Image features gilt bronze furniture mount in the form of a lyre made up of foliage and centered by a torch. Please scroll down to read the blog post about this object.
Shiny, Sturdy and Sophisticated
Author: Molly Beegoo Gilt bronze furniture mounts have long been an element of decoration in French interiors. In addition to their use as ornament, they were highly functional. Their gilded surfaces added value and appeal to what would typically be a basic utilitarian purpose: protection for furniture. The mounts were generally fixed to the edges,...
Image features: New England autumn landscape with its fire engine-red barns, rustic wooden fences, billowing clouds, and white church steeples nestled among the distant trees. Burnt orange foliage decorates the sunny and bright rolling pastures. Please scroll down to read the blog post about this object.
American Splendor
Author: Janice Shapiro Hussain Aptly titled “American Splendor”, this textile captures the quintessential glory of the New England autumn landscape with its fire engine-red barns, rustic wooden fences, billowing clouds, and white church steeples nestled among the distant trees. Burnt orange foliage decorates the sunny and bright rolling pastures, signaling the crisp autumn air. The...
Image shows a nursery wallpaper with images from different rhymes. Please scroll down to read the blog post about this object.
Rhyming around the Nursery
Gazing at this carefully organized menagerie surrounded by creatures of all sorts and softly, scrolling vines, this wallpaper entices our eyes to flit from scene to scene. In one section, we notice a spider looming next to a small girl and in the next a mischievous cat plays a fiddle. As this continues, we slowly...
Antiquely Augmented Reality
Today’s fascination with alternate and virtual realities can sometimes feel entirely contemporary, firmly grounded in the technological innovations of the digital age. However, the desire for devices that alter our perception has a long—and dazzling—history. A “peep-show” is a visual tool that captivates viewers by creating an impression of highly illusionistic space. Utilizing a clever...
Image features the cover of book, The Gorey Alphabet. Please scroll down to read the blog post about this object.
The Gorey Alphabet
In the spirit of Halloween, a fun and spooky object in our library collection is a copy of The Gorey Alphabet  by Edward Gorey.  Edward Gorey (1925-2000), American writer and artist, child prodigy and high achiever has nestled his way into the hearts of those fond of dark themes, Victorian and Edwardian settings, and pen-and-ink drawings. The...
Image shows wallpaper printed with sun and moon motifs in tones of bright red. Please scroll down to read the blog post about this object.
This Sun Never Sets
Just as burning curiosity turns our heads heavenwards to investigate the mysteries of the sky, this wallpaper seizes our gaze through its fiery appeal, beckoning us to contemplate it’s piercing reds and swirling repeats. Eerie but whimsical faces peer back at the viewer, each sun has a small grin in one moment and a perfectly...
Image features a square ceramic tile with the large image of a fly seen from above, rendered in back and green glazes on a white ground. Please scroll down to read the blog about this object.
Pretty Fly for a Tea Tile
Author: Victoria Jenssen I grew up with Carol Janeway’s animal-themed tiles in my parents’ home, but only since my parents’ death at the turn of this century did I start researching Janeway’s career. My family’s amusing tiles were leftovers from my father’s career of the post-war 1940s when he crafted Janeway-designed hardwood frames for her...
Image features: Dark gray and orange fish swim up and down on a purple and light gray ground. Please scroll down to read the blog post about this object.
Natural Talent
Behold how black skimmers fish for their finny food. As the tide falls and the moon rises, a squadron of skimmers shimmers over the glassy cove, shallow-plowing the shallows with their razor-thin lower mandibles, scooping up minnows by the many from the mini furrows. It’s a little like seeing with a string, and you have...
The image shows a modernist floral wallpaper printed in a monochrome yellow colorway. Please scroll down for additional information on this wallpaper.
Who is Phyllis?
This is a modernist wallpaper from Germany, designed in the 1920s. It is printed in a more or less monochrome color palette which gives it a rather textural look. I was drawn to this design by the extravagant and very fluid design of the flowers which at first glance I thought were dancers in elaborate...