Peter Hunt Decorated School Desk, French Letters and Sayings,

Peter Hunt Decorated School Desk, French Letters and Sayings,

Scarsdale, Westchester County, NY, mid 20th century

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size: 30½”H x 23½”D x 30”W • sold

This delightful and very charming decorated school desk is a wonderful example from the mid-20th century workshop of noted Provincetown, Massachusetts painter and designer, Peter Hunt (1896-1967). He became widely known for the vintage furniture and objects painted by him and in his workshop under his supervision, using the strong images and style of American and French folk art. Peter Hunt’s style became a sensation with socialites and “high-society tastemakers” according to Wikipedia. He designed and painted murals for the Cape Cod Room at the Drake Hotel in Chicago, sold through upscale department stores, wrote Peter Hunt’s How To Do It Book in 1952 (for sale on Amazon now for $847) and sold a painting to MOMA in 1941. Most interestingly, this desk seems to have been painted as a wonderful and very personal thank you gift to a family living on Marmaroneck Rd., Scarsdale, NY. Below is a full transcription and translation of the writings painted on the many surfaces of this very unusual piece.


Wood with an iron base and fittings, excellent condition.

 

Along top of desktop:

Qui se resemble – s’essemble   / Birds of a feather flock together

 

Letter painted on desktop:

Paris, le 1er JuinMes chere amis,Je pense si souvent a la charmante semaine passé a Scarsdale. Tout mes remerciements a Beverly pour m’avoir prêté sa chambre at son ravissant petit pupitre sur lequelle j’ais commencé mes mémoirs. J’espere que vous aimerez la case de champagne que je vous envoye. Buvez au present et a l’avenir buvez a notre amitié notre bonheur et nos amours et a la paix sur terre et aux hommes de bonne volonté, ou qu’ils sorent. Je vous envoye mes meilleur amities et mon tres bon souvenir.

Nicole du / de Poncel

Paris, June 1st

 

Translation:

My dear friends,I think so often of the charming week I spent in Scarsdale. Many thanks to Beverly for lending me her room and her lovely little desk on which I started my memoirs. I hope you like the box of champagne I send you. Drink now and in the future drink to our friendship our happiness and our love and to peace on earth and to men of good will, wherever they come. I send you my best regards and my very good memories.Nicole du Poncel

 

Envelopes, addressed to:

Mlle Beverly Adr…  / 3 Marmaroneck…  /  Scarsdale… USAM. et Mme. Walter Andres / 3 Marmaroneck Rd /  Scarsdale NY USA

 

Along bottom of desktop:

Le temps c’est del’argent  / Time is money

 

Scroll down for more French/ English sayings:

On the left side of the desk:

Jours d’ecole  / School days

 

One the front side of desk:

Toujours beau Toujour gai  / Always beautiful Always cheerful

 

On the right side of desk:

Jours d’ecole  / School days

 

On the back side of desk:

Demain on rase pour rien  / Tomorrow we shave for free (slogan from the French Revolution)

Inside of desk:

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