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Samuel Yellin

Decorative Arts

Samuel Yellin was one of the most important American metalworkers of the early twentieth century. He executed metalwork for the National Cathedral in Washington, D. C., and the New York Athletic Club and Temple Emanuel in New York. Unlike the other metal pieces exhibited here, this one was never installed in a building. Rather, it was a maquette (or study) and may have been the presentation piece shown to the architects of the Federal Reserve Bank in lower Manhattan (see illustration below) to help Yellin secure the commission. The final designs of the actual metalwork in the bank, which Yellin, in the Arts and Crafts tradition, executed by hand, are closely related. Yellin was not an architect as were the designers of the other metal pieces here; rather, the Renaissance Revival style of this grille was dictated by the bold Italian Renaissance style of the bank.
DATES ca. 1922
DIMENSIONS 43 1/4 x 22 13/16 x 1 9/16 in.
MARKINGS The proper right lower front corner is impressed: “SAMUEL YELLIN”.
COLLECTIONS Decorative Arts
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
CREDIT LINE Gift of American Decorative Art 1900 Foundation in honor of Barry R. Harwood
CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Rectangular grille, four pairs of vertically arranged large openwork quatrefoils with centered flower and delineated petals, raised stamen with varied geometric design, with extending small scrolls in the negative space, held together with small, thick bands. The interior decorative whole held to a thick frame with thick bands placed at regular intervals. Condition: very good.
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