Our museum founder, Pat Arnell, commissioned master miniaturist Brooke Tucker to create this roombox, primarily to be a grand display for the exceptional drafting table and tools made by renowned artisan, Bill Robertson. The concept for the room was inspired by the Russian-born painter Romain de Tirtoff, one of the foremost fashion and stage designers of the early twentieth century, more widely known as Erté, after the French pronunciation of his initials, R and T. The room is designed in the Art Deco style of Erté’s early career and features his fashion designs in wall displays.
Brooke Tucker grew up in California as the daughter of actor, Forrest Tucker. The stage sets were her playground, and their design and construction made a lasting impression. Brooke Tucker's niche in the world of miniatures is undisputed. A Master Miniaturist with a vision for the unique, Brooke retired in 2006 after creating miniatures for 30 years.
All of Bill Robertson’s fine scale masterpieces in this room box are fully functional, including the architectural stool and drafting table. The stool and tableare exact miniature replicas of ones manufactured by Keuffel & EsserCo., an American drafting instrument company founded in 1867. The seat can be raised and lowered, and the stool can roll on its steel casters.The drafting table can raise up and down and tilt, using the same gear and rack mechanisms as its full- scale counterpart.The waste basket was also made by Robertson, requiring 1,020 solder joints to complete. On the drafting table,take note of Robertson’s replica antique pencil sharpener. Commonly referred to as “the donut,” this style of sharpener was patented by the Goodell Co. in 1890 as the Perfect Pencil Pointer. Inserting the pencil vertically into the hole of the “donut” and sliding it back and forth along the bar rotated the pencil along the file at the base. Can you spot his perfectly scaled – and completely functional! – pencil and eraser?
You can find more exquisite works by Bill Robertson in our collection, as well as several magnificent room boxes by Brooke Tucker.