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"the truth about Curtis Jere'...C. Jere'... Curtis Jere"

- 10 Jul 2008 -
23 posts / 0 new

I've been curious about the mysterious C. Jere. The quality of the metal work is all over the map; 'boy running with balloon' at JC Penny's, etc. Some of the more interesting wall pieces fetch some high prices on e-bay. I've not ever wanted one, but saw a pair of bookends this morning... Found this info on a forum while searching. (i've added the link to the forum discussion below)

26-Jul-06 Curtis Jere' is a compound non-de-plume for a design group formed and directed by Jerry Fels for their company Artisan House . The company was formed by Jerry Fels and Curtis Freiler and has since been sold and resold. Prior to Artisan House, the partners built a costume jewelry business selling work under the names Renoir and Matisse which employed around 300 people at one point. Jerry Fels specialized in design and sales, Mr Freiler ran production. Both men are still quite alive. A number of different artists contributed designs that were produced under the C. Jere' name. Hope this helps clear things up .....

Peter Fels >the JERE of Curtis Jere is VERY MUCH ALIVE >---living as JERRY FELS. > >he is my great uncle. ... living in California >his son, peter fels, is also a sculpter... > > 21-Dec-07 First...... There is NO C Jere'... It's the fictional name signed on the art produced by Artisan House, a company co-founded by my father Jerry Fels and uncle Kurt Freiler. They sold the company years ago. Kurt did the production and was extremely facile. My father did design, sales, etc. After the company grew large enough, father began to bring in and direct other contributing artists. Jerry Fels passed on ,on the 5th of November, 07 after a short illness. He had a long, full and actively productive life. He was a man of determination,talent and unusual integrity. And...he made a hole on 1 golfing in his last, 90th year! Can't help but be proud of him. I write this because; We are in the process of liquidating his art collection, sadly. There are some early Artisan House pieces. There are a number of pieces that were submitted by artists to Artisan House for consideration by for incorporation into the line. There are a number of prototypes made in house, not all of them were later actually produced...including castings in aluminum alloy and bronze...mostly finished, mounted sculptures. There is also his personal collection of art in general...(some of which has already gone to the Bonham & Butterfield auction house) ....including paintings ( some by my parents), prints and a number of figure studies my father had done over the years. Any guidance you might offer as to how sell these pieces, in the best possible way ,would certainly be appreciated. in sadness...peter fels >



- 18 Nov 2010

My sympathies on the loss of your father
I have just discovered your fathers work in Renoir & Matisse copper jewelry. I am not an artist whatsoever, but instantly fell in love with Jerry Fels design. I have just purchased Renoir leaf pattern necklace, bracelet and earring set. I love this more than any other piece of jewelry, except of course for my wedding ring.

I am glad to hear, he lead a full and rewarding life, and including the heartfelt message from his son. I didn't even know my father and would of loved to have had one period especially one I could of been proud of like you. As he mastered his craft, I am sure he mastered his upbringing of his children, in becoming the very best that you can be.

- 18 Nov 2010

I have a question about a scupture...
I recently acquired the sculpture pictured above ("gold" Raindrops) the problem is; it is starting to rust how can I stop or prevent this? Thank you for reading this.

- 18 Nov 2010

To prevent oxidation of the brass, I think you'd have to clearcoat the sculpture. That'll have some effect -- probably negative -- on the value of the piece, and of course the clear paint will crack when you bend any of the wires. Maybe just resign yourself to carefully cleaning and polishing the thing periodically? Or just learn to appreciate the "patina"? Artisan House recently reissued the sculpture for Jonathan Adler; it's available in "antiqued" brass as well as chrome, but I doubt that "antiqued" means "rusted"... I wonder whether they do anything to those new sculptures to keep the brass from oxidizing. Might be worth a call to ask about care and cleaning: Artisan House - 203 563-0017 customerservice at

- 18 Nov 2010

That is the one, thank you for your response. I think I continue to lightly clean, the patina is beautiful. Thank you again.

- 13 Dec 2010

How to clean
I have a late 60's Curtis jere custom wall lamp, it is one-of-a-kind. It is beautiful, lots of colors, but it is dark, and doesn't have the same shine as the more famous raindrop pieces though it is from that era and features and has more organic look. Like a log full of mushrooms.

I intend to sell it but I want to give it a cleaning and general polish up. It looks like it was copper and steel with enameling and some kinda shiny gold liquid painted onto some of the mushrooms.

what should I be using to clean it???polish? should I polish each metal type with something different?

- 13 Dec 2010

If you are selling it DO NOT TOUCH IT!!! any restoration you may do could alter the price.

People always sand down or refinish items just before they sell only tofind out the work they have done has wiped hundreds of the price.

- 13 Dec 2010

Yeah, don't even CONSIDER going at it with metal polish!
People like patinas on old metal.

You may THINK that polishing would be furthering your aim to successfully sell it ("all bright an' shiny, like new!"), but you'd actually be shooting yourself in the foot. Fifty years of patina doesn't happen overnight; once it's gone, it's gone.

Dust it with a rag if you're ashamed of the cobwebs. Do nothing else to it.

