Madeline Yale Wynne's unique masterpiece creation, the Garden of Hearts bride's chest,
finally went back home to Massachusetts after 105 years!
It's funny how things work out....in this, our 25th year of specialising in mainly the British Arts & Crafts Movement,
one of our favourite & best acquisitions/sales to date (and we've been very lucky to have handled a fair few)
is/was an American piece unlike any of the usual pieces of American Arts & Crafts!
A truly amazing and unique Bride's Chest, a joy to behold, by none other than the extremely talented Madeline Yale
(of Yale locks family fame) Wynne, who started a thriving Arts & Crafts community in Deerfield, Massachusetts, USA.
Essentially, her masterpiece.
To cut a very long story short, we luckily sourced the chest a while ago
(fell in love with it instantly, without knowing anything about it), researched it, and happily lived with it.
After many seemingly tortuous legal/administrative hurdles over the last nine months, the chest has finally been repatriated
and now back home to its one and only rightful home, Historic Deerfield in Massachusetts,
after an absence of some 105 years, where it is now proudly on display.
Their Holy Grail had been "missing" since it initially travelled to England in 1918, whereabouts unknown!
To quote from Historic Deerfield's website:
"In 1903, Madeline Yale Wynne (1847-1918), a leader in the American Arts and Crafts Movement, constructed an oak bride’s chest ornamented with hammered copper panels, wrought iron hinges, and semi-precious stones.
Known as the Garden of Hearts for its carved and painted scene of three inverted heart-shaped trees
standing alongside a winding river, the chest is a tour-de-force of Arts and Crafts design,
which favored handcraftsmanship over mechanized production
and showcases Wynne’s many talents as a painter, metalsmith, and woodworker.
Inspired by 18th-century Connecticut Valley chests, Wynne considered it her greatest artistic accomplishment,
reflecting later that this chest was “perhaps better than anything she had done.”
This exhibition celebrates the return of Wynne’s masterpiece,
which was lost for much of the 20th century, from England to the United States."
Fuller details and additional images are in our website link:
We miss it already but a very happy outcome all round!