Cooper Hewitt Collection

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Cooper Hewitt Short Stories: Erskine Hewitt
In our last Short Story, we perused children’s books by great designers donated by the Kean sisters. This month, staying in the theme of sibling charity, we profile another Hewitt who, in his own way, made a substantial contribution to Cooper Hewitt: Erskine Hewitt! In managing his family’s estates, particularly those of his sisters Sarah...
Cooper Hewitt Short Stories: Carroll Beckwith and the Hewitt Sisters
In our most recent Short Story, we looked at the friendship between the Hewitt and Carnegie families, and how those relationships still shape Cooper Hewitt today. This month, a research mystery catches our eye. Recently, curatorial researcher Josephine Rodgers brought our attention to a lovely portrait of a woman given to the museum in 1931...
Life in the Lab: Conservation at Cooper Hewitt
Cooper Hewitt’s permanent collection includes more than 210,000 objects, which together span thirty centuries and reflect cultures from around the world. The Conservation Department’s main responsibility is the care and technical study of these pieces, to ensure their preservation for today and into the future.
Cooper Hewitt Short Stories: A Formidable Inheritance from a Gilded Age
In last month’s Short Story, we feasted on dazzling jewelry designs from Cooper Hewitt’s collection. This month, Sarah Coffin, curator and head of product design and decorative arts, introduces us to Mr. and Mrs. John Innes Kane, donors of some of Cooper Hewitt’s most important decorative art pieces. Margery Masinter, Trustee, Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design...
Cooper Hewitt Short Stories: Hewitt Sisters Collect Wallcoverings
In last month’s Cooper Hewitt Short Story, we buttoned up with a rousing exploration of the history of the button as illustrated by Cooper Hewitt’s expansive collection. This month, we delve into the uniquely Cooper Hewitt collection of historical and contemporary wallcoverings. Greg Herringshaw, the museum’s curator of wallcoverings, outlines three key areas collected by...
Cooper Hewitt Short Stories: A Manor of Collecting
In last month’s Cooper Hewitt Short Story, Matthew Kennedy revisited the Ringwood Manor guest books, pulling out delightful images that spoke to the summer season at the Hewitt’s country estate. In this month’s segment, Ringwood Manor historian Sue Shutte explores Cooper Hewitt’s extensive online collection to find enticing parallels to those items found in the...
Horizontal rectangle. Architectural ruins, open to the sky, used as setting for the Nativity group, seen near center, middleground. Rays of light rise from the figure of the Child. Shepherd kneels in foreground. Woman with bundle on her head, at right.
Cooper Hewitt Short Stories: Collecting Before the Alarm Clock Rings
This month in Cooper Hewitt Short Stories, Caitlin Condell, Associate Curator and Head of Drawings, Prints & Graphic Design at Cooper Hewitt, takes us to Italy to discuss one of the most significant contributions of European drawings in the early days of Cooper Hewitt's collection: the addition of the Giovanni Piancastelli collection.
Meet the Hewitts: Part Sixteen
In Meet the Hewitts Part 15, Au Panier Fleuri—possibly the first ever museum shop—flourished. The store sold objects created by students from the Cooper Union Women’s Art School inspired by designs in the collection of the Cooper Union Museum of the Arts of Decoration. In this snippet of “Meet the Hewitts,” we meet some students...
Meet the Hewitts: Part Fifteen
In Meet the Hewitts Part 14, the amusing artistry found in the Ringwood Guest Books was highlighted by Matthew Kennedy. Shopping is never out of season! This snippet looks at a wonderful new shop in the early twentieth century filled with artistic gifts and decor for the home. Created by the Cooper Union Museum for...