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Mirror and pediment

On view

Mirror and pediment

Designer: Richard Upjohn (English, 1802 - 1878; active New York, New York after 1839)

Date: 1844-1846
Medium: Mirror:Black walnut, yellow-poplar, eastern white pine, glass, gilding; pediment: black walnut, unidentified secondary woods
Overall: 64 x 43 1/2 x 3 1/2in. (162.6 x 110.5 x 8.9cm), pediment: 37-1/2 x 55 x 9-3/8 in.
Credit Line: Gift of Mrs. Erving Pruyn
Object number: 60.170.1-2
Label Text
Provenance (the history of ownership of an object) can greatly enhance the importance of an article and can often help to identify an object's place of origin or, sometimes, its maker. A suite of library furniture--these pieces are a portion of the set--was made for Robert Kelly's home in New York City and was continuously owned by family members until it was donated to MWPI. Richard Upjohn served as the architect for the Kelly residence. Stylistic evidence and family papers indicate that Upjohn also completed much of the interior of the home, including the designs for the library furniture.

The designer of these pieces emphasized the overall mass of each object, and there is a restrained use of detail. Romanesque and Italianate architectural features are favored over elaborate applied decoration and carving.

An early twentieth-century photograph of the library in the Robert Kelly residence in New York City is in the collection of the Museum of the City of New York.