sweeping back and arms; wood frame with black upholstery and two seperate neck roll cushions; four lion's paw feet, front two surmounted by foliage and fruit; two carved floral medallions on backrest

Sofa, c. 1840

Unknown artist, expand_more

This sofa was high-tech for its day. Mass-produced, upholstered in horsehair (fabric woven from horse tails and cotton or silk), with newly invented coil-spring seating, such furniture was all the rage with the growing American middle class. Joseph Meeks and Sons, one of the most prolific furniture manufacturers in America, advertised a similar sofa for $80 (about $2,000 in 2015 dollars) for sale in its New York and New Orleans showrooms. The sweeping curves and scrolls and the lion’s-paw feet are characteristic of the Greek Revival style. Popular in both Europe and America, it was inspired by archaeological finds of the mid-1700s. Such harking back to classical Greece appealed to Americans, who traced their democracy to ancient Athens.

Details
Title
Sofa
Role
Artist
Accession Number
2002.266a-c
Curator Approved

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sweeping back and arms; wood frame with black upholstery and two seperate neck roll cushions; four lion's paw feet, front two surmounted by foliage and fruit; two carved floral medallions on backrest