One of the “best kept secrets” during the New York City Antiques Week in January, as enthusiastically described by an attendee, was an early Sunday morning program presented at the Carriage House of the George F. Baker complex (headquarters for Classical American Homes Preservation Trust). The program – the Emerging Scholars Colloquium – presented by Classical American Homes in conjunction with The Decorative Arts Trust (DAT), drew a full house of collectors, curators, art dealers, and young professionals who gathered to hear the individual research projects of five young scholars in the field of art history and decorative arts.
Presentations reflected a range and depth of topics in the field, including:
Dinnerware for the Masses: Viktor Schreckengost’s Dinnerware Designs from the 30’s, 40’s, and 50’s
Catherine Acosta, History of Design and Curatorial Studies, Parsons School of Design
Making Sense of Carmontelle’s Chairs
Margot Bernstein, Department of Art History, Columbia University
The Shop of Robert Stewart: Work and Wealth in the Antebellum Natchez Furniture Trade
Candice Candeto, Winterthur Program in American Material Culture, University of Delaware
William Roberts’s “Excursion over the Mountains”: Landscapes “by the Pencil of a Virginian”
Katie McKinney, Americana Foundation Intern, Colonial Williamsburg
History in Stoneware: Depictions of the British Slave Trade on an 18th-Century English Punch Bowl
Daniel Sousa, Decorative Arts Trust Curatorial Intern, Historic Deerfield, Inc.
Opening remarks by Margize Howell, Co-President of Classical American Homes, followed by introductions to the speakers by Matthew Thurlow, Executive Director of The Decorative Arts Trust, highlighted the collaboration between these organizations dedicated to furthering the study and fostering public engagement in art and material culture. After the presentations, and closing remarks by Peter Kenny, Co-President of CAHPT, most of the attendees gathered next door at Richard Jenrette’s private residence – a Delano & Aldrich townhouse for a “Bloody Mary & Ham Biscuit” brunch . This was an opportunity to meet the speakers and enjoy a splendid brunch of Bloody Marys and ham biscuits graciously provided by Clifford and Ralph Harvard.
This speaker series and brunch, sponsored in part by the Wunsch Americana Foundation, is a benefit for the Decorative Arts Trust’s Emerging Scholars Program which supports the next generation of museum curators and decorative arts historians through grants, scholarships, lectures, and internships.