Larger Type
Smaller Type

Search Collections

Kiss the Cook

1992-1993 Tommy Simpson Born: Elgin, Illinois 1939 constructed spalted maple, English oak, figured soft maple, lacewood, cherry, walnut, mahogany, and bone 67 x 28 x 21 in. (170.2 x 71.1 x 53.3 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of Daphne Farago © 1993, Tommy Simpson 2000.94 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 4th Floor, 55A

Luce Center Quote

"One of the acts of artists is to delight people." The artist, quoted in Pamela Koob, Tommy Simpson, 1993

Luce Center Label

Tommy Simpson designed this cupboard for the kitchen of a private residence in Key West, Florida. He carved on the front "Don’t forget to kiss the cook. It’s an old family recipe," a saying he heard from the patron of this cupboard. Simpson frequently incorporates words into his pieces to (depending on the situation) entertain, critique, or give the viewer something to contemplate. In Kiss the Cook, the use of words familiar to the patron personalizes an object intended for a room that has become a popular gathering place and the focal point in the modern home. The cabinet is further customized with references to Key West's island location: a wave pattern adorns the bottom and two fish "swim" along the front. Simpson has even carved the two front legs in the form of fish. The door at the top opens to reveal a small table and four miniature paintings, essentially rendering this part of the cupboard unusable for storage. This delightful surprise, however, is indicative of Simpson's work, as close examination is often rewarded with unexpected results.


Object - written matter

decorative arts

Crafts - Wood

About Tommy Simpson

Born: Elgin, Illinois 1939

More works in the collection by
Tommy Simpson