March 11, 2010 |
Call it art appreciation as battle royal. The emotionally charged new documentary "The Art of the Steal: The Untold Story of the Barnes Collection" takes what might otherwise have remained a local matter of consequence only to art aficionados and blue bloods -- the decision to move a valuable art collection from an affluent Philadelphia suburb into the city's downtown area -- and presents the legal tussle and decades-spanning tug of war surrounding the...
May 24, 2001 |
THE ARTS Less-Seen Barnes Works Will Tour The Barnes Foundation has won a court order allowing it to have seldom-seen paintings, many in storage for up to 50 years, displayed at other museums. The tour, the first since a mid-1990s traveling show of better-known Barnes paintings that drew record crowds worldwide, will be limited to works kept in storage and hung in the cash-strapped educational foundation's administrative offices.
March 13, 2011 |
Is the new Barnes Museum headed for disaster? Designed to house the art collection of the Barnes Foundation, with its hundreds of Cezannes, Renoirs, Matisses, Picassos and other early modern masters, a new building is under construction in downtown Philadelphia where the collection is scheduled to move from its current home in Merion, Pa. Yet serious questions remain about the rationale for the move and the museum's long-term sustainability. The direct and indirect costs of the move downtown, including site clearance and construction, the provision of a new endowment and a substantial inducement to the Barnes' previous administrator, Lincoln University, to relinquish majority control of its board of trustees, is $300 million to $400 million.
May 4, 2007 |
As a profession, architecture has never included many refuseniks, those who decline to work for a particular client out of principle. Architects by nature believe in the power of the new to improve upon the old or even redeem it. Often they think that a building, if completed with enough skill, can make irrelevant the question of whom it was designed for or what it replaces.
December 12, 2003 |
Albert C. Barnes always had very specific ideas about his art collection. He amassed an astonishing cache of paintings, including 181 Renoirs, 69 Cezannes, 60 Matisses, 44 Picassos, 18 Rousseaus and 14 Modiglianis, and had a bridge constructed to connect his house to the building that contained them. According to Barnes lore, when he couldn't sleep he padded across it in his robe and slippers and tweaked the arrangement of his treasures.
September 3, 2002 |
Inside the Barnes Foundation, a French Renaissance chateau set in a fenced arboretum on Philadelphia's western shoulder, hangs one of the world's most spectacular art collections. Masterpieces are displayed literally from floor to ceiling: Cezanne's "Bathers" and "The Card Players," Seurat's "Models," Van Gogh's signed "Postman." The gallery is so crammed with priceless works that Matisse's "Joy of Life" is confined to a stairwell. The Musee d'Orsay in Paris owns 94 works by Renoir.
June 10, 2012 |
PHILADELPHIA - Philadelphia, the city that gave us Poor Richard, cheese-steak sandwiches and the American Constitution, just opened a new treasure: the Barnes Foundation, one of the premier privately assembled collections of painting in the U.S. with more dreamy Renoirs and searching Cézannes than in the whole of France. Its arrival in May halfway between the landmark City Hall and Museum of Art on Benjamin Franklin Parkway - Philly's Champs Élysées - gives visitors a chance to see what was once an almost secret stash of great art. The catalog is astounding, even apart from Renoirs and Cézannes: "The Joy of Life" and "The Dance," by Matisse, Seurat's "The Models," Van Gogh's "The Postman," Manets, Modiglianis, Sisleys, Picassos and more than a dozen Henri "Le Douanier" Rousseaus, all previously hard to access, thanks in part to the collection's former home in Merion, a 45-minute bus ride from downtown.
May 31, 2005 |
By the time Charles Wilson Peale was the driving force behind the 1805 opening of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, the country's first art museum, folks already looked at the painter as art's eccentric. He had searched for mastodons, collected odd animal bones, named his children after artists (Rembrandt, Titian and Raphaelle, among them) and had a personal menagerie of wild animals.
May 28, 2011 |
Even with the economic recovery limping along, American museums keep planning, raising piles of money for and opening new wings. An architecture critic — at least one with a high tolerance for the work of Renzo Piano — could conceivably keep busy writing about these projects and nothing else. There's the Whitney Museum's recent agreement to lease its 1966 Marcel Breuer-designed building to the Metropolitan Museum of Art while it erects a massive new home (designed by Piano, naturally)