Port of Bordeaux


Wallpaper Panels from Ports de France and La Gallerie Mythologique

Joseph  Dufour et Cie, Paris

Designed by Jean-Gabriel Charvet (1750-1829)

Original edition 1810-1815

Block printed Grisaille

Each panel width 22.5”

Joseph Dufour (1757-1827) trained in the wallpaper industry in Lyon and in 1797 opened his own wallpaper concern in Macon with his brother Pierre and the designer Jean-Gabriel Charvet. In 1801 Pierre left the company and the business operated as Joseph Dufour et Cie.  The company expanded rapidly , especially after the production of a set of scenic wallpaper entitled Sauvages de la Mer du Pacifique in 1806 an enormously popular series in Europe and America. The same year the Dufour company moved to Paris and established a wide clientele in Europe and America for both its panoramic sets and repeating wallpaper.

Dufour produced the Ports of France series, circa 1810-1815 as a set of 30 lengths depicting scenes from various port cities of France: Bourdeaux, Marseilles, Bayonne and Antibes. Pictured above are panels from the ports of Bayonne and Bordeaux.  In addition we have parts of the Antibes panels.

Our collection:

Port of Bayonne : panels 2-6 of a 6 panel scene. Total width 110.5”; height 79.5”  SOLD

Port of Bordeaux: panels 1-5 out of a 9 panel scene. Total width 94.5”; height 77.5”  SOLD

Port of Antibes: panels 3-5 out of an 8 panel scene. Total width 62.5”; height 79.5”  This group has cutouts for a mantel. SOLD

At Dufour, small rectangular handmade sheets were joined at the edges to form long rolls, which were later cut to the desired length (approximately 24 by 98 in). A toned, water-based ground layer was then applied by brush to the entire panel to act as an undercoat for subsequent printing. This light colored layer also served as the sky tone in unprinted areas. Designs for each color were carved on separate blocks, and as many as sixty were required to print a single panel.

Scenic wallpapers in the 1810’s and 1820’s were manufactured in quantity by Dufour and other companies and shipped regularly to America.  Americans referred to these in the period as “landscape papers”, “long-strip landscapes”, “scenery papers” or simply “views”. Archives of the Zuber company, another Parisian manufacturer of scenic papers indicate that before they hired an agent in New York in 1841, the company dealt with importers in New York, Philadelphia, Boston, Baltimore, Providence, New Orleans and Washington D.C.

Ephraim Gilman, an importer in Alexandria VA noted in his account book on July 3, 1819 that he had “1 sett paper hangings, View of Antibes, Bordeaux and Bayonne” priced at 35 dollars.

These panels were removed from an unknown house in the Washington D.C./Virginia/Maryland area in the 1950s when it was remodeled and modernized. They were stored in the attic of the decorator until her death.


Apollo and Phaeton 

Venus and Diana


Wallpaper Panels from  La Gallerie Mythologique

Joseph Dufour et Cie, Paris

Designed by  Jacques-Christopher Xavier Mader (1789-1839)

Original edition 1814

Block printed Grisaille

Designed by Jacques-Christopher Xavier Mader (1789-1839), the original edition of La Galerie Mythologique included six Empire style decorative panels, consisting of these two and Vengeance of Ceres, The Muses, The Judgement of Paris, and Time and the Seasons.


Apollo and Phaeton                width 63”; height 74”             SOLD

Venus and Diana                    width 41.5”; height 74”         SOLD




















































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Christopher H. Jones Antiques

105 North Washington Street · Suite 202 · Alexandria VA 22314

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