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Easel

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Easel

Date: c. 1885
Medium: Brass
Dimensions:
Overall: 71 x 23 1/2in. (180.3 x 59.7cm)
Credit Line: Museum Purchase
Object number: 2006.6
Label Text
Many art brass firms sold easels, used to display fine paintings in the well-appointed parlor. The amount of ornament on the easel determined its cost. Prices varied from as little as nine dollars for a simple tubular example to as much as fifty-four dollars for an elaborate model. This tasteful example includes a relief panel featuring a sketching putto surrounded by symbols of the fine arts. The panel conveys the utilitarian function of the easel, a decorative artwork upon which to display fine art.
Text Entries

A host of art brass firms offered easels, important accents in the well-appointed parlor. Prices, determined by the amount of ornament, varied from as little as nine dollars for a simple twisted-rope-patterned tubular easel offered by Manhattan Brass Company to fifty-four dollars for an ornate example offered by W. T. Mersereau & Company. This tasteful model includes a crowning silhouetted panel of a bird resting on a blossoming fruit-tree branch. A relief panel featuring a sketching putto surrounded by symbols of the fine arts (a stretched canvas, artist’s palette and brushes, easel, and sculpted torso) highlights a lower support stretcher. The panel conveys the utilitarian function of the easel, a decorative artwork upon which to display fine art.