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Exhibition

Inspiring Design: The Book Collection of Tiffany & Co.'s Edward C. Moore

Through October 22
Free with Museum admission

Edward C Moore (1827–1891) was the head of silver design and manufacturing for Tiffany & Co. from the mid-nineteenth century until his death in 1891. Throughout his career, he amassed a large collection of art objects from diverse cultures to educate and inspire the firm’s silver design work. This collection and the silverwork it inspired is the subject of the current exhibition, Collecting Inspiration: Edward C. Moore at Tiffany & Co., which is on view in the special exhibition galleries nearby.

Coincident with his art collecting, Moore amassed an impressive library. In addition to over two thousand objects, his estate donated a library of more than 350 titles—roughly five hundred volumes in total—to The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The contents of the library reflect his belief that design education and inspiration could come from every medium. His library and collected objects provided the staff at Tiffany access to works of art, cultures, and ideas far beyond the temporal and geographic boundaries of New York City.

His interests were wide ranging and his library covers topics related to his collecting, as well as architecture and archeology, art education, home decoration and furniture, lace and textiles, book binding, illuminated manuscripts, and color theory. The books also evince a deep interest in the process of production of both ceramics and glass. He also subscribed to contemporary periodicals and journals that demonstrate he was knowledgeable about and engaged in the exhibitions at the nineteenth-century world’s fairs in Europe and America.


The objects on display will be available for consultation in our Reading Room at the conclusion of the exhibition. Information on using the library is here.

Marquee: George Ward Nichols (1831-1885). Art Education Applied to Industry 1877, Harper & Brothers, publishers. United States, New York. Illustrated book, 211 pages, [1] leaf of plates, H. 24 cm. Thomas J. Watson Library (159 N52).

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