Designed by George Washington Maher (American, 1864–1926) Possibly produced by Louis J. Millet (American, 1853–1923)
About this artwork
Chicago architect George W. Maher was one of many Americans who embraced the English Arts and Crafts movement, incorporating into his residential designs an emphasis on simplicity, natural forms, and respect for materials. This silk and cotton Portière hung over a doorway in Maher’s James A. Patten house in Evanston, Illinois, built in 1901. The highly stylized and linear thistle motif created for this panel and other elements of the Patten house by Maher and designer Louis J. Millet helped achieve the decorative rhythm and unity that Maher believed was essential to the successful design of any residence.
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Cotton and silk, plain weave with pile warps forming cut solid velvet; appliquéd with silk and cotton, satin damask weave; linen and gilt-strip-wrapped linen satin weave; cotton and silk plain weaves; embroidered with silk, cotton, linen, and gilt-metal-strip-wrapped linen threads
204.1 × 119 cm (80 3/8 × 46 7/8 in.)
Purchased with funds provided by the Antiquarian Society
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Arthur C. David. “The Architecture of Ideas,” Architectural Record, April 1904. p. 377 (illus.).
David A. Hanks. “The Arts and Crafts Movement in America: 1876–1916,” Apollo, February 1973. p. 183-88 (illus.).
J. Allen. “The Artists and Craftsmen (1876–1916),” Arts and Fun/Book Section, Chicago Tribune, February 18, 1973, Cover (illus.).
The Antiquarian Society of The Art Institute of Chicago, The First One Hundred Years (Chicago: The Art Institute of Chicago, 1977), p. 210 (Illus.), no. 278.
The Art Institute of Chicago: The Essential Guide (Chicago: The Art Institute of Chicago, 1993), p. 238.
Christa C. Mayer Thurman. Textiles in The Art Institute of Chicago (Chicago: The Art Institute of Chicago, 1992), p. 116 (illus.), pp. 117, 148.
Judith Barter, ed., “Apostles of Beauty: Arts and Crafts from Britain to Chicago” (Chicago: Art Institute of Chicago), 2009, p. 173, fig. 21, cat. 88.
Princeton, NY, Princeton University Art Museum, The Arts and Crafts Movement in America, Oct. 17–Dec. 17, 1972.
Art Institute of Chicago, Feb.24–Apr. 22, 1973.
Washington, DC, Renwick Gallery of the National Collection of Fine Art, Smithsonian Institution, June 1–Sept. 10, 1973.
Art Institute of Chicago, The Antiquarian Society of The Art Institute of Chicago: The First One Hundred Years, Apr. 23–June 19, 1977.
Art Institute of Chicago, Agnes Allerton Gallery, A Selection of Fabrics from the 1880s–1940s from the Permanent Collection, Nov. 13, 1982–Feb. 15, 1983.
Art Institute of Chicago, Elizabeth F. Cheney and Agnes Allerton Textile Galleries, A Birthday Celebration: 100 Years of Antiquarian Society Textile Collecting 1890–1990, Sept. 11–Febr. 17, 1992.
Art Institute of Chicago, Elizabeth F. Cheney and Agnes Allerton Textile Galleries, Textile Masterpieces from the Art Institute of Chicago’s Collection, Feb. 17–May 2, 1993.
Art Instiute of Chicago, Prairie School: Design Vision for the Midwest, Oct. 14, 1995–Jan. 7, 1996.
Art Institute of Chicago, Regenstein Hall, Apostles of Beauty: Arts & Crafts from Britain to Chicago, Nov. 7, 2009–Jan. 31, 2010.
Art Institute of Chicago, Elizabeth F. Cheney and Agnes Allerton Textile Galleries, Modern Velvet: A Sense of Luxury in the Age of Industry, Oct. 21, 2016–Mar. 19, 2017.
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