Decorative Arts and Design
On View: Luce Visible Storage and Study Center, 5th Floor
These silver objects, superb examples of the American Aesthetic Movement style, incorporate gold, copper, and brass details. This "mixed-metal" technique is borrowed directly from nineteenth-century Japanese metalwork. European guilds had guidelines prohibiting silversmiths from adding other metals onto silver. Here there were no such restrictions, so American silver makers specialized in the technique beginning in the 1870s.
Silver, copper, brass
3 x 8 1/2 x 8 1/2 in. (7.6 x 21.6 x 21.6 cm) (show scale)
On bottom: "1766 / [lion passant, anchor, gothic G] / STERLING / & OTHER METALS / N"
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. George J. Hecht, by exchange
Circular bowl with sloping, in-curving sides sits on short ring foot of 3" diameter. Lower portion of bowl finished with hammer marks; upper section of bowl has broad band of pattern comprising three rows of alternating squares with rosette or receding squares in interior; above this is narrower band of pendant semi-circular discs with rosette interiors, pendant palmette between each. Applied to front of bowl is a three-dimensional branch of cherries and leaves (which overlap rim of bowl) in copper except one cherry and one twig in brass; a small long-beaked bird with wings spread perches in branch. To the right of branch is applied copper insect; to the left of branch is applied fly of brass with copper wings. Traces of gilt on interior of bowl.
CONDITION: Normal wear; minor dents to cherries. Gilt interior nearly worn away.
Gorham Manufacturing Company (1865-1961). Bowl, ca. 1881. Silver, copper, brass, 3 x 8 1/2 x 8 1/2 in. (7.6 x 21.6 x 21.6 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. George J. Hecht, by exchange, 88.117. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 88.117_bw.jpg)
overall, 88.117_bw.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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