Erik Magnussen Designed for Gorham 'Modern American' Art Deco Sterling Silver Goblets - 8, Providence, RI, 1928
These important goblets are very rare examples of American art deco silver. Based on 'skyscraper' designs, the round, stepped base creates a dramatic foundation for the conical body. Bold form is accentuated by deeply incised vertical and horizontal lines with a single incised line around the rim. The shapes, design and scale are exceptional. According to a report by Sam Hough derived from the Gorham Archives, only 25 of these goblets were ever made - so these represent one third of the entire production.
Erik Magnussen was an important Danish silversmith hired by Gorham from 1925 to 29 to develop silver in the 'modern' style. During this brief period he designed very creative and beautiful silver. He developed the 'Modern American' line in 1928. When Gorham was marketing this line of silver, the American market was not ready for it, preferring conservative colonial styled silver. Hence Gorham had a great deal of trouble selling Magnussen forward looking silver.
As the great depression took hold, Gorham reduced retail prices and still did not sell much of Magnussen's silver. It is generally believed that much of Magnussen's silver was eventually destroyed by Gorham. It is for these reasons that today American art deco silver is extremely rare, very much appreciated and highly sought after by collectors and museums. (See Gorham Silver by Charles Carpenter.)
These rare sterling silver goblets are marked with Gorham's trademark, 'GORHAM', 'STERLING', the model number 14057 and Magnussen's trademark. They measure 4 inches in diameter and 5.75 inches high, weigh a combined 55.2 troy ounces and are in very good/ excellent antique condition.