Becoming America Highlights from the Jonathan and Karin Fielding Collection of Folk Art James Glisson, John Demos, Jonathan Fielding, Karin Fielding, Robin Jaffee Frank, Stacy C Hollander, Christina Nielsen, Sumpter Priddy, Elizabeth V. Warren, David Wheatcroft

Publication date:
07 Apr 2020
Huntington Library Art Collections and Botanical Gardens
264 pages: 267 x 229mm
271 color illus.
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Celebrating two collectors’ passion for Americana and the window it provides into the everyday beauty of the past

Becoming America offers a multifaceted view of one of the foremost collections of 18th- and 19th-century American folk and decorative art from the rural Northeast. Essays by leading specialists discuss the culture of furniture workshops, exuberant painted decoration, techniques of sewing and quilting, and poignant stories about the families depicted in the portraits. The collection itself includes Shaker boxes, a beaded Iroquois hat, embroidered samplers, metalwork, scrimshaw, handwoven rugs, ceramics, and a weather vane. The majority of these works have never before been published. With lively essays and profuse illustrations, this handsome volume brings to life the aesthetic of early Americans living in the countryside and is an essential exploration of the period’s taste and style.

James Glisson is interim chief curator of American art at The Huntington. Jonathan Fielding is the former director of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and Distinguished Professor at UCLA. Karin Fielding is a trustee of the American Folk Art Museum in New York.

Chosen as a CHOICE Outstanding Academic Title for 2020