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Smithsonian Associates - Entertaining, Informative, Eclectic, Insightful
Lunchtime with a Curator: Decorative Arts Design Series
3-Session Daytime Series
Monday, February 14, February 28, and March 14, 2022 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. ET
Quick Tix Code: 1K0205
Login$45 Package Member
$55 Package Non-Member
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Join curator Elizabeth Lay, a regular lecturer on the topics of fashion, textiles, and American furniture, for an image-rich lunchtime lecture series focusing on decorative arts and design topics.

Please Note: Individual sessions are available for individual purchase.

February 14  Embroidered Gardens: 17th- and 18th-Century English and American Textiles

Throughout the 17th and 18th centuries the use of floral motifs, whether inspired by indigenous or newly introduced species, dominated patterns in both domestic and professional embroidery in England and the American colonies.Titi Halle, director of the Cora Ginsburg Gallery, which specializes in fine and rare costume and antique textiles, discusses the creative designs and techniques that made these embroideries for furnishings and dress so distinctive. She offers examples through both images and live presentations of pieces currently in the gallery’s collection.

February 28  The White House’s Official China

William G. Allman, retired curator of the White House, looks at how presidents have set their splendid tables. He surveys some of the 23 state services; how they have been designed and acquired; their ongoing usage and storage; and their exhibition in the White House’s china collection. He also traces how some pieces that have gotten away from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue have been returned or have been added to the collections of the Smithsonian and private owners. His books include Official White House China: From the 18th to the 21st Centuries published by the White House Historical Association in 2016.

March 14  Tiffany Glass from the Neustadt Collection

Take a behind-the-scenes look at works by Louis C. Tiffany and his studios in the preeminent Neustadt Collection in Queens, New York. Founded by early Tiffany collector Dr. Egon Neustadt, this extraordinary assemblage encompasses Tiffany’s celebrated lamps, windows, metalwork, and rare archival materials. The collection also boasts a one-of-a-kind Tiffany glass archive that includes more than a quarter of a million pieces of original Tiffany flat glass and glass “jewels.” Lindsy Parrott, executive director and curator of the Neustadt Collection, shares highlights of the holdings and discusses new avenues of Tiffany scholarship, such as the personal histories and professional contributions of the designers and artisans essential to his success. She also previews her traveling exhibition Tiffany or Tiphony? The Art of Connoisseurship, which considers lamp forgeries alongside authentic examples to help visitors develop and hone connoisseurship skills. 

3 sessions

Photo caption (upper right): From left to right: Tiffany glass from the Neustadt Collection; Service plate from the George W. Bush State service (Photo courtesy of the White House Historical Association); Crewelwork curtain, English, ca. 1720 (Michael Fredericks/Cora Ginsburg LLC)

Patron Information

  • If you register multiple individuals, you will be asked to supply individual names and email addresses so they can receive a Zoom link email. Please note that if there is a change in program schedule or a cancellation, we will notify you via email, and it will be your responsibility to notify other registrants in your group.
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  • Separate Zoom link information will be emailed closer to the date of each session. If you do not receive your Zoom link information 24 hours prior to the start of each session, please email Customer Service for assistance.
  • View Common FAQs about our Streaming Programs on Zoom.
This program is part of our
Smithsonian Associates Streaming series.