National Gallery of Art - THE COLLECTION
image of Card Table Card Table
Rendered by Ferdinand Cartier (artist), 1940
watercolor, colored pencil, pen and ink, and graphite on paperboard
overall: 44.5 x 54.7 cm (17 1/2 x 21 9/16 in.)
Index of American Design
1943.8.5815
Not on View
From the Tour: Furniture from the Index of American Design
Object 20 of 26

In addition to Hepplewhite's The Cabinet-Maker and Upholsterer's Guide, patterns for fashionable London furniture were available to American cabinetmakers through The Cabinet-Maker's and Upholsterer's Drawing Book, published in 1792 by Thomas Sheraton, another influential English designer. American cabinetmakers also relied upon a variety of London price books, which featured patterns in both Hepplewhite and Sheraton modes. These books formed the basis for most American furniture design of the late eighteenth century and the first part of the nineteenth century. Hepplewhite and Sheraton designs show considerable overlap in time and in a common emphasis upon graceful linear forms and elegant ornament of classical derivation. Often the term "Federal Style" is used in reference to American furniture that combines features from both Hepplewhite and Sheraton designs and that cannot be considered a pure manifestation of either style. Many card tables were made after the patterns of both Hepplewhite and Sheraton, and often these tables combine elements from both styles. This Baltimore card table, with the bellflower inlay typical of the area, has the graceful lines, rich veneers, and delicate inlays that characterize the best Hepplewhite pieces. The square top with recessed curved, or ovolu, corners was commonly featured in Sheraton forms.

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