One is not sure how to describe this man. Is he an artist, a poet, a carpenter, a joiner..... or maybe all of these!
This outstanding furniture piece which is unique to the mission, is the Genadendal Neo Classical Chair. A missionary called Johann Michael Peterleitner arrived in 1810, started a joinery and taught the local people the art of furniture-making.
The authentic features of this elegant, delightful and well-proportioned chair are: three back slats, two rails, the back is slightly curved, back legs sloping slightly away from the seat. It has got tapered legs, and a caned trapezium seat. The chair was stable enough that no stretchers were necessary for the legs.Sometimes the method of doweling was used to strengthen the joints.During those years the timber came from the Genadendal mountains where stinkwood trees were growing.
A couple of years ago this trade was revived by the museum with the craftsmen, the late Mr. Theo Duminy and Mr. S. Andries. The timber now used is blackwood or South African teak, to make the chair affordable.
If you are interested in this beautiful collector’s item William's Wood Poetry can re-create it it for you.
Please note: The chair is registered today and it is the museum’s intellectual property. You may not reproduce it without written consent from the Museum.