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The Century Vase

Decorative Arts and Design

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The Century Vase

Artwork Details

Artist/Maker

Karl L. Müller (American, born German, 1820-1887), designer
Union Porcelain Works, Greenpoint, New York, 1863-1922, maker

Date

1876

Medium

Porcelain with paint and gilt decoration

Accession #

1986.163

Dimensions

22 1/2 x 12 x 12 inches

Location

On View - Stent Family Wing, Level 3, Gallery 304

Description

Designed and modeled by Karl L. H. Müller, the Century Vase is one of only two made for display at the Centennial Exhibition commemorating the nation’s one hundredth birthday. The vase’s eclectic decoration includes bison-head handles and a profile of George Washington—a powerful patriotic symbol for many Americans. This monumental piece evokes nostalgia for the past, pride in industrial progress, and optimism for the future.
Union Porcelain Works, the maker of this vase, was the first American firm to successfully apply underglaze polychrome decoration on true, hard-paste porcelain.

Credit

Virginia Carroll Crawford Collection