From: The Huntington Limited Edition: 30 Exhibition: A “New and Native” Beauty: The Art and Craft of Greene & Greene Material: Printed 2-ply vinyl Dimensions: 35" x 96" (88.9cm x 243.84cm)
Hanging Hardware Included
Arts & Crafts stained glass achieved new heights in the masterful designs of Greene & Greene. They combined natural hues and shapes that flow from organic to modern in their door design for the Jennie Reeve house in Long Beach, California. As in the work of other Arts & Crafts designers, the door was just one part of an overall, cohesive design that included the house, its finishes, and its contents. 30 banners from the Huntington feature the door to full effect.
The Arts & Crafts Movement had its roots in England in the late 1880''''s, but the influence of this burgeoning movement would ultimately be felt all over America, Europe, and even Japan. In other countries many names would be attached to iterations of the style - Art Nouveau, Art Deco, Jugendstil, Craftsman, Mission - but related tenets were always at its core. These ideas would go on to shape 20th century attitudes towards design, lifestyle, work, and home.
Starting with the work of William Morris and the writings of John Ruskin in Great Britain, the ideas that came forth were new and bold for their time. The Arts & Crafts ideology viewed fine arts, decorative arts, applied arts, crafts, and architecture as a unified whole, what the German’s dubbed gesamtkunstwerk. At heart, the movement stemmed from the belief that the hand of the craftsman was being erased by industrialization and mass-production. They instead championed the revival of traditional techniques, and believed that art could and should be a part of everyday life. In each country where these ideas took root, they generated their own specific outcomes based on local cultural needs, yielding clearly identifiable styles. For example, the stylized roses of Charles Rennie Mackintosh in Scotland; the abstract, sinuous curves of Belgians Henry Van de Velde and Victor Horta; or the classic Craftsman bungalow in the US.
This banner showcases the central portion of a leaded glass and wood entry-hall panel designed by Charles and Henry Greene for the Jennie Reeve House in Long Beach, CA (1903-04). The top segment of the stained glass panel espouses the natural beauty of color and light through a layered effect of landscape, water, and sky. Beyond the picket fence sits the Pacific Ocean and a milky California sky. The bottom portion of the panel is more abstract, hinting at modernity with its intertwining mosaic of colors and shapes. The back of the banner is white with a sage green band down the left hand side. Sage green, white, and brown text reads “Huntington/The Art & Craft of GREENE & GREENE/Oct. 18, 2008 through Jan 26, 2009”.
These banners were displayed around Los Angeles from October 18, 2008 through January 26, 2009 to promote the exhibition A “New and Native” Beauty: The Art and Craft of Greene & Greene. It then traveled to the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s Renwick Gallery in Washington, D.C. and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.