Arthur and Lucia Mathews

At the end of the nineteenth century, as a reaction and revolt against the smog and tyranny of the newly industrialized world, a group of English craftsmen and artists began to preach a return to simplicity. Their words began the Arts and Crafts Movement, which rapidly spread throughout Europe and America. By the beginning of the twentieth century, followers of the Movement were flocking to California to enjoy the splendor of the state’s fresh air and natural beauty. More …

In 1906, Arts and Crafts followers Arthur Mathews (1850-1945) and his wife Lucia Mathews (1870-1955) started producing hand-made furniture and decorative house wares in a small San Francisco workshop named The Furniture Shop. Their style was distinctly Californian, highlighting the native flora and picturesque landscapes for which the state was known.

The Oakland Museum of California houses the largest and most comprehensive collection of Mathews works in the world. It is comprised of over 500 artworks and objects including paintings, sketches, furniture, and frames, as well ephemera and other archival material. Mr. Harold Wagner and the OMCA Art Guild donated the majority of this collection to the OMCA in the mid-1960s.

One of the highlights of the Mathews collection is the large stained glass window designed by Arthur Mathews for the San Francisco Women’s City Club. The Club commissioned the window in 1925 as a memorial to Mrs. Franc Pierce Hammon who, as chairwoman of the Club’s 1925 membership campaign, quadrupled the Club’s membership in one month’s time prior to her death only two weeks later. The window—the perhaps the only glass work designed by Mathews—remained in the Clubhouse until the building was demolished over 30 years later. The window-within-window design epitomizes the California Arts and Crafts style, displaying a lush landscape of magnolias, poppies, and rhododendrons surrounding a mountain village beneath a golden cloudscape.

 

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desk|Writing Desk
c. 1910

"The interior of the Kleinhans drop-front desk has a deep arch with a miniature painting by Arthur Mathews that shows girls dancing on a beach, a theme Mathews returned to several times in...

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ARTIST BIRTH: 1870 ARTIST DEATH: 1955

1896

Poster of woman turning printing press. Poster reads: "Guild of Arts & Crafts. Exhibitions of Books & Printing. 424 Pine St. Jan 20th to 25th. Admission 25cts.

1883

From bottom inner portion of mat, "Arthur F. Mathews (Calif. 1860-1945) "San Francisco Souvenir - Frontispiece to Knight Templar's Grand Entree March," four color lithorgraph, 1883, signed in...

1905

APPROXIMATE DATE: 1905 NOTES: Possibly a study for "California" ARTIST BIRTH: 1860 ARTIST DEATH: 1945

1917

APPROXIMATE DATE: 1917 ARTIST BIRTH: 1860 ARTIST DEATH: 1945

1915
c.1911-12

APPROXIMATE DATE: 1911 NOTES: Intended placement of mural unknown ARTIST BIRTH: 1860 ARTIST DEATH: 1945

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1903
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c. 1913

APPROXIMATE DATE: 1913

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NOTES: Measurements: a-h: 39 x 19 x 18" i-j: 36.5 x 16.75 x 17" Descriptions: a. blue/green "S" Crest b. blue/green/yellow "S" Crest c. blue/green/yellow "S" Crest d. blue/green/ivory "S"...

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c. 1913
c. 1913

APPROXIMATE DATE: 1913

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c. 1913
c. 1913

APPROXIMATE DATE: 1913

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PAINTED WOOD WITH MIRROR INSET, CIRCULAR SHAPE, FLORAL DESIGN

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