"It is all a matter of education, and we shall never have good art in our homes until the people learn to distinguish the beautiful from the ugly." — Louis Comfort Tiffany
The astounding success of Parisian goldsmith René Lalique was the result of a perfect storm of tragedienne, a rave for all things Japanese, and a world's fair. Lalique's luscious jewelry adorned the stage in Sarah Bernhardt's melodramatic roles of Théodora and Gismonde in the mid 1890's. In Paris Samuel Bing's new house of decoration, "La Maison de l'Art Nouveau," offered for sale both striking Lalique creations and Japanese decorative works of intense simplicity.
The Cleveland Museum of Art's fabled India Early Minshall Fabergé collection almost missed becoming part of the museum's permanent collection! In 1958, Director William M. Milliken, declined India Early Minshall's invitation to view her Fabergé collection as a possible gift to the Museum.1
The Museum Archives houses the documentary history of the museum. Much of this history consists of the written word. However, it also includes documentary evidence in the form of images. Pictures provide unique information that cannot be found in other types of documents. They are created to serve a number of purposes including augmenting the written record. In some instances, however, the only evidence of an historical event is photographic. Much can be deduced from images of people, places, and events.
George Cruikshank (1792-1878), one of the most prolific illustrators and satirists working in England, was praised as the "modern Hogarth"1 during his lifetime. He was a child of the eighteenth century and of the city of London. Born in the fashionable Bloomsbury district he was a member of the Cruikshank family of caricaturists and artists. His father Isaac was a well-known engraver and caricaturist. From an early age George worked at his side learning the techniques of etching, watercolor, and sketching.
Alfred Stieglitz, photographer, editor, writer, and gallery owner, was an integral figure in the development of 20th century photography and modern art in America at the turn-of-the-century. Born in Hoboken, New Jersey in 1864, Stieglitz became fascinated with photography at an early age. His father Edward, a prosperous wool merchant, was able to educate his children abroad. In 1882, Alfred enrolled in the Technische Hochschule in Berlin where he studied photochemistry.
"The most celebrated private press in the history of printing"1 was founded by William Morris (1834-1896) in 1891. At age 56, Morris was internationally known for the furniture, stained glass, wallpaper, and textiles sold through his firm, Morris & Co; for his many literary works; and for founding the breakaway Socialist League.
The growth of image collections in U.S. educational and cultural institutions has evolved since the early days of photography and the image collection at the Cleveland Museum of Art is no exception. Images have played a critical role in the educational and research functions of the museum. In its earliest days, lantern slides played a significant role in the history of the museum. As early as July 1914 Cleveland Museum of Art director, Frederic Whiting, used lantern slides to illustrate his talks on American Museums in order to publicize the new Cleveland Museum.
Education has always played an important role in the mission of the Cleveland Museum of Art. When the museum opened in 1916 one of the two spaces on the museum's ground floor, dedicated to work with children, was the Children's Museum. The goals of the Children's Museum were to foster a "love and knowledge of art,"1 stimulate children's imaginations, and provide visual representations of school lessons in design, history and geography.2 The space was filled with child-sized tables and chairs and stocked with paper and crayons to encourage drawing.
Pochoir, literally the French word for stencil, is both a centuries-old printmaking process and an important chapter in modern graphic arts. Pochoir came to refer to fine stencil printing in the last quarter of the nineteenth century. It reached its zenith in Paris between 1910 and 1935 where it was used to decorate everything from elegant fashion magazines and limited edition illustrated books, to greeting cards, wallpapers and advertisements.