Object of the Day

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1992-155-3
Gallenga
In the early twentieth century, Italian painter and textile designer Maria Monaci Gallenga achieved international fame for her extraordinary costume and textile designs. Born into a family of prominent intellectuals and educated in literature and painting, Gallenga became fascinated with the artworks of ancient, medieval and Renaissance Italy as a teenager. In the nineteen-teens, she...
In this monumental scheme, the Maréchal's former wife and son (each of whom had predeceased him), flank the standing Maréchal, dressed in classical armor. The Maréchal gestures towards his wife, who stoops to greet him at the doorway (surmounted by family crest and pair of lions) of the family mausoleum; his son (also in classical military garb) kneels and kisses his father's left hand. The angel of death, holding a scythe, hovers above. Smoke emanates from censors on either side of the central group.
Behind Death’s Door: Augustin Pajou’s Tomb Design
This highly finished drawing is a design for a tomb by the French academician and sculptor Augustin Pajou (1730-1809). Dated to 1761, the drawing is executed with pen and wash and heightened with white gouache, and is signed and dated by the artist in the lower right corner. This tomb design is an innovative composition...
Cup with shallow bowl on raised foot, loop handle. Painted in interior of bowl with woman dressed in peasant costume, spinning with distaff; stylized border upper edge, thin gilded bands top and bottom edge of outside. Saucer round, slightly raised towards edges; painted with matching stylized border around center, two thin gilded bands bordering.
Porcelain for Everyone?
In 1918, amidst raging civil war and biting famine, Russia’s fledgling communist government was determined to communicate its values to a massive, largely illiterate and rural public.  It found one of many vehicles in an equally massive propaganda campaign. The government mobilized artists from across Russia to create images in a vast array of media....
2013-44-2
Too Sweet to Eat: Wallcoverings from Sugarcane
Founded by Robert Goldman in 1950, Carnegie Fabrics is a family-owned business with a commitment to quality and innovation which makes the research and development of sustainable textiles a priority. Xorel fabric, which is paper backed for use as a wallcovering, was introduced by Carnegie Fabrics in 1981 and was the first textile to address...
Textile, 2002-14-3, 1947
Campagna
Campagna, likely named after the designer Angelo Testa’s friend, Paul Campagna, epitomizes Testa’s design vocabulary. Designed in 1947 for Knoll Associates, Campagna utilizes Testa’s preferred linear and geometric forms, commonly associated with his Bauhaus training. The hard edges of the concentric rectangles in this textile, however, have been softened by their appearance of being almost...
Russian Constructivist-style costume design of grey-bearded old man in long blue robe and maroon coat and hat with black (fur?) trim. One up-turned hand is raised across figure's chest.
Costume on the Cutting Edge
This boyar may be old and wizened, but the costume he sports is cutting-edge. His cloak and cap seem to be cut from geometric patterns, in a modern take on medieval fashion. Boyars were high-ranking aristocrats who advised the princes of medieval Russia, but this one wouldn’t look out of place in a cubist or...
Cut and entwinned ribbon silver brooch, with basse-taille enamel.
A Pretty Thought in a Variety of Shapes
In summer, when weddings are frequent, the thought of objects given in affection or love, makes a visit to the jewelry collection seem appropriate. This heart-form brooch is one of a group of jewelry by Charles Horner (English, 1821-1896) given to the Museum in December. Horner (English, 1821-1896) was an actual silversmith, watchmaker and enamellist...
2003-2-1
Fields of Floral Beauty
Flower Bed serves as a parable about good and evil involving furry black and white animate forms and chronicles their struggle against adversity. One of Hancock’s characters, Homerbuctus, has an eye for beauty but knows no moderation. His insatiable appetite leads him to take the flowers as his “mistresses”. Flower Bed wallpaper expresses this abundance...
Fiber and air
Fiber and Air: A Net by Joanne Segal Brandford
“My ordinary materials are fiber and air,” explained textile artist and scholar Joanne Segal Brandford in a university lecture in 1993, and it’s true. Whether made of coarse bands of rattan or fine strands of nylon, her nets, fabrics, and baskets seem to rest lightly in space. In its most basic form, a net is...