ANNE WANNER'S Textiles in History / Publications

World exhibitions and design, 1851 - 1878, as shown in publications from Leipzig
published in: CIETA-Bulletin No 75, 1998, p. 153 - 160, by Anne Wanner-JeanRichard

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  London 1851:
  This article draws on information provided by the International Exhibitions to explore the development of the Swiss embroidery industry during the second half of the 19th century.
In addition to the official catalogues, many exhibits were described in a series of lavishly-illustrated journals beginning with a special supplemet to The Art Journal in 1852.
Its success encouraged others to follow suit, including F.A. Brockhaus of Leipzig, who published illustrated cataloges of the 1862, 1867, 1873 and 1878 exhibitions.

In his introduction to the first of these, Brockhaus set out the main aims of the publication; they were to provide industry with aesthetic guide-lines and proof - with examples - of the union of Fine and Applied Art; to contribute to the history of industry; to be a souvenir both for visitors and for those who had not visited the exhibition; and, through its illustrations, to help refine the taste of those people, particularly women, who were not interested in industry.
Brockhaus's catalogue of 1867 (1) also emphasised its value in providing German applied art with a wealth

  of designs and patterns, while reiterating the belief that an art-school training was indispensable for all manufacturers. The question of good design was a recurring theme, as was the debate over industrialisation and its impact on taste.

The London Exhibition of 1851 was an important event for the hand embroidery industry of eastern Switzerland. Many of the Swiss manufacturers participated, and their names and short descriptions of their exhibited articles were published in the official English catalogue (2).

Some of the exhibits were also published in the supplement to the illustrated Journal of Leipzig of May 10th 1851, (3), where, as in other publications concerned with the world exhibitions, wood engraving was the preferred method of reproduction.

Although it is difficult to distinguish between the techniques of lace, embroidery and Jacquard weaving, these illustrations give a good idea of the designs.

  The entries in the English catalogue for No. 205 reads:
- TANNER, JOHN ULRICK, Bühler, Canton of Appenzell, Manufacturer. Silk pocket handkerchiefs, embroidered in cotton with portraits, &c.
Curtain, table-cloth, or bed-cover, muslin and silk, embroidered in cotton, representing William Tell and the arms of the twenty-two cantons of Switzerland: specimen of every kind of embroidery.
Transparent silk, representing the female embroiderer while working the preceding, with several landscapes of the country and the dwelling-place of the manufacturer.
Picture of silk worked in cotton and coloured silk, from nature. Curtain of net, embroidered; muslin curtains, embroidered.
Bed-cover of net muslin, embroidered.
Dress of raw silk, embroidered and coloured in silk, &c.
Dress of muslin, embroidered and coloured in cotton, wool, silk, gold, with feathers and pearls.
Dress of muslin, embroidered with net.

More precise information about the "transparent silk" was supplied by the Journal of Leipzig which states that the lady Appenzell is sitting in a landscape with the Säntis mountain in the background. In the right hand corner there is a view of the village of Appenzell, in the left hand corner a representation of Wildkirchli and at the bottom the village of Bühler, where Mr. Tanner lived.

  In addition to those exhibited by the firm of Tanner, embroidered dress pieces were shown by other manufacturers including the firm of John Baenziger from Thal near St Gallen. Entry No. 188 reads:

- BAENZIGER, JOHN, Thal, near St Gall. Manufacturer, Specimens of needlework, viz. ; robe, cape, collars, on muslin and jaconet; caps, on the same; short sleeves.
Embroidery on lace, viz.: scarf, robe, mantle, long and short sleeves; collars; high chemisette, the same with collar; ladies'caps, cuffs, and shawls.
Handkerchief, on French cambric, with lace border.
Tambour needlework, viz.: short sleeves, ladies' caps, collar, habit-shirts, and cape; morning dress on jaconet; robe on muslin.
Plain Muslins and plain jaconet.

Johannes Baenziger (1804-1840) employed more than 4000 embroiderers in his business, which was important in the first half of the 19th century; before 1840 he had opened a second branch, called Schneider and Baenziger, in the small Austrian town of Hoechst, close to the Swiss border (4).

1 - Dr. Wilhelm Hamm,
Illustrierter Katalog der Pariser Industrie-Austellung von 1867, published by F.A. Brockhaus, Leipzig, 1868
2 -
Official Descriptive and Illustrated Catalogue in three volumes, of the Great Exhibition 1851, London
1851, vol. III, Switzerland, p. 1264-1283, entries of embroideries No. 188 to 208.
3 -
Beilage zur illustrierten Zeitung, Leipzig, 10. Mai 1851.
4 - Peter Holderegger,
Unternehmer im Appenzellerland, Herisau 1992, Baenziger Johannes, p. 82.

Embroidery by J.U. Tanner, Bühler
Canton of Appenzell, Switzerland

Embroidered blouse, exhibited by J. Baenziger,
Thal, Canton of Appenzell, Switzerland


  London Designers Reports Machines Style Later 19th c.  

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