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Arts of North America

Art created in North America includes objects made by native cultures of the present-day United States and Canada; paintings and decorative arts produced during colonial times; 18th- and 19th-century masterpieces; and the work of contemporary artists and photographers.

American, 1845 - 1914
c. 1905

27 x 29 5/8 inches

The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston

Museum purchase with funds provided by
Helena Woolworth McCann and the Winfield Foundation,
by exchange

Arts of North America

This entire table has been carved to resemble a lotus, an aquatic plant depicted often in Japanese art. The object has been treated with jin-di-sugi, a Japanese technique for artificially aging wood.

By the turn of the 20th century, Minneapolis was a prosperous community with its own thriving Arts and Crafts industry. The city´s leading proponent of "artistic" design was John Scott Bradstreet, whose cooperative craft center, closely modeled on the utopian ideals of William Morris, produced imaginative interiors for a select clientele. One of Bradstreet's most creative works, this tabletop is carved as a lotus blossom, with the pedestal and base as its stem and roots. The triumphant result is a combination of a traditional tea-table form, Japonisme, and American Art Nouveau design.