Furniture Study

The American Decorative Arts Furniture Study is a working library of more than 1,100 examples of furniture and wooden objects— American-made and made for the American market—ranging in date from the 17th to the 21st century.

Bible Box
Card table
Blossfeldt Vase

About the Furniture Study

The Furniture Study houses more than 1,100 works from the Gallery’s collection of American Decorative Arts. This installation of chests, tables, chairs, desks, clocks, cupboards, looking glasses, and woodturnings charts important stylistic developments in American craftsmanship and design. Since the opening of the Furniture Study in 1959–60, efforts have been made to acquire a representative selection of works that offer the opportunity for in-depth study of both stylistic development and regional differences. The Furniture Study also houses a selection of historical tools associated with woodworking and cabinetmaking. The collection is particularly strong in colonial and Federal furniture, mostly from the Mabel Brady Garvan Collection.

Visit the Furniture Study

Free guided tours of the Furniture Study are given on Fridays at 12:30 pm. Visitors are asked to assemble in the lobby of the Gallery.

Find an Upcoming Tour

The Furniture Study is also open by appointment to individuals and groups of fewer than 15 people from Monday to Friday, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. Special viewing arrangements for Yale students and faculty are available. To schedule a visit, contact the Department of American Decorative Arts at 203.432.0632 or

Learn More about American Decorative Arts

Looking Glass

Related Media

In this video, John Stuart Gordon, the Benjamin Attmore Hewitt Associate Curator of American Decorative Arts, gives a brief introduction to the Furniture Study and introduces several of his favorite objects—a colonial chest from Connecticut, an 18th-century Newport high chest, a 17th-century tall case clock, and a Jazz Age desk and bookcase.

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