Walking through the Egyptian Galleries at the Brooklyn Museum, past the stone sculptures and mumified cats, I was struck by the paw feet on this Egyptian chair. Not only is it remarkable that a wooden chair survived this long ago (made as early as 1400 B.C.), but, a fan of American furniture, I was swept in to look further into Egyptian art by these paw feet. To some degree, civilizations have copied each other since the beginning of time. In this case, the lines not only from ancient Greece to the 1820s and early 1900s, but from ancient Egypt into Ancient Greece and on to Chippendale became clear.
As a person who spends the bulk of his time in the American Galleries, looking at the pieces and damaged goods on display made me wonder what portions of our stuff will make it into a gallery 2000 years in the future? The paw foot from an empire sofa? An IKEA wine glass? I suppose I won’t be around to find out.