Fruit Basket thumbnail 1
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Silver, Room 68, The Whiteley Galleries

Fruit Basket

1904 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

The architect Josef Hoffmann, one of the founders of the Wiener Werkstatte in 1903, was also one of the principal designers of metal work produced in the workshops. His geometrical designs in silver, of which this fruit basket is an outstanding example, date primarily from the early years of the Wiener Werkstatte.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Silver, hammered and raised
Brief Description
Fruit Basket, silver, Josef Hoffmann, Wiener Werkstätte, Austria, 1904.
Physical Description
Silver. The basket rises from a small square base, supported below and on two sides by two parallel strips of metal, joined at intervals by a row of pellets, which finally form a rectangle whose width is determined by the splayed square of the rim. Further strips of metal flank the base at right angles to the rectangle, rising in bars to the rim of the basket; two of these bars project beyond the rim at each side and are joined at the top with a row of pellets.
Dimensions
  • Height: 27cm
  • Width: 23cm
  • Depth: 23cm
Style
Marks and Inscriptions
The monogram of the Wiener Werkstatte and that of the craftsman who made the piece, and the mark denoting first quality silver (1904)
Credit line
Formerly in the collection of Charles and Lavinia Handley-Read.
Object history
Previously in the Handley-Read Collection



"Acquisition RF: 1970/3528

Purchased from Thomas Stainton

Josef Hoffmann studied architecture in Munich and Vienna where he was briefly a pupil of Otto Wagner, the architect in charge of the Vienna Stadtbahnn project. In 1897, Hoffman joined the Vienna Secession led by the painter Gustav Klimt. In 1899, Hoffman was appointed Professor of Architecture at the Vienna Academy of Applied Arts; a post he held until 1941. In 1903, Hoffman visited England with Koloman Moser. Inspired by the example of Ashbee's Guild of Handicraft and supported by the wealthy businessman, Fritz Warndoffer, Hoffman and Moser founded the Wiener Werkstätte the following year. Moser left in 1905 but Hoffman remained associated with the Werkstätte until 1931. At first Hoffman's metalwork for the Werkstätte was severely rectinlinear, owing much to the Scottish architect, CR Mackintosh but towards the 1920s, Hoffman turned to a much more curvilinear style which was in marked contrast to his earlier manner. "
Summary
The architect Josef Hoffmann, one of the founders of the Wiener Werkstatte in 1903, was also one of the principal designers of metal work produced in the workshops. His geometrical designs in silver, of which this fruit basket is an outstanding example, date primarily from the early years of the Wiener Werkstatte.
Bibliographic References
  • Greenhalgh, Paul (Ed.), Art Nouveau: 1890-1914 . London: V&A Publications, 2000
  • Jervis, Simon, Victorian and Edwardian decorative art: the Handley-Read collection, London, Royal Academy of Arts, 1972
Collection
Accession Number
M.40-1972

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record createdDecember 16, 2003
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