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 Spectacular Hollywood Producer Art Deco Desk 1930's Harry Cohn
This is a great business! Every now and then something totally unique comes my way. Not always as it is presented. I am so excited to have completed this desk. It has been a project we've been working on now for well over 7 months. This desk was sold to me in January. It made its way to me from Seattle. This is the story I was told. This desk owned by the one of the most famous Hollywood producers from the 1930's Harry Cohn, part owner of Columbia pictures. The person I purchased it from had been given a photo but at last could not find the original photo showing Mr. Cohn at this desk. He did not want to do the research and figured I'd be a better custodian for a desk like this. If you check out all the photos enclosed, you can see the original desk I bought. It was an oval shaped racetrack executive desk! I liked the shape so I bought even without any really proof. (click on this link to see photos of the restoration) click here 

The desk arrived and to my dismay, the sides, which I thought were wood, had been added at a later date. They were metal with a covering made to look like wood. We took the side panels off and found a treasure hiding behind them, something I could not have imagined.

The desk you see here has been restored, repaired, enhanced and designed to correspond with the design we believe was originally intended from its inception in 1930 (the date is also inscribed in one of the drawers: 2-18-30, additionally there are names: Mad-5, 19105-F.N.P. and Sunset). Maybe some Hollywood historian might be able to shed some light as to what these names, and numbers truly mean (stock numbers/movie sets)? Looking through the book "Screen Deco" I did find a desk that could possibly be this piece, from a movie called, " Crimes Without Passion 1934 Claude Rains and Esther Dale). If this is the desk, It appears to have been re-fitted, the outside "bones" had been shaved down in order to accommodate a more modest looking design. As you can see from our interpretation of the restoration, this desk had to originally be very modernistic, edgy and a bit "over the top". During this period of Hollywood movie making, the films using the new "Art Deco" sets were probably the most spectacular interpretations of high style art deco anywhere in the world and some might even say this was The Golden Age of Hollywood.

In any event, we know it was built in 1930 and the design was originally black in most parts, since we found a lot of black over-spray when we took the top off to analyze the piece helping to determine how to restore it. We are kind of like archeologists, taking our ideas from the clues that were left behind. We did not change anything in the shape, the nicely carved black slats on the side or all original. Additionally, the top and the repeated wood base is also original. We did add the silver bands, which I assume were removed originally in order to accommodate the metal shell that was installed sometime later. We located some original art deco/bakelite handles and kept the top black which is now finished with a new piece of tempered glass including polished pencil edge. Maybe the desk was in the back lot and Harry asked his people for a desk, so the decided to make something a little more suitable for a Hollywood executive. In any case, this is our interpretation of what it could have been originally, we spent an awful lot of time on this piece and I have to say it is one of the most spectacular desks I've seen in all my "deco days"! It will take your breath away. It certainly does belong to the Hollywood era and I can certainly imagine that is how its life most likely began.

The lucky person who will purchase this piece, having the right environment will no doubt inherit the history and "mojo" that I know lives inside this piece. 


83" W x 35" D x 32" T

excellent, just restored
height: 32 in.
depth: 35 in.
width/length: 6 ft. 11 in.
Number of items: 1
Materials/Techniques: wood/metal/bakelite
Creator: unknown
provided by Art Deco Collection
Art Deco Collection
1632 Market Street Suite A
San Francisco, CA, 94102
Phone: 415 255 1902
E-Mail: info@artdecocollection.com

Dealer Ref. : 1543
Ref. : U1108138714350

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