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Curtis Jere is a compound nom-de-plume of artists Curtis Freiler and Jerry Fels. The two founders combined pieces of their own names to create the C. Jere signature. Modernism magazine interviewed Jerry Fels shortly before his death in October 2008. According to the resulting article in the Spring 2007 issue of Modernism magazine page 116, the company was founded in 1963 by Fels and his brother-in-law Curtis (Kurt) Freiler. Freiler was the production chief and Fels was head of design. Their goal was to produce "gallery-quality art for the masses". Matisse, which employed around 300 people at one point. Kurt and Jerry sold Artisan House in 1972.
CreatorCurtis Jere (Artist)
Of the Period
Place of Origin
Date of Manufacturecirca 1980
Seller LocationFt. Lauderdale, FL
Number of Items1
About Curtis Jere (Artist)
Though the name Curtis Jeré is familiar to many as the maker of ebullient and eccentric modern design from the 1960s and ‘70s, relatively few are aware that it is a pseudonym for the design team of Curtis Freiler and Jerry Fels. Together, the two created some of the most striking and vivid furnishings and decorative objects of their era, from sculptures and dynamically framed mirrors, to lighting and wall decorations.
New Yorkers Freiler and Fels had collaborated for two decades on small jewelry lines before launching a design company called Artisan House in 1964. They combined variants of their names to create an artful persona — sometimes shortened to C. Jeré; the "surname" is pronounced with a rising inflection: jhayr-EH — that stood behind large-scale decorative metalwork, marked by semi-abstract petal forms with burnt and brazed edges. Fels served as head of design, and Freiler, known for his keen handiwork, was the production chief. The pair’s eclectic metalwork has captivated decorative art collectors and interior designers ever since.
The work of Curtis Jeré displays a sense of playfulness and curiosity, while drawing on inspirations and themes that include flowers, discs, geometric forms and animal figures. Freiler and Fels had a masterful ability to work with different materials, such as patinated brass and brilliant chrome.
The price of a Curtis Jeré mirror, lamp, wall-mounted sculpture or tabletop sculpture can range from $400 - $12,000, depending on the size, the rarity of the piece, the intricacy of the metalwork and the materials used in its construction. Other factors like condition can affect the perceived value and, thus, the cost of works by Curtis Jeré. As you will see on these pages, the imaginative powers of the designers of Curtis Jeré pieces were boundless, and their creations will add a dash of verve in any room.
1stdibs seller since 2016
Typical response time: 1 hour
Located in Ft. Lauderdale, FL