- 04 Sep 2011

C.Jeré 1980 to 2011: BJ Keith
Jerry Fels was my mother's mentor and very close friend and she his protogé. He brought her into the Artisan House in 1980 with her first sculpture, a can opener for the Gourmet Kitchen line. From there, she quickly moved into non-objective Fine Art metal sculpture. She remained close friends with Jerry Fels until he passed, and he came to California to her housewarming of the new home she designed in either 2008 or 09 (can't remember). Since 1980, my mother, BJ Keith did 90% of the artwork/metal sculptures bearing the C.Jeré name at Artisan House. Please refer to my blog for her story. (Go back to my blog posts starting in 2008. Jerry Fels remains forever dear to my mother in spirit and inspiration.


- 30 May 2013

question bought what is obviously a C. Jere today. However, I cannot find a signature. Are all of them marked? It came out of an older house so I cannot think it's a fake?

- 31 May 2013

I found in ANOTHER Design Addict thread (it's all here....somewhere...) that about 1/2 of them were unsigned.

- 31 May 2013

I wouldn't say that it's obv...
I wouldn't say that it's obvious that that one's a C. Jere, I'd actually guess that it's probably not, it seems a touch sparse. I wouldn't call it a "fake" either though, it's just a freeform metal wall sculpture.

Artisan House is very good quality construction-wise, though not always concept-wise; they make conceptually tacky representative "theme" type pieces too, like sandals, martini glasses, etc.

- 31 May 2013

thanks for the response
well, I did compare it to other pieces and found a couple of near identical, right down to the dimensions, welds, etc. These were attributed to Jere and sold as such.

I think that the piece is at an angle makes it look more sparse

Not a huge fan I must say. I do have a metal sculpture over my fireplace but it is a Marc Creates, not a Jere.

here's a link for a twin for instance

- 15 Sep 2013

Jere Golden Gate signed and dated 1971
I just bought a Golden Gate sculpture by C Jere at a garage sale. It is dated 1971. I have found it online priced from $10 to $450. Very confused. Does the date of the piece add anything to its value or history?

- 15 Sep 2013

The price range heavily depends on the style of the bridge, dimensions, condition, and age together.

- 29 Jun 2015

Have become fascinated by C Jere' Trio of Birds in Flight Eagles. Described as a floor sculpture yet was also told that it moves in the wind. Does that mean it can be used outside as a garden sculpture? Reminds me of Caldor's work. I know of three of these Trio of Birds sculptures, 2 signed and one attributed to C Jere' but unsigned. Obviously, attributed but unsigned must reduce value, correct?

- 29 Jun 2015

Here is a pic of mine. It's been outside for over 15 years and I've never seen it "move in the wind".
Knocked over by deer and blown over by wind, but it's not exactly a weathervane (although it will turn at the base connection).

- 29 Jun 2015

Onewildandcrazyguy, you have made my day with this pic! Thanks! "Move in the wind" meant wobble but not rotate--but wouldn't that be fantastic! My questions are many:

-Is yours signed, and if so, is it signed only on the base someplace? (Base of yours looks different, nicer, than one I recently saw.)
-Deer huh…do you live in a colder/cooler, snow in winter climate for the ones I know about are in California and Florida only?
-Any idea about how many were made?
-Have they been reproduced by Jonathan Adler Company?

Any answers would be most appreciated.

- 29 Jun 2015

I think it was signed on the base at one point but its long gone. My experience witht the signatures are that they are easily "wiped away" when/if they are cleaned.

Yes, I live in Michigan...Kalamazoo to be exact. Deer aplenty. The bucks tend to get a little aggressive with it. There was a family of 3 red fox this morning playing aroind it:)

No idea of numbers and no idea if they have been reproduced...sorry.

I've seen them in chrome if I'm not mistaken...this one has a nice layer of rust on it from the exposure, I leave it out year round.

Sorry I couldn't be more help.

- 29 Jun 2015

No, you were extremely helpful with info. The one I came across AT A BARN SALE here in western NY originally came from Florida, some woman who had a TV cooking show long before Julia Childs, as the story goes. (Want to find out who that was.) The person having the barn sale had reduced the price to $159 since it was unsigned. I called this morning after getting your info and pic and negotiated the price down to $120!!!! Picking it up late afternoon today!! SCORED!!!! Your pic convinced me I needed it for my shade garden. Thanks so much. Lost sleep over this last night!! Think I'll take a nap!!! Again, thank you for your help.

- 04 Aug 2015

Hi! I'm new to this forum, so your help is greatly appreciated. I purchased this piece over the weekend at a flea market in Texas for 50 cents. After doing some research I've realized that this could be a C. Jere. Can someone please direct me to who can authenticate this? Or have you seen this before? Although, in very bad shape I thought it was beautiful.

- 30 Jan 2017

Hello. This thread appears done, but if anyone has any input, it would be greatly appreciated. I have this C. Jere signed wall sculpture that I purchased off of eBay some 18 years ago. Over the years, I've never been able to find anything similar online, and wondered if anyone knew anything about it? I always thought it may have been an early prototype or something, since I don't believe it was produced in quantity. It's heavy, sturdy, large (roughly 60"x27"), and appears to be very old (though it's not dated). It also has a signature that matches, and has various colors of enamel placed throughout. I never felt it was a forgery, due to it's appearance of age, and it was purchased at a time when these items and MCM were not that popular. It just seems that replicating the age, etc., wouldn't have been worth the time for someone based on what I paid for it...but I love it, and wouldn't care if it was. Thanks for any input!

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