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Museum News

Looking Forward to Spring?

Escape Into the Imaginative World of Garden Follies

at Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library.

April 1, 2018

Garden Folly, Needle's Eye in a Pond

A needle’s eye in a pond, a Greek temple in the garden, an Ottoman tent sitting on a hill—these are just a few of the inspirations for our upcoming, first-ever outdoor exhibition Follies: Architectural Whimsy in the Garden. The exhibition showcases whimsical and classic garden structures located throughout the Winterthur estate.

Follies are architectural constructions, often extravagant or picturesque, positioned within the landscape to amuse, frame a view, or pique your curiosity. Some of the follies you will see in the exhibition were created or procured by H.F. du Pont as he developed the garden. Others are newly built structures inspired by follies at other estates. Together they offer a fresh and delightful way for visitors to experience Winterthur’s sweeping vistas, quiet corners, and winding paths.



Frauds. Fakes. Trickery. Deceit!

From April 1, 2017 Through January 7, 2018

Winterthur Galleries, Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library, Delaware

Counterfeit confiscated vintage wine labels Put on your CSI hat and investigate some of the most clever and costliest deceptions of our time—more than 40 forgeries and counterfeit objects, from art to wine to fashion—in the captivating exhibition Treasures on Trial: The Art and Science of Detecting Fakes. Learn the beguiling tales behind these fakes—many of which have been at the center of major scandals and court cases! See how science is deployed to reveal the truth behind these clever shams, and how the experts answer the question, “Is it real or fake?”

Image: collection of confiscated vintage wine labels; courtesy of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Office; private collection; courtesy of Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library website.



Documenting Our Lives, Exhibit Opens at Winterthur Library.

Winterthur Library’s new exhibit features documents from The Joseph Downs Collection of Manuscripts and Printed Ephemera that shed light on the lives of our ancestors, and in many instances add to the genealogical record. For Documenting Our Lives, names on the exhibited documents were searched in Ancestry.com, a genealogical website, to see what could be learned about the people. The exhibit is on display at Winterthur Museum from August 8 – October 24, 2016.



Illustration: Illuminated birth record for Jacob Mayer, 1789. Courtesy of Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library.

Jeanne Solensky, Librarian, The Joseph Downs Collection of Manuscripts and Printed Ephemera, notes that Winterthur Library staff were able to identify the keeper of one manuscript account book as Sebre Gustin, Sr., because the birthdates of his grandchildren were recorded in his volume. Other kinds of records exhibited include: marriage certificates, a bill for a tombstone (a photo of which was found online); a seaman’s papers, rewards of merit for schoolchildren, manumission papers for Elizabeth Toomey, a Delaware slave; real estate papers; a list of Waldoboro, Maine, residents who were licensed to sell liquor or operate inns; and the covenant signed by members of the Shaker community at Mount Lebanon, New York. All of these documents shed light on the lives and work undertaken by our ancestors.


American Women Illustrators, 1880s-1930s.

On display in the Winterthur Library from May through August is an exhibit focusing on women artists in The Golden Age of IllustraEdna-Cooke-Shoemakertion.  This period flourished for several decades beginning in the 1880s due to rapid improvements in printing that led to inexpensive reproduction of art in mass market publishing, national advertising campaigns, and a multitude of ephemera.   With many of these targeted to women and children, publishers often turned to female artists to illustrate them.  Coinciding with art schools like the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art opening classes to female students, commercial art became an acceptable and lucrative career for women.  Artists like Maud Humphrey, Alice Barber Stephens, Rose O’Neill, and Jessie Willcox Smith enjoyed a high level of visibility through signed work and distinctive styles.  The show features children’s books, magazine covers and illustrations, paper dolls, postcards, and Edna Cooke Shoemaker’s original drawings for Heidi and Mother Goose.  Their artwork, focusing on scenes of everyday life and engaging subjects, still resonates today.  Below are study scans of items prior to installation:  a photo of Edna Cooke working on a drawing for “Mother Goose” – the slipcase for the book – and an original drawing for it; a Kewpie New Year’s postcard by Rose O’Neill; and a postcard by Jessie Willcox Smith.



  NPR Philadelphia affiliate WHYY/Newsworks features Made in the Americas:  The New World Discovers Asia.

 Winterthur Museum portrays history of globalization in traveling  exhibit open through January 8, 2017.  As related on Newswork.org:

“Made in the Americas: The New World Discovers Asia,” which runs through January 8, 2017 in the museum’s galleries, takes a fresh look at globalization as it explores the impact of Asian styles on American designs in the colonial Americas.

The landmark display is the first large-scale Pan-American exhibition of its kind. More than 80 works—including fine furniture, textiles, ceramics, silverwork and paintings dating from the 17th to the early 19th centuries—illustrate the complex story of how craftsmen throughout the hemisphere adapted Asian sensibility to their art.

The exhibition features works from Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts, Winterthur and on loan from public and private collections. Many are on display for the first time.

“This is the first exhibit of its kind to explore the influence of Asia in the colonial Americas,” says exhibit curator Dennis Carr. “Globalization had its roots in the 16th century. America became the hub of trade activity—silk textiles from China, cotton from India, ivories from Goa and the Philippines. Then artists began creating hybrid product. The Americas became a melting pot in the 16th century. This exhibition shows globalization through the eyes of artists.”

Carr graduated from the Winterthur Program in American Material Culture, before receiving his doctorate degree from Yale and  is the Carolyn and Peter Lynch Curator of American Decorative Arts and Sculpture at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.

Carr says “Made in the Americas” presents a history not taught in schools. His research is prompting scholars to reevaluate curricula relative to the period.

For complete text or podcast: http://www.newsworks.org/index.php/delaware/item/92830-winterthur-museum-brings-history-of-globalization-to-delaware

Dennis Carr

“During a recent presentation, Carr, now the Carolyn and Peter Lynch Curator of American Decorative Arts and Sculpture at the Boston museum, said that not only was it an honor for him to come full circle, but Winterthur offered the perfect venue to continue the first large-scale, Pan-American exhibition to examine the profound influence of Asia on the arts of the colonial Americas.

Visitors who regard globalism as a modern phenomenon – fueled by economics or the Internet – will quickly find that the exhibit upends that view. It provides compelling, visual evidence that despite the thousands of miles and many-month voyages centuries ago that separated the Americas from Asia, its influence proved pervasive and lasting.” excerpted from Chaddsfordlive.com   http://chaddsfordlive.com/2016/04/09/winterthur-exhibit-an-elegant-global-showcase/

Made in the Americas: The New World Discovers Asia

March 26, 2016–January 8, 2017

Made in the Americas: The New World Discovers Asia examines the profound influence of Asia on the arts of the colonial Americas and the roots of globalization beginning in the 16th century. Featuring some of the most extraordinary objects produced in the Americas, this scholarly exhibition is the first, Pan-American study to explore how craftsmen across North, Central, and South America adapted Asian styles in a range of

Desk-on-stand 18th century
media—from furniture to silverwork, textiles, ceramics, and painting. Exquisite objects from Mexico City, Lima, Quito, Boston, New York, and Philadelphia, dating from the 17th to the early 19th centuries, include folding screens made in Mexico in imitation of imported Japanese and Chinese screens, blue and white talavera ceramics copied from imported Chinese porcelains, and luxuriously woven textiles made to replicate fine silks and cottons imported from China and India.

*Related educational programming and lecture information at www.winterthur.org

For complete admission information see visit Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library

This entry was posted in Museum News.

Winterthur Program in American Material Culture
University of Delaware   •   Newark, DE 19716   •   USA
Phone: (302) 831-2678

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