The Metropolitan Museum’s elegant earrings are based on a design by Meta K. Overbeck (American, active ca. 1914–1933), a supervisor of the workshops at Tiffany & Company from 1914 to 1933. Louis Comfort Tiffany (American, 1848–1933) enlisted Overbeck to oversee the production of his groundbreaking designs, as he transformed jewelry from ornament to art. Her designs were characterized by a high degree of finish, stylized filigree, and the stones themselves—their colors, shapes, and textures— to make an elegant statement. One of her designs, from a sketch in The Jewelry Design Book
, has been adapted for these delicate dangling earrings.
Produced in cooperation with The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art, Winter Park, Florida.
24K gold overlay, made with SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS. 1 1/2''L. Pierced, with gold-filled wires.
- 24K gold overlay
- MADE WITH SWAROVSKI® ELEMENTS
- 1 1/2''L
- Gold-filled wires
Art HistoryLouis Comfort Tiffany (American, 1848–1933) was knowledgeable about jewelry trends through art periodicals, international expositions, and, of course, his father's firm, Tiffany & Company—to which he was appointed art director upon his father's death in 1902. The son's earliest jewelry designs were exhibited at the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Exposition in Saint Louis, where they garnered attention and favorable press by the art critics of the period. Beginning in 1907, jewelry designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany and fabricated under his direction was made at the workshops of Tiffany & Company. Between 1914 and 1933, Meta K. Overbeck (American, active ca. 1914– 1933), one of his principal designers, supervised his jewelry line and its fabrication. Under Overbeck, the new jewelry displayed a pronounced shift in style and workmanship. Explicit replications of forms from nature were replaced by designs that relied on a high degree of finish, on stylized filigree, and on the stones themselves —their colors, shapes, and textures—to make an elegant bold statement. Fortunately, a book of Overbeck’s jewelry designs survives in the collection of The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art in Winter Park, Florida.