Artwork, Paintings and Sculpture
The artwork of the Harper Fowlkes House is a wonderful example of multiple forms of art under one roof. When viewing the lavish and sophisticated rooms of the Harper Fowlkes House, one will notice beautiful china, sculpture, paintings, and Rococo frames dating from the 18th and 19th centuries. The artwork within the house provides insight into the life of Alida Harper, her taste, and affection for the arts.
The Harper Fowlkes House is home to many examples of original 19th century china. There are three prominent patterns of china: Derby, Chamberlain Worcester, and Worcester. These patterns are distinctly different and vary through design, color, and function.
China Plate. Derby Pattern. C. 1810.
This Derby Pattern, China Plate is distinctively characteristic with its delicate gold vine scroll and cross star pattern. Inside of the vine scroll are delicate pale flowers which extend all the way around the plate. The attention to detail and fine craftsmanship makes this piece of china not only exquisitely beautiful, but a fine example of the Derby pattern in the 19th Century.
Serving Dish. Chamberlain Worcester . C. 1860.
Chamberlain Worcester is utterly distinctive with its bold green and gold accents that immediately capture your attention. The china is divided within sections, the middle part is solid green, outlined by a gold stripe, and the top and bottom are beautiful ivy pattern. It seems that there is some antique beading around the outside of the green top, which
complements the overall piece exquisitely. This piece of china was used as a serving dish, to transport food, probably finger food, due to the scale of the china.
Sugar Bowl and Tram, Worcester , 1810.
This piece of Worcester china looks fit for a king, with its rich purple and gold accents. The florid shapes of scrolls are compositionally arranged in a way that is ascetically pleasing and harmonious.
The sugar bowl and tram, sit atop a matching plate, which was meant to catch loose sugar. Also the whole in the tram was meant to hold a spoon.
There are three major portraits within the Harper Fowlkes house that speak to its historical nature. The keystone painting is Joseph Clay, created by artist Jeremiah Theus. Other paintings in the house are of Col. Habersham and Major John Berrien. These paintings portray the use of oil paintings and techniques in the 19th century.
Jeremiah Theus. “Joseph Clay”. Oil on Canvas.
This portrait truly captures the personality and spirit of a great man, Joseph Clay. An active member in Revolutionary Committee, Continental Congress, and was a Deputy Paymaster for Georgia and then the Southern Department. The artist Jeremiah Theus was a well known South Carolina artist who was commissioned to paint this portrait in 1722. This portrait shows wonderful little touches of detail though Clay’s buttons and collar. The artist has made use of a warm light source, which provides delicate highlights throughout the work. There is a sense of power in which Theus captured, that resonates through the work.
Col. Habersham. Oil on Canvas.
The military portrait of Col. Habersham portrays his importance and stature during the Revolutionary War. Col.Habersham served in Samuel Elbert’s regiment and was an original member of the Cincinnati. The overall portrait is relatively flat, with little emphasis on modeling and shading. The artist captures Col. Habersham’s stature in the military and seems proud of his accomplishments, as he holds his sword close to his breast. This is a great example of military uniforms during the 19th century.
Mjr. John Berrien. Oil on Canvas.
Major John Berrien was a major asset to the war effort and to the Georgia Society of the Cincinnati. Berrien was wounded in battle, but served until the Revolutionary war was over. Also, Berrien was an original member and president of the Georgia Society of the Cincinnati. The artist captured a closely framed portrait of Major John Berrien, but was able to include part of his military uniform. This portrait has a penetrating feeling, as if the portrait looks into the viewer. The artist captured an extremely naturalistic portrait, which is well modeled and shaded to emphasis the facial features.