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Livestream Lecture | "The Porcelain Sickness" in the Gilded Age

La Maladie de Porcelain

The Porcelain Collections of Consuelo Vanderbilt, Anna Thompson Dodge, and Marjorie Merriweather Post

Please note that this program will now be presented only as a livestream lecture.

This lecture will explore the porcelain collections of Consuelo Vanderbilt (1877-1964), the original American “Dollar Heiress”; Anna Thompson Dodge (1871-1970), heiress to one of America’s great automotive fortunes; and businesswoman, collector, and philanthropist Marjorie Merriweather Post (1887-1973), while placing Post in the context of these two contemporary female collectors and society figures of the day. All three women decorated multiple residences with eighteenth-century furnishings and each had a passion for porcelain. Vanderbilt served as a particularly relevant collecting model for Post who owned eighteenth-century French decorative arts from Vanderbilt’s collection, including an important Vincennes porcelain tureen and platter featured in The Luxury of Clay: Porcelain Past and Present.


This virtual lecture is presented live via Zoom. Participants can submit questions via the Q&A feature.

Registered users will be emailed a link to join this Zoom program. To get started, please download Zoom on your chosen device and explore the Frequently Asked Questions. This program will be recorded.


Rebecca TIllesRebecca Tilles is Hillwood’s curator of 18th-century French and Western European fine and decorative arts. She is the curator of Kristine Mays: Rich Soil (2021) and The Luxury of Clay: Porcelain Past and Present (February 16-June 26, 2022). Rebecca is also organizing a spotlight exhibition entitled Marjorie Merriweather Post and the Diplomacy of Philanthropy, in partnership with the State Department, at the National Museum of American Diplomacy in Washington, D.C. Rebecca completed her PhD in Art History from the University of Sussex (2019) where her dissertation was entitled George and Florence Blumenthal: A Collecting Partnership in the Gilded Age, 1858-1941. She holds a BA (with honors) in French and French Cultural Studies from Wellesley College (2003), an MA in European Decorative Arts from The Bard Graduate Center in New York (2007), and studied at the Ecole du Louvre, Paris. 

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