furniture, dating from the seventeenth to twentieth centuries. The emphasis of the collection is on Cape Furniture, originating from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and is particularly well represented in the chair, table and armoire collections. Country and town furniture are represented; this collection includes some rare and unique items. 

The indigenous wood called stinkwood (Ocotea bullata) has long been associated with Cape furniture, particularly in combination with yellowwood. Outstanding examples of Cape furniture are on view at two of the Social History sites, namely Iziko Koopmans-de Wet House and the Groot Constantia Homestead.

Fine examples of English furniture from the Georgian period are on view at the Iziko Bertram House, besides examples of Dutch and Flemish furniture that are present in the study.

Contact

Matthys van der Merwe
Email: marsh@iziko.org.za
Telephone: +27 (0) 21 405 2880