You are cordially invited to Furniture of the Victorian Era and the Gilded Age, a presentation by Dr. Roberta A. Mayer, Professor Emerita of Art History, at 11:00 am on Saturday, November 3, 2018 at the Margaret R. Grundy Memorial Library, 680 Radcliffe Street. Adjacent to the Library, the Margaret R. Grundy Memorial Museum has a rich history that centers on the Grundy family of Bristol, Pennsylvania, as well as a diverse collection of nineteenth-century American furniture originally owned by the family. This furniture is often referred to as “Victorian,” a general term associated with the long reign of Queen Victoria of England from 1837-1901. For furniture historians, however, American nineteenth-century furniture is represented by several distinct styles with competing origins in France and England. Although the Grundy family purchased their Bristol house in 1884 and remodeled in the Queen-Anne architectural style that began in England, it contains an eclectic mix of furniture that represents the waves of changing tastes over the course of a century. At the Grundy Museum, the influence of French taste is evident in Empire, Rococo Revival, and Renaissance Revival designs, as well as some imported pieces. English design ideas appear in Gothic Revival, Modern Gothic (“Eastlake”), and Aesthetic furnishings. In her presentation, Dr. Roberta A. Mayer introduces the various furniture styles that appear in the Museum and provides insight into when and why each became popular. Seating is limited for this free event; register by calling 215.788.7891 or online at www.grundylibrary.org. Following the lecture, free Grundy Museum tours are available at 1:15 pm and 2:30 pm; register in person or by calling 215.788.7891.
Roberta A. Mayer is Professor Emerita of Art History at Bucks County Community College in Newtown, Pennsylvania. She is author of Lockwood de Forest: Furnishing the Gilded Age with a Passion for India (2008) and Stella Elkins Tyler: A Legacy Born of Bronze (2004). In 2010, she received the United States Professors of the Year Award (representing Pennsylvania) from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching/Council for Support and Advancement of Education. Most recently, she was guest curator for “Becoming Tiffany: From Hudson Valley Painter to Gilded Age Tastemaker,” an exhibition at Lyndhurst in Tarrytown, New York (2018).
This program is offered by the Margaret R. Grundy Memorial Library in support of the PA Forward | Pennsylvania Libraries initiative. Libraries are key to powering progress and elevating the quality of life in PA by fueling the types of knowledge essential to success: Basic Literacy, Information Literacy, Civic and Social Literacy, Health Literacy, and Financial Literacy.