Gorham Art Nouveau Antique Sterling Silver 'Poppy' Inkwell, Providence, RI, c. 1900
A stunning example of the art nouveau aesthetic, this beautiful inkwell is cast with fully hand chased details. Gorham made some of the very finest American art nouveau silver and this is a wonderful piece. While this is clearly influenced by their Martelé line, Martelé itself is not always this pretty.
Deep, bold three dimensional castings, all finished by hand, flow organically all over this inkwell. Poppies in full bloom and in bud grow on their vines and leaves in a sinuous fluid motion. The entire outer edge is shaped with flowing organic lines. The background shimmers with a hammered surface that adds to the visual movement of the piece. (This surface - in fact the entire piece - is very similar to the art nouveau flatware pieces in the 'H' line.)
This outstanding piece measures 12 inches wide (yes, it is large), 6.5 inches deep and 2.5 inches high. It weighs 24 troy ounces and is in excellent condition except for missing its glass liner for ink - only important to those resolutely still in the quill age.