Georges Hoentschel: Collector, Designer, and Architect in Belle-Époque Paris


Fall 2010


4th Floor Classroom


Deborah L. Krohn,

Ulrich Leben

This seminar is a pre-requisite for the next Metropolitan Museum of Art-Bard Graduate Center exhibition collaboration with the working title Georges Hoentschel: Collector, Designer, Architect in Belle-Époque Paris, to be jointly curated by Ulrich Leben, Special Exhibitions Curator at the BGC and Daniëlle Kisluk-Grosheide, Curator of European Sculpture and Decorative Arts at the Met.  The exhibition is scheduled to open in January 2013.  This is the first in a sequence of classes that will prepare students for involvement in the researching, writing and production of the exhibition catalogue as well as the organization of the exhibition, and is designed to provide a broad contextual introduction to the history of museums, collecting, interior design, and the creation of the material culture of the period.  From a humble background, Georges Hoentschel became one of the leading designers of interiors inspired by French historic styles for trendy gilded-age patrons and at the same time a pioneer of Art Nouveau design, representing France internationally at expositions in the United States and Europe.  His collection, given to the Metropolitan Museum in the early years of the 20th century by J. Pierpont Morgan, includes important examples of French 18th century woodwork, furniture and gilt bronze mounts in addition to medieval objects.  Course meetings will be lead by Ulrich Leben and Deborah Krohn in collaboration with BGC faculty and others. Assignments will include midterm and final presentations and papers. 3 credits.