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American Decorative Arts
Designer: Kem Weber, American, born Germany, 1889–1963
Maker: Porter Blanchard, 1886–1973

Pair of Candelabra


Pewter and ebony

each: 10 1/2 × 6 × 3 in. (26.67 × 15.24 × 7.62 cm)
John C. Waddell Collection, Gift of John C. Waddell, B.A. 1959
Kem Weber was a leading proponent of modern design in California. These candelabra reveal Weber’s familiarity with central European design, in particular the products of Austria’s Wiener Werkstätte. Using a limited vocabulary of overlapping leaves and repeated shapes, Weber created a spare, slightly asymmetrical composition that recalls the textile designs of Dagobert Peche and other Werkstätte artists. The candelabra were fabricated by the metalsmith Porter Blanchard who, like Weber, lived and worked in Los Angeles. Weber and Blanchard collaborated on a limited range of modernistic pewter decorative items, including these candelabra, a centerpiece bowl, and a tray. These pieces were included in a 1928 exhibition of Weber’s furniture held at the Rike-Kumler department store in Dayton, Ohio.
Designed in Los Angeles, California
Made in Pacoima, California
On view
20th century
Lighting Devices

Debra Roswell, Crestline, Calif., by 1992–2011; purchased by John. C. Waddell, New York, 2011; Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Conn.


John Stuart Gordon, “At Home in Modernism: The John C. Waddell Collection of American Design,” The Magazine Antiques (May/June 2012): 124, fig. 6.

John Stuart Gordon et al., A Modern World: American Design from the Yale University Art Gallery, 1920–1950 (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2011), 30–31, no. 11.

Christopher Long, Kem Weber: Designer and Architect (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 2014), 103, 106, fig. 106.

Sarah D. Coffin, Stephen Harrison, and Emily M. Orr, The Jazz Age: American Style in the 1920s, exh. cat. (Cleveland: Cleveland Museum of Art, 2017), 298–99, 370, no. 424, fig. 364.

Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of such records is ongoing.