Object of the Day

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Flying into the World of Tomorrow
“Located on a larger tract of land in the transportation area, the aviation exhibit gives the visitor a realistic picture of a busy metropolitan airport. The dome-like rear portion holds  an invisibly suspended transport plane in full flight against a projected night sky.”[1] Published in the 1939 New York World’s Fair brochure, this description and...
1942-25-21-a,b
Gold Swag
Designated as the “Royal Porcelain Manufactory” during the mid-eighteenth century under the reign of Louis XV, the Sèvres Porcelain Manufactory needs little introduction as one of Europe’s most innovative and influential porcelain manufacturers during the eighteenth century. Eight years before Sèvres manufactured this cup and saucer in 1780, Louis XVI had become king, and the...
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A Feast for your Walls
In the spirit of the day, we present a French wallcovering that’s good enough to eat. A plump rooster stands atop a loaf of bread observing a jug of wine, a jar of cheese, a salt cellar and a bunch of turnip-looking root vegetables. The loaf of bread is stuck with a knife – perhaps...
Nightcap, 18th century, France
A Nightcap Before Bed
This 18th-century hat is called a nightcap, but it probably was not worn to bed. A man would use this cap to keep his head warm when he removed his wig, since a wig required short hair or a shaved head. A wig was proper attire for men of almost any status in 18th century...
Hoppenhaupt
The King Will See You Now…
The appartements in eighteenth-century interiors were organized hierarchically to differentiate between ceremonial, social, and private spaces. This hierarchy was reinforced through increasingly elaborate decoration as the designation for spaces grew more public. With this in mind, the decoration adorning the paneling, or boiserie, would have made guests aware of the types of social interactions which...
This is a Teapot and lid. It was designed by Marek Cecula. It is dated 1991. Its medium is glazed porcelain.
Memories of Bauhaus
One would not have thought that “fragment” and “porcelain” could co-exist as happily as they do in this teapot, from Marek Cecula’s “Fragment Series”.  Why fragment? Cecula (born Poland, 1944, working in New York) writes that, in creating the “Fragment Series”, he wanted to “substitute conventional functionality into a utilitarian sculpture.” In this sense, the...
92333_53ada9d27569f3cc_b[1]
Peonies and Price Fixing
A rather severe group of peonies, roses and other flowers grow with grape vines in a tangled mass on this wallpaper frieze of the late-nineteenth century. Dark outlines and blocky coloring causes the blossoms to appear stylized and two-dimensional. Instead of subtle shading, the illusion of depth is created by overlapping the floral elements. The...
Pleated fan, Europe, late 18th–early 19th century
Swift as an Arrow
The subject of this fan is an episode from the Ancient Greek myth of the Trojan War. Agamemnon has vowed to sacrifice his daughter Iphigenia to appease Artemis, whose wrath he incurred by killing deer in a sacred grove. This fan illustrates the dramatic moment when the goddess takes pity on the girl and at...
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Dining Rooms to Diamonds
Collegiate-gothic wood panels, a matching china cabinet stocked with warmly tinted salmon and blue plates, a wallpaper frieze evoking an endlessly rolling copse… A pleasing air of big-house formality and anticipated social gaiety pervades this dreamy circa 1909 scheme for a private dining hall. It’s one of the class assignments Izabel M. Coles (1890-1964) completed...