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Classical Savannah: Fine and Decorative Arts, 1800-1840by Page Talbott
Synopses & Reviews
By the end of the eighteenth century, classicism, which arose out of Europe's fascination with ancient Greece and Rome, had also left its mark on America. This study of the classical style in the fine and decorative arts shows the extent to which it influenced the material culture of Savannah, Georgia, from 1800 to 1840. More than 130 examples of objects owned in Savannah in this period are illustrated, described, and discussed. The objects include oil paintings and watercolors, clocks, musical instruments, jewelry, sculptures, engravings, bank notes, needlework, china, silver, brass, lighting fixtures, architectural elements, and furniture.
Page Talbott presents an overview of the origins of classicism in Europe and its spread to America. Emphasizing Americans' close identification of classicism with national values and ideals, Talbott also discusses the style in the context of Savannah's social life and its history as a major southern port. She covers not only the principles, methods, and materials of classical design, but also the manufacture, distribution, sale, and ownership of a wide range of functional and decorative objects.
Classical Savannah is the companion volume to the Classical Savannah exhibition, which opened in the spring of 1995 at the Telfair Museum of Art in Savannah. Illustrating well over half of the items in the exhibit, and including a detailed checklist of the additional seventy objects not shown in the book, Classical Savannah is a valuable source for historians, designers, decorators, collectors, and anyone interested in this period of America's history.
About the Author
Page Talbott is a decorative and fine arts consultant from Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania. She has written extensively on the classical revival in America, on the history of American interiors, and on decorative arts in general. Talbott is the coauthor, with David A. Hanks, of Innovative Furniture in America, and is a contributor to Treasures of State and the Philadelphia Museum of Art's Three Centuries of American Art.
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