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Free Lectures at Winter Park's Morse Museum: Jewelry, Sculpture, and Tiffany

The Morse Museum houses the world’s most comprehensive collection of works by Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848–1933), including the artist and designer’s jewelry, pottery, paintings, art glass, leaded-glass lamps, windows and more.


Winter Parks Morse Museum: Jewelry, Sculpture, and Tiffany

The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art brings scholars to present during its free annual Wednesday Lecture Series beginning this month. This season’s topics will focus on subjects related to the Museum’s collection and exhibitions.


Beth Carver Wees, Curator Emerita of The American Wing at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and Sheila Smithie, Fellow of the Gemmological Association of Great Britain, will begin the lecture series with “Marcus & Co.: A New York Jeweler in the Victorian Era” on

Wednesday, January 24.


The story of Marcus & Co. begins with the rich aesthetic of the Victorian landscape as conveyed in Fascinating Clutter: American Taste during the Reign of Victoria. Herman Marcus (1828–99) trained in Dresden under a court jeweler during the early years of Queen Victoria’s reign, personally delivering bespoke jewelry to the young queen and her husband, Prince Albert. Marcus emigrated to the United States in the 1850s and established himself as a jeweler in New York City. There, his work exemplified the Victorian fascination with “sentimentality and devotion,” non-native art forms, and historical revivalism, raising jewelry to an art form in the American imagination.


On Wednesday, February 21, Sarah Cash, Associate Curator of American and British Paintings, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., will delve into the intersection of art, politics, and history in America with “Politics and Pageantry: Hiram Powers’ Greek Slave, Frederick Douglass, and the Capital City.” Hiram Powers’s marble sculpture, The Greek Slave, achieved unprecedented success in the mid-nineteenth century as the first publicly exhibited, life-size American sculpture featuring a fully nude female figure. Inspired by Greece’s struggle for independence in the 1820s, the sculpture became a focal point for many literary, artistic, and critical responses linking it to the ongoing debate over American slavery. In this lecture, Cash will focus on how this aspect of The Greek Slave intersected with the sculpture’s display in Washington, DC.


Ruth Bigelow Wriston Associate Curator of American Decorative Arts and Manager of The Henry R. Luce Center for the Study of American Art at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City, Medill H. Harvey, will lecture at the Morse on Wednesday, March 27. Harvey will examine American silversmith and avid art collector Edward C. Moore (1827–91) and his creative influence on Tiffany & Co. The series will conclude on Wednesday, April 17, with Lindsy R. Parrott, Executive Director and Curator of the Neustadt Collection of Tiffany Glass, Long Island City, New York. She will explore Louis Comfort Tiffany’s foray into decorative lighting.


The Morse Museum’s Wednesday Lecture Series is free and open to the public. The lectures take place at 2:30 p.m. (doors open at 2:00 p.m.) on selected Wednesdays in the Jeannette G. and Hugh F. McKean Pavilion, 161 West Canton Avenue (just behind the Museum). Space is limited and filled on a first-come, first-served basis.


Winter Parks Morse Museum: Jewelry, Sculpture, and Tiffany

Details of the lectures are as follows:


Wednesday, January 24, 2:30 p.m.

Marcus & Co.: A New York Jeweler in the Victorian Era


Beth Carver Wees. Curator Emerita, The American Wing, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City.


Sheila Smithie Fellow, Gemmological Association of Great Britain.



Wednesday, February 21, 2:30 p.m.

Politics and Pageantry: Hiram Powers’ Greek Slave, Frederick Douglass, and the Capital City


Sarah Cash. Associate Curator, American and British Paintings, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.



Wednesday, March 27, 2:30 p.m.

“Collecting Inspiration: Tiffany & Co.’s Edward C. Moore

Medill H. Harvey. Ruth Bigelow Wriston Associate Curator of American Decorative Arts and Manager, The Henry R. Luce Center for the Study of American Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City



Wednesday, April 17, 2:30 p.m.

An Illuminating Look at Tiffany Lighting

Lindsy R. Parrott. Executive Director and Curator, The Neustadt Collection of Tiffany Glass, Long Island City, New York



Through April, the Morse Museum hours are 9:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Friday; 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday and Saturday; and l p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.


Regular admission is $6 for adults, $5 for seniors, $1 for students, and free for children under 12.


Admission is free from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Fridays, November through April. For more information, please visit morsemuseum.org.


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Winter Parks Morse Museum: Jewelry, Sculpture, and Tiffany

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