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"Gem Bamboo Triplicate" Folding Mirror

Decorative Arts and Design

CULTURE American
MEDIUM Wood (probably maple), glass, metal, printed paper
DATES Patented April 19, 1887
DIMENSIONS Height: 13 in. (33 cm) Width (closed): 11 in. (27.9 cm) Width (open): 26 in. (66 cm)  (show scale)
MARKINGS At top edge of rear is affixed metal label: "P:WIEDERER & BRO. / GEM BAMBOO TRIPLICATE / PATENTED APRIL 19,1887."
CREDIT LINE H. Randolph Lever Fund
CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Three-panel folding mirror; wood (probably maple), glass, metal, printed paper. Mirror: wood frame turned to resemble bamboo (faux bamboo); vertical and horizontal members cross at four corners, glass, printed paper. Rectangular frame which encloses a panel (mounted in white metal) with a Japanese-inspired printed subject: a bamboo stalk crosses the panel from center bottom to upper right on the stalk is a bird wearing a shirt, trousers, and hat clutching a swallow by the tail; this is surrounded by various foliage, a butterfly, two other swallows, two flies and a beetle; gold, green, blue, yellow, and peach colors. At left edge of panel is a shaped clasp; at right edge, hinges; on lower edge of panel is a hinged metal foot to prop up panel. Panel edges open to reveal mirror on reverse. Inside frame is another panel (mounted in white metal) printed with a bamboo stalk going from lower center to upper left, snail and grasshopper at top, in front of a landscape with pool of water in which stand two herons; gold, green, blue, yellow, and peach colors. At right edge of panel is blue ribbon to lift panel; at left edge panel is hinged; at bottom edge is a hinged foot. Panel hinges open to reveal mirror on reverse and beveled mirror in central panel. Rear of mirror backed with black leatherette, framed with quarter-round wood. At top edge are two eye hooks and a chain for hanging. Made by the firm under the name "Gem Bamboo Triplicate." CONDITION: Bamboo turnings chipped and worn on edges. Front panel: Some scratches, wear, discoloration; flaking along left edge, especially near clasp. Inner panel: small area of flaking, left edge, near rocks, ribbon frayed. Central mirror may be a replacement.
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
CAPTION Wiederer and Brother. "Gem Bamboo Triplicate" Folding Mirror, Patented April 19, 1887. Wood (probably maple), glass, metal, printed paper, Height: 13 in. (33 cm). Brooklyn Museum, H. Randolph Lever Fund, 85.12.2. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, CUR.85.12.2.jpg)
IMAGE overall, CUR.85.12.2.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2010
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