silver preferred teapot by Harriete Estel Berman from recycled tin cans.

Teapot is elliptical-shaped and seamed using multiple panels of tin-plated steel from the bottom of recycled tin cans, embossed monogram on side from recycled popcorn tin bottom. This teapot styled after the 19th century teapots that used the technical innovation of its time  - sterling silver sheet. This profoundly influenced the designs of it's time.  My teapot has a separate lid that is domed with flange, embossed with manufacturer’s monogram “Shucks” from tin can bottom. Underneath the lid, the top says: "TIN AND LID RETURNABLE  CHARGED 2/ APPLIES TO UK ONLY"

Below you can see a close-up images of the handle. and on the side


The handle was carved from a 200 year old piece of scrap wood by Harriete Estel Berman duplicating the forms of the wooden handle on the original Paul Revere Teapot.  The slanting sockets with sterling silver wire trim hold the carved, maple wood scroll handle. 
The monogram on the side of the teapot is important to the meaning behind this sculpture. In Revere’s day, a monogram on the side of a teapot proved ownership and made silver hollowware difficult to steal or be sold without a trace.  It was a relatively safe way to store one’s wealth when banks were unstable, private enterprises.  In “Silver” Preferred, the monogram is the embossed trademark of the product from the tin can. The market value of the trademark reflects the values of our consumer society. 

Today, where does artistic concept and content fit into the question of value?  Is “silver” preferred  as a medium for the same reasons as 200 years ago?  What does it mean to own a sterling silver teapot in the 20th century?  Is silver a store of value or a symbol of value?  Changing values transform our society.  Changing society transforms our values.

The Pineapple finial on the lid was constructed from recycled tin, sterling silver wire, and ball. 

8.5” height including finial   x   10” height of wood handles   x   18.5” length spout to handle

Private Collection         

Photo Credit for all images on this page:  Philip Cohen