Virtual Conversation: Spotlight on the Hartwell Memorial Window

Following the highly anticipated debut of the Hartwell Memorial Window, Elizabeth McGoey, Ann and Samuel Mencoff Associate Curator in Arts of the Americas, joins Nancy Chen, educator in Innovation and Creativity, for a conversation highlighting the spectacular new addition to the Art Institute’s permanent collection.

Talk Segments:
0:00 - Welcome and program overview
3:00 - Introduction to the Hartwell Memorial Window; reinstallation in the Henry Crown Gallery
13:35 - Range and versatility of Tiffany Studios
22:30 - Glass production and Tiffany's innovations in the glass medium
31:25 - On Agnes Northrop, leading designer of landscape windows; the essential contribution by women at Tiffany
35:09 - On Clara Driscoll, another female designer at Tiffany; spotlight on the "Dragonfly Shade"
36:59 - Creative culture and artistic exploration at the Tiffany Studios
44:02 - The window's landscape subject, Mount Chocorua in New Hampshire
46:08 - Scale and monumentality in glass; comparison to Marc Chagall's "America Windows"
54:00 - Conclusion: Tiffany breaking away from convention for ecclesiastical windows; locating the spiritual in nature, in secular imagery

Attributed to Agnes F. Northrop and produced by Tiffany Studios, the Hartwell Memorial Window was commissioned in 1917 for the Central Baptist Church in Providence, Rhode Island. Standing over 25 feet high by 18 feet wide, the window depicts lush natural scenery and a distant view of Mount Chocorua in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. A tour-de-force of radiant materials and technical brilliance, the Hartwell Memorial Window is a remarkably naturalistic image of beauty and depth showcasing Tiffany’s range of innovations in glass. It is now on view in the Henry Crown Gallery at the top of the Woman’s Board Grand Staircase. Located near the Michigan Avenue entrance, the window will welcome visitors as they begin their journey through the museum.

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