Friday, January 5, 2018

The Jazz Age

Today my cousin Gail and I braved the Arctic temperatures and went to the Cleveland Museum of Art to see their special exhibit, "The Jazz Age".   Co-organized by the Cleveland Museum of Art and the Cooper Hewitt Design Museum in New York, this is the first major exhibition to portray American tastes in art and design during the "Roaring Twenties" and the early 1930s.  In the years after World War I, the prosperity of the United States created a demand for luxury products, and there was a flow of goods and ideas between the U.S. and Europe.  The exhibit displays decorative arts, fashions, furniture, jewelry, and even automobiles from the era of "Art Deco".

Here is a small sample of the objects on display...

My cousin poses by a 1925 Rolls Royce in the museum atrium.  Because of increased demand from the "nouveau riche" of the United States, Rolls Royce built a factory in Springfield, Massachusetts, to assemble cars for the American market.

This beautiful corner cabinet of mahogany was manufactured in Paris in 1923.

This French armchair was made in 1923.  The fighter plane on the upholstery celebrates the Allied victory in World War I.

This very modern, red lacquer dressing table was retailed by the New York department store Lord & Taylor in 1929.

This armchair with geometric contours was featured in Macy's 1928 "Arts in Industry" exhibition.

A sideboard manufactured by the Grand Rapids Chair company in 1928.

This console table and mirror were manufactured in 1930, right here in Cleveland, Ohio, by the Rose Iron Works.

Another beautiful creation of the Rose Iron Works is this wrought iron screen with brass and gold and silver plating.

This magnificent Bacarat crystal chandelier was made for a pavilion at the 1925 Paris Exposition.

Here are two details from large mural panels which were once part of the proscenium arch at the Ziegfield Theater in New York.

A "Whirlwind Vase" created by the French company Lalique in 1925.

A "Rhythm Vase" created in 1929 by the Swedish glassmaker Orrefors. 

A "Gazelle Bowl" manufactured in 1935 by the Steuben Glass Works of Corning, New York.

This 1926 necklace from Tiffany and Company of New York is made of platinum, pearls and diamonds.

A diamond and platinum brooch made in 1920 in Paris.

A 1921 "Mystery Clock" from Cartier Jewelers.  It is called a "Mystery Clock" because the hands appear to be floating.

This oil painting by William Auerbach-Levy is a portrait of George Gershwin, the composer whose popular songs and symphonic music incorporated jazz rhythms.

An oil painting by Rachel Hartley of New York City's Chrysler Building, which for a short time was the tallest building in the world.

An elegant, woman's cape from 1925 made of mink, silk and glass beads.

The scandalous flapper dresses of the Roaring Twenties were the first with a hemline above the knee.

A 1929 dress designed by Coco Chanel.

Finally, yours truly posing next to a 1937 Cord Phaeton Roadster.

Another outstanding exhibit presented by our Cleveland Museum of Art!


  1. Love that sideboard desk. And I *really* want to visit the Cleveland Museum of Art.

    1. Our museum is not nearly as large as places such as the Metropolitan Museum in New York... although it would still take a very long day to see everything there. It is considered one of the finest in the country.
      Let me know if you ever plan a trip up here.