Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Welcome: Stained Glass Window from the Mrs. George T. Bliss House, New York

Maker:
John La Farge (American, New York 1835–1910 Providence, Rhode Island)
Date:
1908–9
Geography:
Made in New York, New York, United States
Culture:
American
Medium:
Leaded opalescent glass, cloisonne glass, copper wire, paint
Dimensions:
156 x 96 in. (396.2 x 243.8 cm)
Classification:
Glass
Credit Line:
Gift of Susan Dwight Bliss, 1944
Accession Number:
44.90
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 700
John La Farge was Louis Comfort Tiffany’s closest rival in the use of opalescent, colored, and textured glass. This window, completed the year before La Farge’s death, was one of his most complex works. Commissioned in 1908 by Mrs. George T. Bliss for her house at 9 East Sixty-Eighth Street in New York City, it features a young woman in classical garb welcoming visitors while drawing back a portiere—a replication in glass of a Chinese embroidered textile originally owned by the Bliss family. The cloisonné technique of joining together many tiny pieces of glass was used to evoke folds in the figure’s gown. Decorative panels with garlands and Pompeian ornament frame the window. The work took over a year to complete, but La Farge considered it “the finest piece of glass ever made. . . . I am proud of it beyond what I can explain.”
Marking: stamped on perimeter verso: Jno La Farge / Patent 1880
Mrs. George Theodore (Jeanette Dwight) Bliss, New York, 1909–died 1917; her daughter, Susan Dwight Bliss, New York, 1917–1944
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