Armchair, c. 1912-1913

Purcell and Elmslie designed a number of Midwestern banks. These square brick buildings with their opaque art-glass window walls embodied the qualities of solidity and stability important to bankers and their customers. The most elaborate was the Merchants National Bank of Winona, Minnesota, still in use as a bank today. Twelve chairs of this design were made for the bank directors' boardroom. Their cube-like shape echoes that of the bank building. The vertical spindle "screens" forming the sides probably influenced Purcell and Elmslie's designs of armchairs and decorative interior elements for the Edna S. Purcell residence (now the Purcell-Cutts house), in Minneapolis, designed at the same time.

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