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Nancy E. Green

(b Doylestown, PA, June 24, 1856; d Doylestown, March 9, 1930).

American archaeologist, ethnologist and decorative tile designer and manufacturer. Mercer grew up in a privileged Philadelphia family, and at a young age he began his lifelong love of travel, which would take him eventually throughout Europe, the Middle East and Mexico. These travels would later influence his tile designs for the Moravian Pottery and Tile Works. From 1875 to 1879 he attended Harvard University, studying with George Herbert Palmer, Henry Cabot Lodge and Charles Eliot Norton, the latter having a defining influence on the development of his aesthetic sense. From 1880 to 1881 he read law, first with his uncle Peter McCall and then with the firm of Fraley and Hollingsworth, both in Philadelphia, though he never received his law degree. Thereafter, he returned to Europe, becoming interested in archaeology and beginning his lifelong passion for collecting the minutiae and mundane objects of everyday life, becoming one of the first scholars to examine history through a material culture lens....


David Rodgers

( Fingal O’Flahertie Wills )

(b Dublin, Oct 16, 1854; d Paris, Nov 30, 1900).

Irish writer and patron . He was educated at Portora Royal School, Trinity College, Dublin, and Magdalen College, Oxford, where he established himself as a leading figure in the Aesthetic Movement . Wilde espoused the doctrine of Art for Art’s Sake, formulated by Théophile Gautier in the 1830s, and the rarefied hedonism recommended by Walter Pater, who encouraged his literary career. He also adopted the romantic socialism of William Morris, sharing his belief in the artistry of the unfettered craftsman and the importance of beauty in everyday life. He spread his aesthetic philosophy in a series of lectures given in North America in 1882 and later in England. His early writing reveals the influence of the French Decadents; in particular The Picture of Dorian Gray (1890) was largely inspired by Joris-Karl Huysmans’s A rebours (Paris, 1884).

In April 1877, while still at Oxford, Wilde reviewed the opening exhibition of the Grosvenor Gallery, London, for the ...


Michelle Yun

[ Huei-Zu ]

(b Taipei, Taiwan, 1961; d New York, NY, Feb 8, 1997).

Taiwanese curator and art historian. Yang immigrated to the United States at age 15. She received a BA in Art History from Yale University in 1984 that included a six-month sabbatical to Jinan University in Guangzhou to study Chinese in 1982. Yang was exposed to art from a young age through her mother, Suhwa Chou Yang, who ran the Hunglin Art Gallery in Taipei in the 1970s. Upon graduation Yang held internships at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art , both in New York, before accepting a position as Assistant Curator at the New Museum, New York, in 1988. Notable exhibitions she curated during her time at the New Museum include 1+1+1: Works by Alfredo Jaar (1992); Skin Deep (1993); and The Final Frontier (1993). She left the New Museum in 1993 to work as an independent curator and critic while studying to earn a PhD from the Institute of Fine Arts of New York University. In early ...