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Bequest of Frances P. Taft, Trustee of the Cleveland Museum of Art, 1973-2017 2017.203
Whenever they worked on a piece together, Fred Miller made the silver forms and John Paul Miller was responsible for the enameling, though they were both skilled at each technique.
These enameled silver candlesticks showcase the professional relationship between mentor (Frederick Miller) and student (John Paul Miller) in that the silver was hand-wrought by Frederick and the enamel work was executed by John. Fred encouraged John to give up painting to study metalwork when both were students at the Cleveland Institute of Art. They worked across the bench from each other nearly every day for over forty years thereafter and collaborated on projects from time to time—enameled candlesticks being the most significant of their projects, which were sometimes sold through Fred’s jewelry and luxury goods business Potter and Mellen in Cleveland. The design reflects the spare motifs of modernism, such as minimal decoration and symmetrical forms.
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