Louis Comfort Tiffany’s contribution to the decorative arts encompasses a wide range of glassware, lamps, windows, jewelry, and other items.

The Tiffany Girls, circa 1904-1905, (The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art, Winter Park)

The Tiffany Girls, circa 1904-1905, (The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art, Winter Park)

An exhibit at the New York Historical Society, highlighted the Tiffany Girls, and their most prominent designer Clara Driscoll. Recently discovered letters covering Driscoll’s work at the House of Tiffany from 1888 to 1909 show that women artists and designers contributed a great deal to the success of Tiffany, even while they faced discrimination at the studio.

Dragonfly Lamp, shade designed by Clara Driscoll

Dragonfly Lamp, shade designed by Clara Driscoll

Not only did women who married have to leave the studio, but while men were allowed to form a union, the same rights were forbidden to the women workers. In a work dispute, the male workers at the Tiffany Studio even demanded that the female staff be fired until Tiffany agreed to limit the number of women employees to no more than 27. Typically, women were paid lower wages than men, and male workers feared their rates could be undercut when women were hired for less money.

Cobweb Lamp, Shade designed by Clara Driscoll

Cobweb Lamp, Shade designed by Clara Driscoll

I hope you will take some time to click the links and read about these remarkable women.