Object Timeline

1937

  • Work on this object began.

1947

  • Work on this object ended.

1963

  • We acquired this object.

2015

2019

Drawing, Stage Design: Backdrop, for "Checkmate", ca. 1947

This is a Drawing. It was designed by Edward McKnight Kauffer and music composed by Arthur Bliss and production directed by Ninette de Valois and made for (as the client) The Royal Opera House. It is dated ca. 1947 and we acquired it in 1963. Its medium is brush and gouache, graphite on heavy white paper. It is a part of the Drawings, Prints, and Graphic Design department.

Ninette de Valois founded the Vic Wells Ballet Company, which became the Sadler's Wells Ballet, now the National Ballet. Checkmate was first performed at the Theatre des Champs Elysees, Paris, in June, 1937, and in October at Sadler's Wells.

This object was donated by Mrs. Edward McKnight Kauffer. It is credited Gift of Mrs. E. McKnight Kauffer.

Its dimensions are

35.4 × 54.6 cm (13 15/16 × 21 1/2 in.)

It is signed

Signed in white gouache, lower right: E.McKnight Kauffer [partially underlined]

It is inscribed

Inscribed in white gouache, lower right: Act Curtain "Checkmate"; in graphite, upper center: TOP; upper left: 24 [circled]; on verso, center: M [cirlced]

Cite this object as

Drawing, Stage Design: Backdrop, for "Checkmate", ca. 1947; Music composed by Arthur Bliss (British, 1891–1975); USA; brush and gouache, graphite on heavy white paper; 35.4 × 54.6 cm (13 15/16 × 21 1/2 in.); Gift of Mrs. E. McKnight Kauffer; 1963-39-272

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If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18447597/ |title=Drawing, Stage Design: Backdrop, for "Checkmate", ca. 1947 |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=9 December 2019 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>