Nelson, George – Designer – Herman Miller Co.

George Nelson (1908-1986)

George Nelson trained as an architect before joining the Herman Miller (furniture) Co. and becoming its design director for the 1950′s and 60′s. From this position Nelson became one of the most influential modernist designer’s in mid-century America.

Among Nelson’s furniture designs to have become 20th century design classics are the “Marshmellow” sofa (1956), the Ball Clock (1949), the “Slat Bench”, the “Sling Sofa” (1960′s), his “Bubble” and “Cigar” lamps (1952) [...] Click here to continue reading.

Bakelite

Bakelite

Scandal & the Story of Bakelite Bakelite hit the market in 1907, heralding the arrival of the modern plastics industry. Bakelite was the first completely man made plastic, as until then, plastics such as celluloid, casein, and Gutta-Percha all had as a base a natural material. It was developed by Belgian-born chemist Dr. Leo Hendrick Baekeland who started his firm General Bakelite Company to produce the phenolic resin type plastic. Bakelite was inexpensive [...] Click here to continue reading.

The Sarcophagus in Decorative Arts

The Sarcophagus in Decorative Arts

Derived from the Greek sarx, meaning flesh, and phagein, meaning eat, a sarcophagus is, essentially, a container for a body, much like a coffin or casket. Historically, sarcophagi were typically made of stone (though sometimes of other materials, such as wood or metal), with a relief-carved or pediment top, and designed to be above ground, and have been used by many cultures since ancient times.

An ancient [...] Click here to continue reading.

Marion and Donald Woelbing, Franklin Wisconsin – Provenance – Pook 4-2014

Marion and Donald Woelbing, Franklin Wisconsin.

Marion and Donald Woelbing were the solid citizen types that for generations have built American small businesses. They were a true partnership supporting each other in their diverse interests ranging from breeding and showing American Kennel Club grand champion prize winning dogs, to building with their own hands “Thorntree,” their home in suburban Milwaukee, to building an impressive collection of 17th and 18th century American antiques, to collecting [...] Click here to continue reading.

Collection of Margaret & Lawrence Skromme-Prov-Pook 10-11-2013

Collection of Margaret and Lawrence H. Skromme, Lancaster, Pennsylvania

Lawrence H. Skromme, P.E. was a lover of farms and farmers all his life. He was born on a farm in Roland, Iowa on August 26, 1913, the son of Norwegian immigrant parents Austin G. and Ingeborg (Belle) Holmedal Skromme.

Lawrence Skromrne graduated from Kelley, Iowa High School in 1931 winning an agricultural scholarship for his work in Future farmers of America. He graduated from [...] Click here to continue reading.

Semans, Mary Duke Biddle Trent – Brunk Provenance Note 8-2013

Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans (1920 to 2012)

An American heiress and philanthropist, Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans was the great-granddaughter of tobacco industrialist and Duke University benefactor Washington Duke. She was born Mary Duke Biddle on February 21, 1920 to Mary Lillian Duke and Anthony J. Drexel Biddle Jr. Her father was the former U.S. Ambassador to Poland and Spain.

Semans was raised in Manhattan, where she attended the Hewitt School in New [...] Click here to continue reading.

Collection of Joanne and Jeffrey Klein – Provenance Keno 1-22-2013

Collection of Joanne and Jeffrey Klein

Collectors Joanne and Jeffrey Klein enjoy the eclectic mix of American folk art, painted furniture and modern sculpture and paintings. They love the juxtaposition of modern with traditional ranging from symbolism to widely varying textured painted and weathered surfaces. Their appreciation of form, color and texture is exhibited in their collection of exceptional painted furniture, weathervanes, redware pottery, hooked rugs and wood carvings.

Information courtesy of Keno Auctions, January 2013.

Bent Family Collection – Provenance – Skinner July 2013

Bent Family Collection Provenance Note

Designed and furnished in the Mediterranean Revival Style, Quattro Venti is the last great private residence in Annisquam Village, a small fishing hamlet near Gloucester, Massachusetts. Quincy Bent, vice president in charge of production at Bethlehem Steel at the turn of the last century, built the summer retreat around 1912. His forebears purchased quarries in West Gloucester in 1820 and originally used the property, situated on the tip of [...] Click here to continue reading.

Ripley, Daniel C. – American Glassmaker

Daniel C. Ripley, glassmaker

The first Ripley & Co. glassworks was organized by Daniel C. Ripley, Sr. and several partners, including George Duncan, in 1866 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The company specialized in flint, cut, and engraved glass. Later, after Daniel Ripley Sr. died, Duncan bought out the partners and renamed the company George Duncan & Sons. In 1874 Daniel Ripley, Jr. established his own company, where he made pressed glassware, bar glass, and lamps, [...] Click here to continue reading.

Collection of Carl and Joyce Mueller, Tallmadge, Ohio-Provenance Note-Garths

The Lifetime Collection of Carl & Joyce Mueller, Tallmadge, Ohio

“For over one half century, we have collected – lived with – and enjoyed antiques”.

Carl spent over fifty years in the commercial radiator business started by his father in 1920. Joyce is a retired elementary public school teacher. Our first collecting passion was for Edwardian era antique automobiles and mechanical music (music boxes, automaton, orchestrion, etc.) Shortly after our marriage in [...] Click here to continue reading.

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