Louis Comfort Tiffany and Laurelton Hall: An Artist’s Country Estate
January 25, 2012
In her lecture, Ms. Frelinghuysen will focus on Laurelton Hall, the extraordinary Long Island country estate of Louis Comfort Tiffany, as one of the most personal expressions of Tiffany’s aesthetic genius. She will talk about the estate as a residential masterpiece and also discuss the myriad collections with which he filled the rooms—his own leaded-glass windows, glass vases, pottery, enamels, and paintings, as well as examples of Islamic, Asian, and Native American art.
“Laurelton Hall serves as a metaphor for Tiffany’s art in other media— his lamps, jewelry, vases, pottery, enamels, and windows,” she says. “Although no longer extant, Laurelton Hall represented Tiffany’s quest for a utopian artistic space and his ultimate pursuit of beauty in the natural world.”
Ms. Frelinghuysen was the curator of the major Metropolitan exhibition Louis Comfort Tiffany and Laurelton Hall—An Artist’s Country Estate (November 21, 2006–May 20, 2007) and the editor of the accompanying catalogue. She received the Robert C. Smith Award of the Decorative Arts Society (DAS) for “most distinguished decorative arts article of 2006” for “The Most Artistic House in New York City: The Tiffany House at Seventy-second Street and Madison Avenue,” published in that catalogue. The exhibition was organized by the Metropolitan in collaboration with the Morse Museum.
Today the Anthony W. and Lulu C. Wang Curator of American Decorative Arts, Ms. Frelinghuysen has been a staff member at the Metropolitan since 1980 when she earned her master’s degree in the Winterthur Program of Early American Culture. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Princeton University. Most recently, she oversaw the reinstallation of the Charles Engelhard Court of the newly renovated American Wing.
Ms. Frelinghuysen has published widely on American ceramics and glass, with a special focus on the work of Louis Comfort Tiffany. Her scholarship includes: “‘A Glitter of Colored Light’: Tiffany Domestic and Ecclesiastic Windows,” Tiffany Glass: A Passion for Colour (Montreal: Montreal Museum of Art, 2009); co-author, Louis Comfort Tiffany: Inspired by Nature (Shelburne, Vermont: Shelburne Museum, June 2009); “Nature Studies: The Art Jewelry of Louis Comfort Tiffany,” Bejeweled by Tiffany, 1837–1987, edited by Clare Phillips (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2006); “Louis C. Tiffany and the Dawning of a New Era for Mosaics,” The Tiffany Chapel at the Morse Museum (Winter Park, Florida: The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art, 2002); “Louis Comfort Tiffany and New York,” Art Nouveau 1890–1914, edited by Paul Greenhalgh (London and Washington D.C.: Victoria & Albert Museum and the National Gallery of Art, 2000); Louis Comfort Tiffany at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Bulletin (New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Summer 1998); and co-author, Splendid Legacy: The Havemeyer Collection (New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1993). [Winner, 1994 Henry Allen Moe Prize of the New York State Historical Association for an outstanding publication; Winner, 1994 Award of Victorian Society of America, Metropolitan Chapter.]