Flagg, James Montgomery – American Artist – Uncle Sam

James Montgomery Flagg (1877 to 1960)

James Montgomery Flagg, born in Pelham Manor, New York in 1877, is one of those interesting figures in history who actually did so much, but is only remembered for one thing! Flagg was a gifted artist, displaying a prodigy’s talent; he created his first magazine illustration at age 12, and by the age of 14, he had become a regular contributor to Life. He actively pursued training for [...] Click here to continue reading.

Ormolu – furniture


Ormolu, an 18th-century English term, is from the French phrase or moulu, with “or” indicating gold and “moulu” being a form of an old French verb moudre, which means “to grind up.” (This French term for this technique is bronze dore.) This idea of “ground-up gold”refers to the production process of ormolu, where high-quality gold is finely powdered and added to a mercury mixture and applied to a bronze object.

In reality, [...] Click here to continue reading.

Tumbaga – definition


The origins of the word ‘tumbaga’ are obscure and complex, but the general consensus seems to indicate the word is a Malay word that means ‘copper, brass.’ This is a little misleading, because tumbaga is actually a mixture of copper and gold. (Cesium is the only other ‘colored’ metallic element – all other metallic elements are achromatic, greys and whites.) Today, the word is typically used to describe materials from pre-Columbian Central and [...] Click here to continue reading.



The precursor of the modern-day slip, petticoats were a woman’s flaring skirt-like garment, often ankle length and fastened at the waist with draw strings, worn with a gown or jacket for added warmth or to make the outer skirt fuller. Wool, cotton and linen were fabrics for daily use, with silk damask often used with the finest gowns. In earlier periods dresses and gowns were open-fronted robes with petticoats designed to fill the [...] Click here to continue reading.

Gueridon – definition


Gueridon has unclear origins, but the French word has come to mean something similar to “decorative candlestand.” When the word originally came into use, it tended to refer to a small table with a circular top and the distinctive feature of a central figural support. The figures were usually Moorish or Indian. The form evolved and gueridon continued to be applied to three-legged tables with figural-carved legs, and during the Louis XV and [...] Click here to continue reading.

Pietra Dura Definition

Pietra Dura

Pietra dura (also pietre dure) is an Italian phrase, with pietra meaning “stone” and dura meaning “hard” or “durable.” While pietra dura is the preferred term (at least according to The Getty’s Art and Architecture Thesaurus at http://www.getty.edu/research/conducting_research/vocabularies/aat/), the terms micromosaic or Florentine mosaic are occasionally encountered. (Some find “micromosaic” to be a little objectionable, applying only to the “rougher” forms of the art produced for the tourist trade.)

Pietra dura is [...] Click here to continue reading.

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