The Arts & Crafts Movement
Cleveland and Environs

IAC's 24th Annual Arts and Crafts Conference
September 15 – 18, 2022

In its 24th annual Arts and Crafts Conference, Initiatives in Art and Culture explored Cleveland and environs, both as a hub for the Arts and Crafts Movement and as a site of its living spirit. The conference focuses on the forces, individuals, and institutions that played a role in shaping Cleveland’s cultural establishment from the 1870s – 1930s. The conference considered Cleveland’s connections to other centers of the Movement, in particular Chicago, its important metalworking, enamel, and ceramic traditions, and the cultural institutions, context, architecture, and planning of the city. Attention was also paid to the institutions that offered educational opportunities to women and the roles that they played in shaping the City’s culture and taste. We considered a spectrum of styles, the evolution of taste, and sources of influence, while keeping in mind that the Movement is defined by its ethos, principles, and ideals.

The conference was hosted by the Cleveland Museum of Art, The Old Stone Church – The First Presbyterian Church of Cleveland, The Cleveland Public Library, The Union Club, Rose Iron Works, TAP by Todd Pownell, The First Church in Oberlin, United Church of
Christ, Allen Memorial Art Museum, Lake View Cemetery, and East Mount Zion Baptist Church.

We also gratefully acknowledge generous funding from Tom Bird, Bulley & Andrews, Crown Equipment, The Felicia Fund, Barbara Fuldner, The George Gund Foundation, The Marie and John Zimmermann Fund, Tori Simms and Ray Hofmann, and anonymous donors, as well as The Magazine ANTIQUES and American Fine Art Magazine for their media support.

Program agenda

Thursday, September 15, 2022
Formal sessions took place at the Cleveland Museum of Art (CMA), 11150 East Blvd., Cleveland, OH 44106.

8:30 – 9:30 a.m. Conference registration in the lobby of the Hotel Indigo Cleveland Downtown Individual travel to CMA
10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Formal sessions at CMA (1916, Hubbell & Benes in a landscape designed by the Olmsted Brothers; 1970 educational wing, Marcel Breuer; 2009 – 2012 addition, Rafael Viñoly). Located in the Wade Park District and in the University Circle, CMA was founded as a trust in 1913 with an endowment from prominent Cleveland industrialists.
10:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Tour of the Museum’s collections of American and Decorative Arts and private viewings of related highlights from the library and from decorative arts storage offered by Mark Bassett, adjunct faculty, Cleveland Institute of Art (CIA), and chief author of Cowan Pottery and the Cleveland School whose research explores the CIA’s history, alumni, and their work; curator Mark Cole, Chair of Modern, Contemporary and Decorative Art and William P. and Amanda C. Madar Curator of American Painting and Sculpture, CMA; Stephen Harrison, Deputy Director and Chief Curator, Museum of Art, Munson–Williams–Proctor Arts Institute; Deirdre Vodanoff, Curatorial Assistant, Curatorial Department, and Leslie Cade, Director of the Ingalls Library and Museum Archives, CMA.
12:30 – 1:30 p.m. Lunch (advance purchase required)
1:30 – 2:15 p.m. The Wade Family’s Role in the Creation of Cleveland’s Cultural Infrastructure 1890 – 1930. Holly Witchey, Executive Director, Cleveland Philanthropy, and author of several books and articles on the Wade Family.
2:20 – 3:05 p.m. Craft Versus Production and Marketing the Arts & Crafts. Richard Guy Wilson, architectural historian and Commonwealth Professor Emeritus in Architectural History at the University of Virginia.
3:05 – 3:20 p.m. Break
3:20 – 4:05 p.m. Crafts of the Cleveland School: Glass, Enamel, and Ceramics
From Clara Driscoll to Seth Nagelberg.
Mark Bassett.
4:10 – 4:50 p.m. John Paul Miller: The Ongoing Manifestation of the Arts & Crafts Movement in Cleveland. Stephen Harrison.
5:00 p.m. Departure from CMA and walk to Severance Hall
5:15 – 6:15 p.m. Visit to Severance Hall (Walker & Weeks; opened 1931); designed to complement the nearby CMA, the exterior features a neoclassical portico and an Art Deco relief by New York sculptor Henry Hering with an interior featuring elements of Art Deco and Egyptian Revival. Named after a patron and his wife, Elisabeth Huntingdon DeWitt Severance, it serves as the home of The Cleveland Orchestra.

Friday, September 16, 2022

9:00 Gathering at the Old Stone Church, 91 Public Square, Cleveland, OH
9:00 – 10:30 a.m. Tour of the Old Stone Church. The First Presbyterian Church of Cleveland (Charles Schweinfurth, 1884, closely based on the 1834 original) features stained glass windows, four of which were designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany and an impressive, wood truss, barrel-vaulted ceiling.
9:45 – 10:15 a.m. Cleveland Zenith: Architecture and Urban Planning in Cleveland,
1890 – 1930.
David H. Ellison, architect.
10:30 a.m.– 1:00 p.m. Walking tour led by David H. Ellison, visiting the following:

The Society for Savings Building, also known as the Society Corp. Building (Burnham & Root, 1889), was the tallest building in Cleveland until 1896 and often considered to be Cleveland and Ohio’s first modern skyscraper. The building boasts an interior designed by William Prettyman with Walter Crane murals and a leaded-glass skylight.

