Mr. Tilden’s Palace: The 19th-Century Interiors of The National Arts Club
Wednesday, October 26
When Samuel J. Tilden embarked on the ambitious project to combine Nos. 14 and 15 Gramercy Park, he hired renowned architect Calvert Vaux to design the renovations. While much is known about Vaux’s contributions to the mansion’s architecture, questions linger as to who was responsible for the interiors’ lavish decoration. The original decorations and furnishings reflected the Aesthetic taste, the prevailing period style that utilized exotic materials, a diverse vocabulary of ornament, and refined craftsmanship to create a complex and artistic interior. New research reveals that Ellin & Kitson, the firm often cited as the house’s decorator, was just one of many firms that contributed to making the Tilden mansion a masterpiece of Aesthetic design.
Moira Gallagher of the American Wing at the Metropolitan Museum of Art will lecture. She has contributed to the Museum’s current installation “The Aesthetic Movement in America” and the recent installation of the Worsham-Rockefeller Dressing Room, a room that survives from John D. Rockefeller’s 19th century townhouse.