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Sofa with Stenciled Design

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Attributed to
Lockwood de Forest
American (1850 - 1932) Primary

Sofa with Stenciled Design

ca. 1894
Wood, paint, upholstery

42 in. x 73 1/4 in. x 30 3/4 in. (106.68 cm x 186.06 cm x 78.11 cm)

Bryn Mawr College
Accession Number: 2012.4.5
Geography: North and Central America, United States
Classification: Furnishings and Furniture; Furniture
Culture/Nationality: American
Collection: Deanery Collection
Description: Lockwood de Forest (1850-1932) was an American-born artist who is most well-known for his landscape painting and interior design, as well as for his partnership with Louis Comfort Tiffany and the Associated Artists in New York. As a young man he travelled frequently with his family, touring Europe, North Africa, and parts of the Middle East before the age of 25, but his greatest interest was in the decorative arts of Eastern India. De Forest spent many years in Ahmedabad overseeing a workshop where craftsmen produced carved furniture, tracery panels, jewelry, and textiles for export to New York City.

This large, oak wood sofa is stenciled in black paint in a curvilinear floral design, similar to other stencil work attributed to Lockwood de Forest found on furniture and furnishings as well as ceilings, walls, and floors throughout the Deanery. The sofa is sturdy and functional, notably different than other furnishings de Forest supplied for the Deanery yet still fitting the Arts and Crafts aesthetic he maintained in his interior design for the building.

Keywords Click a term to view the records with the same keyword
This object has the following keywords:
  • art furniture - Term applied in the 1860s to furniture produced by firms which employed leading designers and architects. Designs tended toward simple forms with hand-carved and painted decoration.
  • paint - Any dispersion of pigment in a liquid binder. Paint is applied with a brush, roller, sprayer, or by dipping and dries to form a decorative or protective film.
  • sofas - Long, upholstered seating objects with a back and two ends, and primarily used for sitting rather than reclining. Distinct from "couches (reclining furniture)" which have a back support and one end and are primarily used for reclining rather than sitting. The term "sofa" was first used in France at the end of the 17th century as an alternative for canapé. The terms sofa and settee are virtually interchangeable in 20th-century usage but there is a distinction between the two; a sofa is generally completely upholstered.
  • stenciling - Method of creating multiple copies of a design by cutting it out of a thin yet durable sheet, such as thin brass or plastic, and dabbing, pouncing, spraying, or rubbing a color substance through the openings. For printing from stencils, use "stencil printing."
  • upholstery - Refers to the fixed soft coverings for furniture, especially seating and reclining furniture. Originally referred to all the textile components of a room supplied by upholsterers, including wall hangings, bed hangings, window curtains, and table coverings.
  • wood - The principal tissue of trees and other plants that provides both strength and a means of conducting nutrients. Wood is one of the most versatile materials known.

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Additional Image 2012.4.5_BMC_f_2.jpg

Exhibition List
This object was included in the following exhibitions:
  • Room Diarama in the American Galleries The Philadelphia Museum of Art , Jun 24, 1953 – Apr 18, 1990

Bibliography List
The following Bibliography exist for this object:
  • Roberta A. Mayer, Lockwood De Forest University of Delaware Press. Newark, NJ, 2008
    Page Number: 174, Figure Number: 156

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<ref name=BMC>cite web |url= |title=Sofa with Stenciled Design |author=Bryn Mawr College Library Special Collections |accessdate=6/9/2023 |publisher=Bryn Mawr College</ref>

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