Artists & Designers

Rebecca Cauman (American, 1872-?)

Raised in Boston where she attended the Massachusetts Normal School in the late 1890s, Rebecca Cauman became affiliated with the Society of Arts and Crafts where she may have trained with master enameler Lauren Martin, who trained a number of leading Boston-area metalsmiths including Frank Marshall and Elizabeth Copeland. Cauman's work in copper and enamel suggests the influence of these figures: stylized natural floral enamelwork decoration in circular or oval settings, often upon a lightly planished surface embellished only by lightly chased decoration - including petal-like segmentation such as that seen in further abstracted form on the lid of this box. Cauman remained active with the Society until 1927 when her metalwork was featured in the R.H. Macy "Exposition of Art in Trade" - an event which prompted her to move to New York with her sister and establish a retail shop on Madison Avenue. In 1937, her metalwork was exhibited in the Paris Exposition and in the exhibition "Contemporary Industrial and Handwrought Silver" at the Brooklyn Museum. Her shop remained open until the late 1940s when she retired from metalsmithing.

Drawn from

  • Kevin W. Tucker, DMA unpublished material, 2006

  • Janet Kardon, Craft in the Machine Age: The History of Twentieth-Century American Craft, 1920-1945 (New York: Abrams, 1995).