Intricate staircases made by secretive French woodworking mastersOn March 21, 2018 by Kenna
An art collector who died earlier this year donated a remarkable collection of escaliers to Cooper-Hewiit Museum. The tiny staircases were fashioned by French compagnons, a secretive trade group of master craftworkers.
Via Atlas Obscura:
Historically, woodworkers have often chosen to produce a tiny, intricate staircase as their “masterwork.” Over 30 years, the art dealer and collector Eugene V. Thaw, who died at 90 in January 2018, amassed an incredible collection of these staircase models, dating from between the 18th and 20th centuries. Measuring only a few inches in height, they are self-supporting, graceful, and impossibly delicate. Since 2007, they have been part of the permanent collection of New York’s Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, and are currently on display alongside craftsmen’s working drawings.
In France, these are entire museums just for the crafts:
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