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tline3open  The best US silversmith of the 20th century?

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Author Topic:   The best US silversmith of the 20th century?

Posts: 1507
Registered: May 99

iconnumber posted 11-06-1999 10:51 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Brent     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have been trying to decide which of the 20th century silversmiths/silver producers is my favorite, and why. The more I think, the more I lean towards Robert Jarvie. Everything he made seems to have an innate elegance and a sure sense of style. Most objects DO pale in comparison next to one of Jarvie's masterpieces.

What do you think? Who is your favorite, and why?

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June Martin
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Posts: 1326
Registered: Apr 93

iconnumber posted 11-07-1999 06:43 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for June Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have to admit that I'm just coming out of the nineteenth century in terms of appreciation and knowledge. Your post prompted me to look up Jarvie to see some samples of his work. I can see why you admire him. His pieces photographed in the Chicago Metalsmiths book are truly beautiful. Is he well represented in some museums you could recommend or is his work mostly in private hands?

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Registered: May 99

iconnumber posted 11-08-1999 10:32 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Brent     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As you can see from the book, the best pieces are in the Art Institute of Chicago. Because his output was limited, there just aren't many pieces to go around. Anyone who wanted to collect Jarvie metalwork today would need a lot of money, and still wouldn't be able to accumulate much.

I think the reason Jarvie appeals to me is the influence of Charles Mackintosh on his designs. Mackintosh also influenced the designs of the Vienna Secession, which I love. You don't see many American pieces with Mackintosh/Austrian style; American art nouveau tends to be heavy on the flowers, and very few designers seem to capture the elegance of European metalwork. I guess it is no surprise that you find much of the best American silver coming from the European immigrants of Chicago.

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