Walter Scott Lenox & American Belleek

September 23, 2023 - January 21, 2024

Mint Museum Randolph


Delicacy, superb craftmanship, technical virtuosity, and many quirky shapes are defining qualities of the featured 19th-century porcelain works.

The exhibition presents the elegance of America’s Gilded Age and the artistic influence of Walter Scott Lenox through 80 objects on loan from notable public and private U.S. collections and the Mint’s own holdings.

Objects include a coffeepot with satiny ivory glaze and raised gold-paste decoration, a tête-à-tête set whose individual components are so thin you can see through them, beautifully modeled ewers and hand-painted vases, as well as a superb mirror frame encrusted with fully three-dimensional, handcrafted flowers.

The eggshell-thin, yet extremely durable porcelain was first manufactured in the village of Belleek in Northern Ireland but achieved new aesthetic heights in the United States during the late 19th century thanks to the vision and talent of Walter Scott Lenox.

In a time of conspicuous consumption and ostentatious living for affluent, fashion-conscious consumers, Walter Scott Lenox created a business focused solely on making ceramics of high artistic merit in a refined Belleek-type porcelain. High-end retailers throughout the country also ordered pieces from his factory.

Curated by Brian Gallagher, the Mint’s senior curator of decorative arts, The Mint Museum is the exhibition’s only venue.  

Related Events

The works on view in this exhibition represent some of the finest porcelain objects produced during America’s Gilded Age. I believe that our visitors will be as captivated by their beauty and technical virtuosity as I am.

– Brian Gallagher, senior curator of decorative arts

Explore more

Thank you to our sponsors

Plan Your Visit

Find hours, tickets, and accessibility information to make your museum visit the best experience.

Image Captions

View all image captions