The 1903 Group Plan. An ambitious city-planning scheme devised by Arnold W. Brunner, John M. Carrère and Daniel Burnham; in it, the Mall—to feature Beaux Arts buildings of uniform height—was to become the city’s functional and symbolic center. To create an official gateway leading from a new railroad depot on the lakefront to Public Square, the City’s main train station was to be built at the north end of the Mall. This plan was quashed in the 1920s by the Van Sweringen brothers’ decision to build their Union Terminal train station on Public Square. Seven buildings (one demolished) were realized as part of the plan of which we will visit the following:

  • The original Cleveland Federal Building (Arnold W. Brunner). Now the Howard Metzenbaum Courthouse, it was the first building erected under the 1903 Group Plan.
  • The Cleveland Public Library (Walker & Weeks, construction begun in 1923; Stokes Wing, 1997 connected by an underground corridor). The Library features a garden designed by landscape architecture firm OLIN with sculptures by Maya Lin and Tom Otterness. We view highlights of the Special Collections with Heather A. Shannon, Fine Arts and Special Collections Manager, Main Branch.
  • The Cuyahoga County Courthouse (Lehman & Schmitt, 1906 – 1912). The front entrance is flanked by bronze statues of Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton by Karl Bitter. The cornice is surmounted by several stone statues of historical lawgivers, two of which are by Daniel Chester French. The interior contains murals by Frank Brangwyn, Violet Oakley, Charles Yardley Turner, Max Bohm, and Frederick Wilson.

The Arcade (John Eisenmann and George H. Smith, 1890), two nine-story buildings are joined by a five-story arcade with a glass skylight spanning over 300 feet and four balconies. The Skylight was built in 1890 by the Detroit Bridge Co. run by Stephen V. Harkness.

The Cleveland Trust Company (George Browne Post, 1903). The basement now houses a bar and nightclub, the first and second floors are occupied by Heinen’s Fine Foods grocery, and the third floor contains offices. The building features important murals by Francis Millet and sculpture by Karl Bitters in its pediment.

1:00 – 3:00 p.m. Luncheon and lecture at the Union Club of Cleveland, E. 12th St. and Euclid Ave., Cleveland, OH (established 1872; present building: Charles F. Schweinfurth, 1905). (Advance purchase required for attending the talk).

Keynote lecture on the Architecture of Charles Schweinfurth and preservation in Cleveland. Anthony Hiti, principal, Hiti, DiFrancesco + Siebold.

Introduction to contemporary jewelers, Todd Pownell (trained goldsmith and graduate gemologist) and Debra Rosen (whose work is rooted in the European studio atelier practice and the tradition of jewelry as a fine art).

3:30 – 8:00 p.m. Bus departure for evening visits to the following:

Rose Iron Works, LLC, 1536 E. 43rd St., Cleveland, OH. Founded in 1904 by Martin Rose, a highly skilled ornamental blacksmith trained in Budapest and Vienna, Rose Iron Works remains a family-owned source of architectural, ornamental, and sculptural metalwork. Present owner Bob Rose discussed the firm’s history and work.

Evening viewings and reception at TAP by Todd Pownell, 1667 E. 40th St., #3B, Cleveland, OH. Contemporary jewelers Todd Pownell and Debra Rosen work in the Arts and Crafts tradition with the tools and bench of John Paul Miller. They are joined by Arts and Crafts metalwork Collector Boice Lydell.

8:00 p.m. Bus departure for the Hotel Indigo Cleveland Downtown.

