The term minimalism seems incongruous with the traditional idea of what an antique desk or cabinet looks like. Brown furniture made of oak, walnut and mahogany, be it Georgian or Victorian, conjures up an image of something dark, large and extremely heavy, and completely at odds in the light, square, uncluttered and often fairly pokey world of the modern apartment or townhouse.
Yet look at the simple straight lines of a Regency side table, the unfussiness of a bow fronted George III corner cupboard, the plainness of an Arts and Crafts oak refectory table, or the stepped effect of an Art Deco dressing table. These pieces would not look out of place alongside modern tubular and glass dining suites, urban chic fitted kitchens and white Italian cubed bedroom furniture.
These timeless pieces also dispel the myth that antique furniture looks wrong in a modern house. They remain as the constant as their contemporaries come and go. As white walls change to coloured walls, then to feature walls, the design and quality of workmanship of the minimalist antique transcends all efforts by owners to keep ahead of the game and remains the classic by which all others are judged. As modern design seeks to become more and more outrageous in its efforts to outmanoeuvre any semblance of traditionalism, it is the minimalist antique that serves as the constant reminder that it has all been done before.
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