Hanging Pie Safe
Tin hanging pie safe / pierced tin and wood / c. late 19th century
Antique pierced tin pie safe with interior wooden shelves, c. late 19th century. This primitive cabinet was designed to hang by rope or chains from a ceiling, protecting food (e.g. pies) from flies, farm animal critters, and enterprising family dogs. This pie safe is exceptional for its sculptural, almost modernist design. The tin is pierced in concentric circles, but rather than applied to the wood frame in the typically centered fashion, it is nailed on like wrapping paper, the pierced patterns taking on compelling asymmetrical compositions on each side. Lit from within by a lamp, the piece becomes an atmospheric illuminated sculpture, further underscoring its remarkably contemporary artistic presence.
The piece has old iron hooks embedded in the frame (see pictures) which were used to hang the shelves. The hooks are bent over, but still could be fashioned to hang the piece as it was originally intended. However, the most practical use would be to position the pie safe on top of another cabinet (think kitchen!) or add a glass or wood surface over the tin top of the piece, which cannot sustain much weight on its own.
Condition-wise, the primitive piece shows its age and has a beautiful antique patina. The tin is worn and bent in places, with a few small weak spots due to corrosion from many years tucked away in a farm outbuilding. Inside the piece, I had my carpenter replace missing shelves with sturdy antique barn boards, which can support significant weight.
Found in a Pennsylvania farmhouse, this antique pie safe begs repurposing and would work just as well in a traditional or contemporary design scheme.
Well-worn condition, with several places where the tin is weak or bent, a few rust spots, but altogether the piece has a handsome and timeworn patina.
Shipping is not included for this item due to size. Please contact me for a shipping quote.