About This Artwork

American
New York

Card Table, 1755/90

Mahogany with tulip poplar, white oak, and white pine
69.9 x 88.3 (open) x 87.6 cm (27 1/2 x 34 3/4 x 34 1/2 in.)

Restricted gifts of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Brown and Mrs. Potter Palmer IV; the Robert Allerton and Bessie Bennett funds; Estate of Annie Dunlop in memory of Annie Wisner, 1973.564

When not in use, this card table was meant to be placed against a wall. When needed, a third “swing” leg at the back of the table was placed at a perpendicular angle to support the open top. Opened, the table reveals four inset squared corners where candlesticks were placed. The recessed ovals held playing pieces known as fish because of their shape. The pieces were usually made of mother-of-pearl or ivory, and were kept in a small, secret drawer in the rear of the table.

— Permanent collection label

Exhibition, Publication and Ownership Histories

Publication History

Milo M. Naeve, Milo M. Naeve, Identifying American Furniture (Nashville, American Association for State and Local History, 1981), p. 22, ill. no. 30.

Milo M. Naeve, Milo M. Naeve, Identifying American Furniture 2nd ed. (Nashville, American Association for State and Local History, 1989), p. 12, no. 29.

Frank Levy, “The Most Opulent Form: A Structural Analysis of New York Five Legged Card Tables,” (M.A. thesis, University of Delaware, 1991), no. 27.

Milo M. Naeve, Identifying American Furniture, Colonial to Contemporary, 3rd ed. (American Association for State and Local History/AltaMira Press, 1997).

Judith A. Barter et al, American Arts at The Art Institute of Chicago: From Colonial Times to World War I (Chicago: The Art Institute of Chicago, 1998), pp. 90-91, no. 28.

Ownership History

Ginsburg and Levy, Inc., New York, (?). John Walton, New York, (?). Charlotte Pickman Gertz, New York, 1973; sold to the Art Institute of Chicago 1973.




Interpretive Resources

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