The Museum’s American Wing houses a magnificent mahogany secretary-bookcase (ca. 1825–35) that, for sheer monumentality and grandeur, is one of the masterpieces of its time in New York. The design of our airy earrings is taken from the interlocking circle motif on the front of this splendid piece of furniture.
24K gold overlay. 1 3/4''L. Pierced, with gold-filled ear wires.
- 24K gold overlay
- 1 3/4''L
- Pierced, with gold-filled ear wires
Art HistoryThe secretary-bookcase's painted and gilded fretwork in imitation of brass inlay, the tight stenciling on the apron, the columns with gilded capitals, and the massive paw feet below gilded cornucopia brackets are typical of painted New York secretaries and pier tables. Its stately ornament, informed by classical antiquity, is in the Neoclassical style popular in American architecture and decorative arts of the 1820s and 1830s. Related to a signed piece by cabinetmaker Robert Fisher (active 1824– 37), this unsigned masterwork may have been made in his workshop as well.