Gorham Art Nouveau Antique Sterling Silver 'Poppy' Inkwell, Providence, RI, c. 1905
A stunning example of the art nouveau aesthetic, this beautiful inkwell is cast with full 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.)
In 2001 we sold another example of this model to the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston(see here).
This outstanding piece is marked with Gorham's trademark and 'STERLING/ B2342. It measures 11.75 inches wide, 6.5 inches deep, and 2.5 inches high. It weighs 22.45 troy ounces and is in excellent condition with a replaced ink holder made of silver gilt (original ones were glass) - important only to those resolutely still in the quill age.
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