The history of American silver offers invaluable insights into the economic and cultural history of the nation itself. Published here for the first time, the Art Institute of Chicago’s superb collection embodies innovation and beauty from the colonial era to the present. In the 17th century, silversmiths brought the fashions of their homelands to the colonies, and in the early 18th, new forms arose as technology diversified production. Demand increased in the 19th century as the Industrial Revolution took hold. In the 20th, modernism changed the shape of silver inside and outside the home.
This beautifully illustrated volume presents highlights from the collection with stunning photography and entries from leading specialists. In-depth essays relate a fascinating story about eating, drinking, and entertaining that spans the history of the Republic and trace the development of the Art Institute’s holdings of American silver over nearly a century.
The Art Institute of Chicago, 2017 266 pages, 9 1/2 x 12 169 color illus. + 151 b/w illus.