The J. Paul Getty Museum

Bed (Lit à la polonaise)

Object Details


Bed (Lit à la polonaise)


Unknown maker




Paris, France (Place Created)


about 1775–1780


Gessoed, gilded, and painted walnut; gilded iron; modern silk upholstery and passementerie; ostrich feathers

Object Number:



302 × 179 × 226 cm (118 7/8 × 70 1/2 × 89 in.)

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Object Description

A grand bed like this one was meant to stand in a deep niche in the bedroom of the main apartment of a palace or mansion. In the 1700s, visitors were frequently received in the bedroom, while the host or hostess was still in bed or at his or her dressing table.

Wealthy Europeans of this era spent vast sums of money on lavish textiles to decorate their rooms. Although the extravagant upholstery, passementerie (fringes, cords, and tassels), and hangings on this bed are modern, they replicate its original grandeur. To match the effect of other contemporary beds, curators and conservators studied photographs of this bed taken in the early 1900s, when much of the original fabric remained.


or Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord, fourth duc de Dino, 1843 - 1917 (Place Vendôme, Paris, France)
Source: Fowles, Edward. Memories of Duveen Brothers (London: Times Books, 1976), p. 168.

by 1899 - 1912/1913

Duveen Brothers, Inc. (London, England and Paris, France), and sent temporarily to Carlhian et Beaumetz, Paris.
Source: GRI Duveen Brothers Archive 960015, Box 56, London Stock Book no 6, fol. 183, stock no 17969 and Duveen Brothers Stock Photographs 2007.D.1, Boxes 523-530, Decorative Arts: Furniture: Upholstery/Tapestry Furniture, undated.

1912/1913 - 1923

Mlle. Gilda Darthy [sold, Galerie Georges Petit, Paris, May 18, 1923, no. 77, to F. Schutz, Paris]
Source: GRI Duveen Brothers Archive 960015, Box 94, Paris Sales Book no 1, fol. 170, stock no 2054 and Box 98, Paris Stock Book no 2, fol. 30, stock no 2054 / London no 17969.

1923 - after 1928

F. Schutz (Paris, France)


Possibly Espirito Santo Family (Europe)

- 1983

Private Collection [sold, Sotheby's, London, July 8, 1983, lot 96, to Barbara Piasecka Johnson.]

1983 -

The Barbara Piasecka Johnson Collection [unsold, Sotheby's, London, June 26, 1987, lot 76.]

1992 - 1994

Karl Lagerfeld (Paris, France) [sold, Sotheby's, New York, May 21, 1992, lot 88, to the J. Paul Getty Museum.]

"La Vie Parisienne au XVIIIe Siècle" (March 20 to April 30, 1928) (lent by Monsieur F. Schutz)
  • Musée Carnavalet (Paris), March 20 to April 30, 1928

Contet, Frédéric. Meubles et Sièges d'Art. Époques Louis XIV, Louis XV, Louis XVI, Empire (Paris: F. Contet, 1924), plate 10, illus.

La Vie Parisienne au XVIIIe Siècle, exh. cat. (Paris: Musée Carnavalet, 1928), no. 285, lent by Monsieur F. Schutz, p. 51, illus.

Fowles, Edward. Memories of Duveen Brothers (London: Times Books, 1976), p. 168.

Hafter, Daryl M. "Philippe De Lasalle: From Mise-en-carte to Industrial Design." Winterthur Portfolio 12 (1977), pp. 139-64.

Ponte, Alessandra. Il Mobile del Settecento: Francia. Documenti d'Antiquariato. (Novara: Istituto Geografico de Agostini in collaboration with Sotheby's, 1985), pp. 36-37, illus.

Chaignon, Marie-Jo. "Philippe de Lasalle, dessinateur et fabricant d'étoffes de soie à Lyon au XVIIIe siècle." Monde Alpin et Rhodanien (LE). Revue Régionale d'Ethnologie 2-3 (1991), p. 71, illus.

Disertori, Andrea, Massimo Griffo, Anna Maria Necchi Disertori, et al. Il mobile del Settecento. (Novara : Istituto Geografico de Agostini in collabloration with Sotheby's London, 1991), p. 114, illus.

Page, Amy. "Voulez-Vous Coucher?" Art and Auction 17, no. 4 (November 1994), pp. 146-151, illus.

Jodidio, Philip. "Le Monastére de Brentwood." Connaissance des arts 511 (November 1994), p. 132.

"Acquisitions/1994." The J. Paul Getty Museum Journal 23 (1995), p. 64, no. 4, illus.

The J. Paul Getty Museum Handbook of the Collections. 6th ed. (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2001), pp. 228-29.

The J. Paul Getty Museum Handbook of the Collections. 7th ed. (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2007), pp. 248-49, ill.

Bremer-David, Charissa. "A Case Study of a Lit à la Polonaise and Its Upholstery in a Brocaded Silk after Designs by Philippe de Lasalle." Furnishing Textiles: Studies on Seventeenth- and Eighteenth-Century Interior Decoration. Anna Jolly, ed. Riggisberger Berichte 17 (Riggsberg: Abegg-Stiftung, 2009), pp. 115-126.

The J. Paul Getty Museum Handbook of the Collections. 8th ed. (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2015), p. 302, ill.

Education Resources
Education Resources

Education Resource




Are you Sleeping?

Students learn to measure using their feet as the unit of measurement and sketch the pieces of furniture they measured.

Visual Arts; English–Language Arts; Math


Single Class Lesson

Dream Bed

Two beds show students that everyday objects can be works of art, and that artists design functional items that are often beautiful.

Visual Arts; English–Language Arts


Long-Term Unit