2015.0047.010 A Needlework picture, B Stretcher, view 2
  • 2015.0047.010 A Needlework picture, B Stretcher, view 2
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Needlework picture (Wool needlepoint)

  • Title:

    Chinese Dragon

  • Category:

    Textiles (Needlework)

  • Creator (Role):

    Erica Wilson (Designer and maker)

  • Place of Origin:

  • Materials:

    Wool; Canvas; Paint; Gold; Metallic thread

  • Techniques:

    Painted, Embroidered, Needlepoint, Woven (plain), Canvaswork

  • Museum Object Number:

    2015.0047.010 A

  • Complete Details

Object Number

2015.0047.010 A

Object Name

Needlework picture (Wool needlepoint)


Chinese Dragon


Textiles (Needlework)

Credit Line/Donor

Gift of The Family of Erica Wilson

Creator (Role)

Erica Wilson (Designer and maker)
October 8, 1928-December 13, 2011
Erica Wilson (1928-2011) is considered one of the most important leaders of the needlework revival in America in the 1960s, 70s and 80s. Born in England, she trained in traditional techniques of embroidery at the Royal School of Needlework in London and came to the United States in 1954. At that time she taught both privately and at the Cooper Union. Interest in high quality embroidery was rapidly growing in the 1950s. In addition to her teaching, Wilson provided designs to clients who included Mrs. Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., a close personal friend of Henry Francis and Ruth Wales du Pont. Winterthur's collection includes a sampler Roosevelt created in celebration of the du Pont's 25th wedding anniversary (1970.0563); her embroidery is also represented in the collection of the Smithsonian. Wilson married the furniture designer Vladimir Kagan in 1957, whose own prize-winning work is in the permanent collections of the V&A London, the Vitra Design Museum, and Die Neue Samlung in Germany as well as many museums in the United States. Erica Wilson published sixteen books on embroidery, hosted two PBS television shows (her studio in Boston was next to Julia Child's), wrote a nationally syndicated newspaper column, and organized correspondence courses. She had shops in New York (on Madison Avenue), Palm Beach, Southampton, and Nantucket; the latter continues to be operated by her daughter Vanessa Kagan Diserio. Selections from her television shows are newly available online through WGBH (http://openvault.wgbh.org/custom_collections/4#media), some of which feature embroideries included in this gift offer. As well as her own collection, Wilson often featured needlework from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston or the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities (now Historic New England) on her shows. Her work both looked to the past for inspiration and celebrated contemporary design.


Wool; Canvas; Paint; Gold; Metallic thread


Painted, Embroidered, Needlepoint, Woven (plain), Canvaswork

Construction Description

Hand-embroidered, hand-painted

Dimensions (inches)

30 (L) , 30 (W)

Dimensions (centimeters)

76.2 (L) , 76.2 (W)

Measurement Notes

wool on 12 count mono canvas

Object Description

Text available soon.

Bibliography and Bibliographic Notes

[Article] Beach, Laura. 03/09/2021 Erica Wilson: A Life In Stitches. Antiques and the Arts Weekly. 29-31.
Published: p. 30.