Arts & Crafts Movement

February 01, 2012

Arts & Crafts Furniture @ Virginia Museum of Fine Arts

A great place to see, and photography Arts and Crafts furniture at close range, is the Virginia Museum of Fine Art in Richmond, VA; I recently visited VMFA to do just that. Their Arts and Crafts furniture is nicely nestled within the broad theme of VMFA’s Sydney and Frances Lewis Collection’s Art Deco and Art Nouveau collection located on the third floor in the Lewis Galleries. While there are only two rooms of exhibits, it is a well-rounded representation of American and British Arts and Crafts furniture. There are exceptional pieces from Gustav Stickley, Frank Lloyd Wright, and Greene & Greene on display.

September 03, 2010

Charles Rohlfs Furniture Exhibit @ The MET

I recently went to see the Charles Rohlf’s Furniture exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. This was my first opportunity to see his furniture in person and I learned much from seeing his work. My first thought was that pictures don’t do justice to how his carving accent his furniture, or the presence created by his negative-space manipulating fretwork. The exhibit featured a broad stroke of Charles’ work, including desk chairs, dining room chairs, rocking chairs, chiffonier, desks, plant stands, settees, trefoil tables, a case clock, log holder, fork and spoon salad servers, and his famous rotating desk.

December 12, 2009

Visiting Eastwood

Vibrant communities unite families, nurture harmonious industry with good labor relationships, and can create stability and balance for its residents. These types of communities promote lasting histories that make interesting places to visit. This is what I found on a recent trip to Eastwood located in Syracuse, NY. While my initial goal was to visit the city’s Arts and Crafts sites, I wound up discovering how the movement’s philosophies had influenced the city…or was it the city that had influenced the movement? I’m still not sure, but one thing is clear, Arts and Crafts history flourishes in Syracuse, and is linked directly to its community.

November 01, 2009

Meet Mike Danial and the Stickley Road Show

Recently I had the pleasure of attending the Stickley Road show. For the uninitiated, the Stickley Road show is a presentation about the history of, and construction techniques used by The L & JG Stickley Furniture company. The show highlights the expert knowledge, both as a woodworker and long-time second-generation employee of L & JG Stickley, of Mike Danial.

June 14, 2009

Visiting the Pope-Leighey House

I recently visited one of Frank Lloyd Wright’s “Usonian” houses-the Pope-Leighey house. Originally, built in Falls Church, Va; it was saved from a highway construction eminent domain bull dozer and moved to the grounds of the Woodlawn Plantation in 1964. Several years later, it was moved again, just a few yards this time, to facilitate repairs to its slab foundation. Usonian houses evolved from Wright’s desire to build an affordable house for the middle-class citizen. Built for a cost of $7000 in 1940, which various inflation internet calculators but at approximately $105,000 2009 dollars

March 04, 2009

San Diego’s Marston House

As with the Riordan Mansion, San Diego’s Marston House is also facing operational challenges due to the current economy. The Save Our Heritage Organization (SOHO), a San Digo based organization has stepped in to lead efforts to the Marston House open. Please read their call for help from Executive Director Bruce Coon...

February 14, 2009

The Riordan Mansion Needs Your Help!

Designed by Charles Whittlesey, who later built the famous Craftsman Style “El Tovar Hotel” at the Grand Canyon, this craftsman mansion is constructed using pine, native volcanic rock and stone. It features wonderful tulip art glass panels, and innovatively used photo negatives of Native-Americans as window decorations. The rooms are authentic and full of the Riordan’s belongings, including many outstanding pieces of original Arts and Crafts furniture. Riordan Mansion is also a great place to see Arts and Crafts furniture-especially some wonderful examples of Gustav Stickley and Harvey Ellis collaboration.

August 26, 2008

4 Great Arts & Crafts Destinations in the Twin Cities!

On a recent trip to Minnesota’s Twin Cities I discovered four great Arts and Crafts destinations-the Minneapolis Institute of Arts Museum, the Purcells-Cutt House, the Eastwood Gallery, and the Arbor Inn, which is actually located just across the river in Wisconsin.

August 02, 2008

A Great Stickley Book!

I recently visited the Winterthur Museum & Country Estate in Winterthur, Delaware. In addition to the 175 room mansion of the DuPont family, the Winterthur estate is also home to a major research library specializing on American culture. They have a very extensive collection of information on furniture-including Colonial, shaker, and Arts & Crafts furniture. It includes the third largest Shaker library in the country, and one of the best research collections on the Arts & Crafts movement in America. The library’s Arts & Crafts collection includes business papers from many companies, original periodicals, and glass-plate negatives.