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Tiffany Studios New York "Marsh Marigold" Bronze Planter


The Tiffany Studios New York Marsh Marigold Fern Planter astounds in its detailed carving and lyrical composition. The marigold petals are rendered in a conventionalist side profile, while the cordate leaves twist and turn to allow the viewer to see them from every direction. Each root intertwines with the other, forming Tiffany’s naturalistic interpretation of the traditional Byzantine interlace. Inside the dish is a removable bronze liner with two handles.

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  • Product Details
  • Curator's Notes

Item #: T-20497
Artist: Tiffany Studios New York
Country: United States
Circa: 1910
Dimensions: 10.5" diameter, 3.5" height
Materials:  Bronze
Signed: “Tiffany Studios New York 834” 
Literature: Similar planter pictured in Louis C. Tiffany's Glass - Bronzes - Lamps: A complete collector's guide, by Robert Koch, page 108, cat 156. and in Tiffany Lamps and Metalware, by Alastair Duncan, page 396, plate #1605

Tiffany’s impetus to sell fern planters came from his personal pastime of fern collecting. A victim of the Victorian fern craze (pteridomania), Tiffany cultivated forty-nine species of fern in Laurelton hall. Fern collecting was one of few hobbies to transcend class and gender barriers during the Victorian era: people from all walks of life were avid collectors. Amateur botanists armed with field guides would press ferns for scientific study, home décor, and memories of happy hours spent with friends and family.

In true Victorian fashion, Tiffany cultivated his ferns in his extensive greenhouse. Unlike working-class urbanites who were forced to use glass terrariums, Tiffany could afford to cultivate his ferns in the style of the ferneries at the Royal Botanical gardens in Edinburgh. This passion for ferns was one shared by Tiffany’s moneyed peers. When renovating Hever Castle in Kent in 1903, William Waldorf Astor built a fernery into his gardens.