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Sidewall (France), 1860–70

This is a Sidewall. It is dated 1860–70 and we acquired it in 1947. Its medium is machine-printed paper. It is a part of the Wallcoverings department.

The framework of this wallpaper captures a format of “postcard” views popularized during the second half of the 19th century. This format was available in a wide variety of block or tile styles, from rustic to more sophisticated, with each paper usually containing 3-6 different scenes, with adjoining tiles always having different views. As most if not all of these block-format papers were machine-printed the pattern repeats were quite small, usually 18 inches, so the maximum number of different scenes was limited.

This paper contains scenes of cowboys shown in a variety of frontier past-times. The machine-printing causes color bleed throughout which is more apparent in the landscape scenes, which softens the images creating a nice contrast to the strict confines of the coffer-like framework which is printed in a strong 3-dimensional appearance. The landscape views appear more to be pictures or illustrations as viewed in a picture frame, as opposed to viewing a landscape through an open window.

It is credited Gift of Eleanor Mitchell.

Our curators have highlighted 1 object that are related to this one.

Its dimensions are

62 x 57 cm (24 7/16 x 22 7/16 in.)

Cite this object as

Sidewall (France), 1860–70; machine-printed paper; 62 x 57 cm (24 7/16 x 22 7/16 in.); Gift of Eleanor Mitchell; 1947-52-1

This object was previously on display as a part of the exhibition Rooms with a View: Landscape & Wallpaper.

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<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url= |title=Sidewall (France), 1860–70 |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=19 October 2019 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>