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Rich and Tasty
Vermont Furniture to 1850
Jean M. Burks, ed.; Philip Zea, ed.; Thomas Deneberg, fwd.

Shelburne Museum
2015 • 180 pp. 120 illus. (74 plates) 10 x 10"
Furniture / Decorative Arts & Material Culture

$29.95 Paperback, 978-0-939384-11-2

“The furniture is downright quirky. . . . The dramatic use of contrasting local woods, often veneers of curled, bird’s-eye, or tiger maple, black cherry, or yellow... [continued in Reviews below]”—Maine Antique Digest

A lavishly illustrated look at early Vermont’s high style furniture

Two landmark 1995 publications, The Best the Country Affords: Vermont Furniture 1765–1850 and Vermont Cabinetmakers & Chairmakers Before 1855: A Checklist, reintroduced Vermont high style furniture to decorative arts scholars, historians, and collectors. Equipped with this seminal knowledge, a small cadre of Vermont connoisseurs started scouring country auctions, adding signed and well-documented pieces to their private collections. Twenty years later, it is time to bring these pieces together and share them with the public. This catalog (and the accompanying exhibition that will run from July 25 to November 1, 2015) advances the understanding of Vermont high style furniture—from its features, craftsmanship, and economics, to its unexpected aesthetic innovations.

The authors identify key eighteenth-century Vermont pieces before covering a variety of topics, including clockmaking, chairmaking, the half sideboard, furniture from Woodstock, and furniture from Vermont factories. Seventy-five full-color photographs by acclaimed Boston photographer David Bohl and extended catalog entries display furniture from all over the Green Mountain State.

Arriving at a time of increased U.S. interest in regional furniture, this book will be welcomed by scholars and collectors, along with all admirers of fine furniture.

Click here for TABLE OF CONTENTS

Reviews / Endorsements

“The furniture is downright quirky. . . . The dramatic use of contrasting local woods, often veneers of curled, bird’s-eye, or tiger maple, black cherry, or yellow birch, with an occasional splurge for imported mahogany, provides a symphony of light and dark. Exuberant paint, swag inlays, and robust carving embody the kind of outspoken, progressive independence for which Vermonters are known.”—Maine Antique Digest

“Our understanding of early Vermont furniture remains a work in progress. With studies such as the present catalogue, however, a much better picture is evolving. It is recommended as the best general introduction to Vermont furniture currently available. Moreover, it is a must read for all specialists in regional American furniture.”

Vermont History


Historic New England Honor Book Commendation

JEAN M. BURKS is curator emerita at the Shelburne Museum. PHILIP ZEA is director of Historic Deerfield.

Tue, 16 Jan 2018 13:23:06 -0500