Photographer and display, exhibition, and stage designer. Born Birmingham, Alabama, June 10, 1910. Although Moore studied painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Chicago, he was mainly self-taught in design. His first display job was with I. Miller in New York from 1936-38. Moore became a display assistant at Bergdorf Goodman in New York in 1938.
He then became display manager at Bonwit Teller in New York in 1945, where he frequently collaborated with well-known artists of the Pop Art movement including Andy Warhol, Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, and others.
During this time, the profession of window display was gaining acceptance with the work of Moore and his contemporaries Henry F. Callahan at Lord & Taylor, Sidney Ring at Saks Fifth Avenue, and John R. Foley at Macy's among others.
Moore is best known for his highly acclaimed work as Display Manager and Vice President at Tiffany and Company, where he created innovative, imaginative window displays for almost 40 years, from 1955 to 1994, and was given carte blanche to create whatever he wanted.
Walter Hoving, Chairman of the Board of Tiffany, charged Moore with the following mission: "I want you to make our windows as beautiful as you can according to your own taste ... Above all, don't try to sell anything; we'll take care of that in the store." His designs were famous for combining and juxtaposing common, everyday objects with exquisite pieces of fine jewelry.
Moore selected each object to echo the shapes, forms, and textures of the others. In addition, he designed jewelry and silver objects for Tiffany, most notably, his 1988 "Tiffany Circus" which featured 28 minature circus animals and performers. Moore also worked as a freelance designer, from 1955, for Clarence House, Seagram Building, Delmar Shoe Salon, Madison Avenue Bookstore, American Museum of Natural History, Museum of Modern Art, Castelli Gallery, and Paul Taylor Dance Company, among others. In addition, he is credited with the design of the lobby of Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center in New York City. His work was the subject of the 1996-7 exhibition, "Moon Over Pearls, Gene Moore's Tiffany Windows and Beyond", held at The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City.
78 scrapbooks containing approximately 50 8" x 10" black-and-white photographs each. These photographs document Moore's work for Tiffany and Company from 1955-1994. All of the imaginative and inventive window displays created by Moore during his almost 40-year association with Tiffany's are presented in these scrapbooks. All of the photographs are dated by the designer in the lower right corner. The collection does not include any supporting documentation for these photographs. None of Moore's displays for other clients is included. Some photographers identified on prints.
Gene Moore Tiffany and Co. Photographs, 1955-1994, Archives Center, National Museum of American History. Gift of Gene Moore
Display of merchandise
2012.3091 (NMAH Acc.)
Unrestricted research access on site by appointment. Unprotected photographs must be handled with gloves