Biography: Talbert was a Scottish architect and designer, primarily known for his furniture design. As a designer, he bridges the gap between the Gothic Revival and Aestheticism. Born in Dundee, by 1866 he was working in Glasgow for various architectural firms. A move to Manchester in 1862, where he began to work for cabinetmakers was a seminal moment in his career path.
In 1867 he published the first volume of Gothic Forms Applied to Furniture, Metal Work and Decoration for Domestic Purposes, a sourcebook for manufacturers - was a kind of practical demonstration of Charles Locke Eastlake’s Hints on Household Taste (1864-66). The second volume of Gothic Forms was published in 1868. In 1870 he set up his own design studio in London. He designed for a number of furniture making firms including Holland & Sons, Gillows of Lancaster, and Collinson and Lock. In 1876 he published Examples of Ancient and Modern Furniture, Metalwork, Tapestries, Decoration etc. marking a change in aesthetic, away from the strictly Gothic designs advocated in his earlier book, towards a more eclectic borrowing from past styles. In additional to three-dimensional objects, he designed wallpapers (for Jeffrey & Co. among others), silks and carpets.