Saturday, June 3, 2017

Louis Comfort Tiffany - Blogging Through the Alphabet

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Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848-1933) was an American artist and designer best known for his work in stained glass. He made all kinds of beautiful things from glass - from huge stained glass windows to delicate jewelry. He was the first design director in the family company founded by his father - Tiffany & Co. He designed stained glass windows and lamps, glass mosaics, blown glass, ceramics, jewelry, enamels, metalwork, and even furniture. During the late Victorian period, people still wanted beautiful things in their homes, but they also wanted things to be useful. Tiffany understood this and created many pieces that are functional art. Functional art is something that is practical, like a lamp or a window, but is also beautiful.

Mosaic Columns, 1905, by Louis Comfort Tiffany
at Baltimore Museum of Art
Mantel Clock on a Mantelpiece designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany, c.1912
at Baltimore Museum of Art

Tiffany and Company - Necklace - Walters 572121
Diamond Necklace from Tiffany & Co.
Tiffany's first artistic training was as a painter but in 1875 he became interested in glassmaking and worked at several glasshouses. Along with fellow artists in the Associated American Artists group, he made designs for wallpaper, furniture, and textiles. In 1882, President Chester Arthur commissioned Tiffany to redo the state rooms of the White House. Later Tiffany opened his own glassmaking firm, Tiffany Studios. He used opalescent glass in a variety of colors and textures to create his own unique style of stained glass. He developed the "copper foil technique" of edging each piece of cut glass with foil and then soldering the whole together. Using this technique made a higher level of detailing possible in stained glass art pieces.

Willard Mansion Tiffany detail

using copper foil technique in a simple glass project

In 1893 he began a new company, Stourbridge Glass Company, which later became Tiffany Glass Furnaces. The company introduced the term favrile (from French, meaning "handmade") and later trademarked the name as it applied to all his glass, enamel, and pottery. Most of the company's production was in stained glass windows and Tiffany lamps, but also produced a wide range of interior decorations.

Tiffany Studios lamp Daffodil, designed by Clara Driscoll
Louis Comfort Tiffany was once quoted as saying his lifelong goal was the "pursuit of beauty". What do you think? Isn't his work truly beautiful?

Nicodemus Came To Him by Night, stained glass
window by Tiffany, in the First Presbyterian Church,
Lockport, NY
The Holy City
The Holy City, stained glass window by Tiffany,
in Brown Memorial Presbyterian Church,
Baltimore, MD
Baptism of Christ by Tiffany
The Baptism of Christ, stained glass window by
Tiffany, also in Brown Memorial Presbyterian Church,
Baltimore, MD

This post is linked at Blogging Through the Alphabet hosted by A Net In Time and Hopkins Homeschool. Join in to see what others are sharing related to this week's letter!

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Annette said...

He did some excellent work didn't he? Impressed I am.

Joanne said...

I just LOVE stained glass!

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