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Maker: Gorham Manufacturing Company (active Providence, Rhode Island, 1831-present)

Date: 1882
Medium: Patinated copper, silver, silvergilt
Overall: 13 x 6in. (33 x 15.2cm)
Inscribed: Marked on underside in impressed mark: "[anchor in shield]/ Gorham Co./ F18/O"
Credit Line: Museum Purchase by exchange, in part with funds from Mrs. John W. Calder, Mr. and Mrs. J.V. Owens, Mrs. David Bryant, and Mrs. William Swackhamer.
Object number: 2003.28
Label Text
Many American consumers who viewed international exhibitions were awestruck by the Japanese metal artisans' use of lesser expensive metals to create luxury wares. To imitate Japanese goods, American manufacturers adopted the use of materials such as copper, created textured and colored finishes, and relied on asymmetrical naturalistic ornamentation seen throughout Japanese art.

In 1881 Gorham was among the first American firms to market an adventuresome line of patinated copperwares successfully. The body of this coffeepot was formed by hand hammering then colored by a chemical process. The form of the coffeepot replicates Turkish-style examples, but the applied mixed-metal decorations are inspire by Japanese art. According to the Gorham firm, the imaginative and skillful treatment of base metals in the goods produced by silver manufacturers was "greeted by the Trade with the most hearty sense of appreciation."