Saturday, September 17, 2022

8:15 a.m. Departure from Hotel Indigo Cleveland Downtown for Oberlin College
9:15 – 11:00 a.m. Visit to the First Church in Oberlin, United Church of Christ (cornerstone laid in 1842). The sanctuary was the largest auditorium west of the Alleghenies when it was built. Services were lead by Charles Grandison Finney, Professor of Theology and then second president (1851 – 1865) of Oberlin. Members of all Christian faiths who moved to Oberlin were absorbed into this one congregation. Designed as a Meeting House, it served parish and community needs, even housing local fire trucks in the basement.
9:15 – 9:45 a.m. Coffee and welcome by David Hill, Pastor of The First Church in Oberlin, United Church of Christ.
9:45 – 10:45 a.m. The 1917 Oberlin Arts & Crafts Exhibition: Chicago’s Ellen Gates Starr and the Arts & Crafts Movement in Cleveland and Environs. Annie Storr, Resident Scholar, Women’s Studies Research Center, Brandeis University, an authority on the influence of John Ruskin, William Morris, and the Arts and Crafts Movement on Ellen Gates Starr and the Movement at Hull-House Settlement.
11:00 – 11:15 a.m. Departure from First Church in Oberlin and walk to Mary Church Terrell Main Library (Warner, Burns, Toan & Lunde, 1974
11:15 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. At Mary Church Terrell Main Library (Warner, Burns, Toan & Lunde, 1974), visit to Oberlin College Library’s Special Collections to view its holdings of Arts and Crafts books. Viewing of Oberlin’s new Albion Letter Press at the College’s working letter press shop with Ed Vermue, Special Collections & Preservation Librarian.
12:15 –1:15 p.m. Walking tour of the Oberlin Campus led by Allen Memorial Art Museum (AMAM) director Andria Derstine, featuring Joseph Lyman Silsbee’s Memorial Arch (1903); Cass Gilbert’s Finney Chapel (1908), Cox Administration Building (1915), AMAM, Allen Memorial Hospital (1925), and the 1931 quadrangle for the Graduate School of Theology; Wallace Harrison’s Hall Auditorium (1954); Minoru Yamasaki’s Conservatory and King Building (1962 – 1966); and Warner, Burns, Toan & Lunde’s Mary Church Terrell Main Library (1974).
1:15 – 2:30 p.m. Luncheon at 1833 Restaurant at The Hotel Oberlin
2:30 p.m. Bus departure for the Weltzheimer/Johnson House
2:45 – 3:30 p.m. Visit to Frank Lloyd Wright’s Weltzheimer/Johnson House (1947).

The first of nine Usonian homes to be built in Ohio and the only non-Californian Usonian to use redwood, it features brick construction, an L-shaped plan, a flat roof with a cantilevered carport, simple built-in furniture, and tall glass walls and doors that open to the landscape. The house is relatively large in scale and features decorative mill work, including roof dentil ornamentation made from wooden spheres. Hemispherical ornaments in the fascia and curvilinear cutouts in the clerestory panels are also unique to the design of the house. As a result, and in keeping with many of Wright’s projects, the construction budget rose from $15,000 to $50,000. Following Margaret Weltzheimer’s death in 1963, two subsequent owners made significant alterations to the house. In 1968, Ellen H. Johnson, an art historian, purchased the house and oversaw its restoration. Upon her death in 1992, the house was given to Oberlin College to serve as a guesthouse for the Art Department and AMAM.

3:30 p.m. Bus departure for AMAM (Cass Gilbert, 1917; 1977 addition, Robert Venturi)
3:45 – 4:45 p.m. Tour of AMAM. The museum is named after its founder, Dr. Dudley Peter Allen, a graduate and trustee of Oberlin College and the first husband of Elisabeth Severance Prentiss, whose bequest as Mrs. F. F. Prentiss included parts of her art collection started during her first marriage to Dr. Allen. AMAM includes ironwork by Samuel Yellin and painted ceiling decorations by Frederick J. Wiley. Other paintings include stanzas from a poem by the 19th-century transcendentalist Christopher Pearse Cranch at the clerestory level.
4:45 p.m. Bus departure for the Hotel Indigo Cleveland Downtown

Sunday, September 18, 2022

9:30 a.m. Bus departure for Lakeview Cemetery from the Hotel Indigo Cleveland Downtown
10:00 – 12:00 a.m. Tour of Lake View Cemetery (founded 1869); favored by wealthy families during the Gilded Age, the extensive early monument-building at Lake View helped give rise to the Little Italy neighborhood.

Notable monuments include the following:

  • The James A. Garfield Memorial (George Keller, 1890). Constructed of stone sourced locally from the quarries of the Cleveland Stone Company, the memorial features a distinctive 180-foot tower, stained-glass windows, a golden dome, and exterior reliefs by Caspar Buberl depicting scenes from Garfield’s life.
  • Wade Memorial Chapel (Hubbell & Benes, dedicated 1901). Wade Memorial Chapel is one of the few remaining structures that features an interior entirely designed by Louis Comfort Tiffany and his studios. Before being installed in the Chapel at Lake View, The Flight of Souls (which remains an important example of Tiffany’s highly prized ecclesiastical work) was on view at the 1900 Exposition Universelle in Paris where it was awarded a gold medal.
12:00 – 1:30 p.m. Luncheon at Lakeview Cemetery
1:30 p.m. Bus departure from Lakeview Cemetery for East Mount Zion Baptist Church
2:00 – 3:15 p.m. Visit to East Mount Zion Baptist Church (1905 – 1908, formerly The Euclid Ave. Christian Church), 9990 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, OH. George Kramer designed the exterior, J. R. Lamb Studios created the interior woodwork and windows. In 1955, East Mount Zion Baptist Church purchased the sanctuary and became the first African–American church to hold services on Euclid Ave. Tour led by Reverend Brian Cash.

Closing remarks and farewell. Lisa Koenigsberg.

3:30 p.m. Bus departure for the Hotel Indigo Cleveland Downtown