Jonathan and Karin Fielding talk about what they collect and why and their interest in the pieces with respect to how they were made and how they were used. Their focus: American ingenuity manifested in American art made for utilitarian purposes by craftspeople in rural New England from the 18th through 19th centuries.
Standing in his kitchen at home, Jonathan Fielding talks about the Caverly family painting hanging on the wall. The beloved piece, by Joseph S. Davis, painted in the early 1836, is rich with detail, providing insight into the lives of Charles and Comfort Caverly and their son, Isaac.
Jonathan Fielding, at home, discusses his Tall Case Clock, ca. 1820, by Riley Whiting of Winchester, Conn. While Whiting painted the face and made the works, in fact, says Fielding, someone else worked on the case, and that is what interests Fielding most: the exuberant painting that makes the clock appear to be housed in a combination of expensive woods and marble.
June Li, co-curator of the exhibition “Gardens, Art, and Commerce in Chinese Woodblock Prints,” explains how the “Ten Bamboo Studio Manual of Calligraphy and Painting” (ca. 1633–1703) directly relates to founder Henry E. Huntington’s own scholarly mission to collect art, books, and plants. The Huntington’s rare edition of the “Ten Bamboo Studio Manual” is on public view for the first time in the exhibition “Gardens, Art, and Commerce in Chinese Woodblock Prints.” This international loan exhibition unites several interests at The Huntington, home of one of the most extensive collections of early printed books in the nation, various collections of prints by European and American artists, and one of the largest Chinese scholar’s gardens outside of China.
Inlaying, demonstrated here, is one of the processes involved in the once-popular extra-illustration of books, the subject of "Illuminated Palaces: Extra-Illustrated Books from the Huntington Library," an exhibition that put more than 40 of these works on view.