Celebrating our 75th

365 Days of Art Archive - Decorative Arts collection

Sort By Collection:

African, American, Ancient, Chinese, Decorative Arts, European, Japanese, Kansas City Sculpture Park, Modern & Contemporary, Photography, Prints, South & Southeast Asian Art Collection

From the Decorative Arts collection.


English fossil discoveries of the 18th century inspired ceramic designers; here, a small teapot is lavishly decorated with fossils of shells, plants and even dinosaur skulls.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

Kenneth Ferguson Four-Legged Vessel

This vessel, inspired by the Museum’s collection of ancient Chinese bronzes, was made by Ken Ferguson, who was head of the ceramics department at the Kansas City Art Institute from 1964 to 1996.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

William Taylor Charger

Ceramics often served to commemorate a political event or display loyalty to a political party or cause.  This slipware charger commemorates the restoration of the British monarchy with the coronation of Charles II.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

Manufacturer: Gorham Manufacturing Company Vase

Named Curio for its curious nature, the unusual pebbled surface of this Japanesque vase was made of molten pieces of copper and brass pressed into silver sheets.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

Joseph Maria Olbrich Side Cabinet

This side cabinet, part of a bedroom suite designed by Joseph Maria Olbrich, a prominent Austrian architect and designer, won first prize at the 1902 international decorative arts exhibition in Turin, Italy.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

Manufacturer: Chantilly Porcelain Manufactory Chantilly Vase

Although the secret to producing porcelain had been discovered in Europe, both Asian and European porcelain wares remained costly luxuries, which inspired affordable alternatives such as this vase, made of tin-glazed, soft-paste porcelain.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

Manufacturer: Sèvres Royal Manufactory Sevres Ice Cream Bucket

One of the 10 pieces owned by the Nelson-Atkins from a 368-piece dinner and dessert service commissioned by a French ambassador in Vienna. This vessel was used to chill ice cream, a luxury food reserved for special occasions in the 18th century.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

Leonard Limousin The Crucifixion

The brilliantly hued flashes of color on this plaque are achieved by backing the translucent enamel with foil.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

Punch Pot

This large pot with an image of Bacchus sitting on a wine barrel was used for punch, which derives its name from the Hindi word panch, or five, referring to the five traditional ingredients: water, sugar, citrus, spices and spirits.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

Workshop of Pietro Massa Gabinetto

This Italian withdrawing room with japanned panels that imitate Asian lacquer is one of only two rooms of its type to exist outside of Italy and the only example in the United States.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

Workshop of Embriachi Marriage Casket

This casket is painstakingly pieced together from hundreds of carved and color-stained pieces of bone, which was often used when ivory became too expensive.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

Warren MacKenzie Bottle

The work of Warren Mackenzie and his students from Minnesota are sometimes referred to as Mingeisota Potters: a conjunction of Mingei (Japanese for Folkcraft) and Minnesota.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

Frank Lloyd Wright Armchair

Made of cypress and plywood, this armchair was part of the furnishings for the house of Clarence Sondern, who hired Frank Lloyd Wright to design his house in Kansas City, which still stands near Roanoke Park.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

John Dwight Covered Tankard

John Dwight’s Fulham pottery was well-known for swirling different-colored stoneware clay bodies, the orange peel effect of salt glaze and the application on the surface of white clay designs of snails, flowers and the figures.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

Owl Jug

Decorated with feathered slips (liquid clay) of tan, brown and gold, the body of this ceramic owl serves as a jug and his head as a cup.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

John Smart Portrait of Mohammed Ali

This portrait of Mohammed Ali, as well as more than 250 miniatures, is part of the Starr Collection of Portrait Miniatures, which was assembled by Mr. and Mrs. John W. Starr and given to the Nelson-Atkins on its 25th anniversary.

From the Decorative Arts collection.


Derived from Greek mythology, this chest’s intricately carved scenes illustrating Apollo’s eternal love for Daphne are appropriate for a cassone as they were often used as bridal chests.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

Armor for Man and Horse

This rare set of matched armor would have required a sturdy horse, as the horse armor weighs 98 pounds and the rider's armor weighs 60 pounds.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

Hanging Lamp

As if drawn to the glow of the iridescent glass globe, a pair of imposing damselflies arch their long tails to form this remarkable hanging lamp.

From the Decorative Arts collection.

Cartel Clock

Taking its name from the cartel, or the point at the bottom of the case, this clock depicts Love as a cupid waving off the encroaching realities brought by the figure Time, who swoops down from the top of the clock.

MORE > >
Where the power of art engages the spirit of community
© 2015 The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
4525 Oak Street, Kansas City, MO 64111 | 816.751.1278 | Contact Us