Visit Your Local PBS Station PBS Home PBS Home Programs A-Z TV Schedules Watch Video Donate Shop PBS Search PBS


Support ANTIQUES ROADSHOW by supporting public television! Give Today
  • SHOP
  • Appraisals

    Aesthetic Movement Painted Pier Mirror, ca. 1900

    Appraised Value:

    $1,000 - $1,500

    Appraised on: July 11, 2009

    Appraised in: Madison, Wisconsin

    Appraised by: Karen Keane

    Category: Furniture

    Episode Info: Madison, Hour 3 (#1409)

    Originally Aired: March 1, 2010

    slideshow IMAGE: 1 of 1  

    More Like This:

    Form: Mirror
    Material: Paint, Wood, Glass
    Period / Style: 19th Century, 20th Century, Aesthetic
    Value Range: $1,000 - $1,500

    Related Links:

    Understanding Our Appraisals
    Useful tips to keep in mind when watching ANTIQUES ROADSHOW


    Appraisal Video: (2:29)


    Appraised By:

    Karen Keane
    Decorative Arts, Furniture
    Partner & Chief Executive Officer
    Skinner, Inc.

    Appraisal Transcript:
    GUEST: It's a family heirloom. My great-grandmother, Josephine Davis, painted it. Don't know when. We think about... probably about the turn of the century. She was married in 1888, and I kind of feel that it's probably something she did as an adult instead of as a teen or a girl. She painted anything she could pretty much get her hands on.

    APPRASIER: Did she ever do porcelain?

    GUEST: Yes.

    APPRAISER: This is a pier mirror. And we call it a pier mirror because it's the kind of large, vertical mirror that would have hung in a room in between two windows. And in the 18th century, they used them for light. From the decorative arts period of 1880, '90, 1900, the homes are dark. And this brought just a ray of light Oh! into a very dark environment. And if you're thinking about the turn of the century into the 20th century, 1900, 1910, which I think is what we would probably deduce from the family lineage that you have, they've got electricity, but not every home has it.

    GUEST: Right.

    APPRAISER: And so you really want mirrors around. But this is part of a tradition of lady painters. It's a time in American history when women have more leisure, and they're beginning to express themselves through something like this. Now, although she was an amateur, she had a great sense of color. And I absolutely love the way this mirror goes from sort of a dark, somber, moody lakescape-- or riverscape here with the fisherman-- up to this wonderful, luminous sky. The sun is setting. It's very cheerful and peaceful. The other thing that's really exciting about it is you can see the foliage has moved across the mirror. If you look at yourself in it, you'd almost be looking through the trees.

    GUEST: Yes. It's just... it's just wonderful.

    APPRAISER: We see a lot of these painted panels on wood. Women often drew from nature, the aesthetic movement. It's got a great beveled frame on it. The beveled glass mirrors this beveling. The important part is that it's got its original painted surface. I would say an auction estimate would probably be in the $1,000 to $1,500 range.

    GUEST: Okay.

    APPRAISER: We're kind of in squirmy economic times at this point.

    GUEST: Yeah, yeah.

    APPRAISER: But a mirror like this, if you had showed it to me three years ago, I would have put the same estimate on it. It's just... it's a real mainstay, wonderfully decorative. And it was originally made as a decorative art object.

    GUEST: It was. I love it.

    WGBH This website is produced for PBS Online by WGBH Boston. ©1997-2015 WGBH Educational Foundation.
    ANTIQUES ROADSHOW is a trademark of the BBC and is produced for PBS by WGBH under license from BBC Worldwide.
    WGBH and PBS are not responsible for the content of websites linked to or from ANTIQUES ROADSHOW Online.
    PBS is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.

    ROADSHOW on Facebook ROADSHOW Tweets ROADSHOW on YouTube