Covered box

Horace E. Potter American

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 774

Horace E. Potter was a guiding force in Cleveland, Ohio’s vibrant community of Arts and Crafts metalworkers, and his was one of the most successful metalwork and jewelry craft shops in the Midwest. Although modest in scale, this small copper box with an enamel plaque depicting an ivy vine is a rare surviving example of Potter’s early work. Its style and execution reflect Potter’s training in Cleveland and his familiarity with the work of Boston’s Arts and Crafts metalsmiths and enamellists.

After graduating from the Cleveland School of Art in 1898, Potter spent a year studying at the Cowles School of Art in Boston. While there, he exhibited in the second annual exhibition of the Boston Society of Arts and Crafts. Potter went on to teach at the Cleveland School of Art and established a prolific shop, which he operated throughout his life with various different partners. He exhibited his work at Arts and Crafts exhibitions across the country and was named "master" by the Boston Society of Arts and Crafts in 1908. As a teacher, craftsman, and mentor, Potter influenced the work of numerous American Arts and Crafts metalsmiths and jewelers. This box showcases the creativity and skill that made Potter such a successful and influential artist.

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