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Catalog Data

Manufacturer:
J.L. Mott Iron Works  Search this
Medium:
Cast iron, wood, paint
Dimensions:
32 1/2 × 67 1/2 × 19 in. (82.6 × 171.5 × 48.3 cm)
Style:
Naturalism
Type:
Parts
Origin:
New York, New York, United States
Date:
ca. 1850-1900
Period:
Victorian (1837-1901)
Description:
Cast-iron settee back in “Bleeding Heart” pattern. The top of the backrest has serpentine rail, and within the back is a symmetrical design of vines, likely depicting bleeding hearts. The bleeding heart flower was introduced to America and Europe in the nineteenth century. It was popular because of its fanciful blooms and decorative leaves and quickly became a garden staple of the Victorian era. Naturalism, the realistic reproduction of the beauties of nature, was a popular style in the Victorian era. Though it appears as early as the 1840’s in America, naturalistic designs continued to the 1900s. This was in part due to the influence of the natural sciences, and interest in nature and gardening, which spread through the upper and middle classes in the nineteenth century. Naturalistic designs incorporated floral, foliate, fruit, vegetal, and animal forms into furnishings and decorative objects for the home and garden. Popular subjects included grapes, cornstalks, ferns, Solomon seal or laurel leaf, passion flowers, lilies of the valley, morning glories, oak leaves, acorns, vines, and roses.
Naturalism, the realistic reproduction of the beauties of nature, was a popular style in the Victorian era. Though it appears as early as the 1840’s in America, naturalistic designs continued to the 1900s. This was in part due to the influence of the natural sciences, and interest in nature and gardening, which spread through the upper and middle classes in the nineteenth century. Naturalistic designs incorporated floral, foliate, fruit, vegetal, and animal forms into furnishings and decorative objects for the home and garden. Popular subjects included grapes, cornstalks, ferns, Solomon seal or laurel leaf, passion flowers, lilies of the valley, morning glories, oak leaves, acorns, vines, and roses.
Label Text:
In the nineteenth century, cast iron manufactories were able to achieve a high enough temperature to produce fluid iron that was poured into intricate molds of compressed sand. Once the iron had cooled, it was removed from the mold. Rough places and sharp edges were then filed away before the piece was bolted together. It would then be painted, varnished, galvanized, or bronzed several times to prevent rust. Since cast iron pieces were made in components and bolted together, numerous combinations were possible. Customers had the ability to select from a broad range of different finishes, components, and design motifs. Designs followed the trends of the time with natural forms, ornamental motifs pulled from historic revival styles, and complicated shapes.
Settees and benches were cast multiple sections, which were then assembled. Since cast iron pieces were made in components and bolted together; numerous combinations were possible. Customers had the ability to select from a broad range of different finishes, components, and design motifs. Designs for urns followed the Victorian taste for eclectic styles and borrowed Classical, Rustic, Gothic, Rococo, Renaissance, and Oriental motifs and forms. Pieces could be varied with the addition of a different leg, seat, arm, or back section. Ends could be attached to cast-iron backrests and seat grates, wood panels or boards.
Topic:
backrests  Search this
backs (furniture components)  Search this
benches  Search this
cast iron  Search this
outdoor furniture  Search this
Design elements  Search this
Garden ornaments and furniture  Search this
garden seats  Search this
parks (recreation areas)  Search this
seating furniture  Search this
Credit Line:
Smithsonian Gardens, Horticultural Artifacts Collection.
Accession number:
1984.044.a, b, c
Restrictions & Rights:
Usage conditions apply
See more items in:
Horticultural Artifacts Collection
Data Source:
Smithsonian Gardens
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/aq4b530ce08-5550-4003-bcf8-a2f689eec0c5
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:hac_1984.044.a__b__c