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Tirol settle

Dawson Dawson-Watson (American, 1864–1939)

Byrdcliffe Arts and Crafts Colony (American, b. 1902–c. 1915)

c. 1904

Medium stained poplar Measurements H: 68 x W: 68 x D: 26 in. (172.7 x 172.7 x 66 cm) Credit Berdan Memorial Trust Fund Accession Number 2008.77.1 Location Gallery 20, Bruce Galleries


The Tirol settle is a unique design by the Byrdcliffe Arts and Crafts Colony. The word “Tirol” in its name was intended to suggest flat-carved medieval Tyrolean decorative arts of central Europe, giving the object nostalgic associations. The concept of reviving designs of the past is reinforced by the form of the settle, which is a sturdy, enveloping case piece historically useful for controlling drafts when pulled up to a warm fire. Such furniture served to separate living spaces, conveying the idea of a “room-within-a-room” that was widespread during the Arts and Crafts movement in America. Dawson Dawson-Watson, who designed the form and decoration of the settle, was no doubt influenced by the presence at Byrdcliffe of such talented artists as Wilhelm Hunt Diederich and Arthur Wesley Dow.