Appreciating the Beauty of Life: Joan and Bernard Spain
Joan and Bernard Spain appreciate the beauty of life—all that engages the mind, touches the heart, and delights the eye—and work to ensure that its possibilities are available to everyone. Together, they have forged accomplished professional lives, nurtured a caring and committed family, actively supported a broad roster of worthy causes, and pursued their passionate interests in art and design. This was celebrated with the opening of the Joan Spain Gallery for Costume and Textiles in the Perelman Building, dedicated by Mr. Spain in honor of his wife. Mr. and Mrs. Spain are native Philadelphians. Mr. Spain’s father was a grocer in the Strawberry Mansion neighborhood, not far from the Museum. Mrs. Spain’s father was in the furniture business, inspiring in her a lifelong interest in interior design, textiles, and furniture styles. The couple began collecting art shortly after they wed. Their artistic interests include sculpture, Art Deco furniture, Chinese and Japanese antiquities, American painting, and more. But it’s their shared enthusiasm for fashion that has most involved them with the Museum. "Fashion is clothing, and that’s something that everyone can relate to," notes Mrs. Spain. "It’s a form of self-expression. And we have enormous respect for fashion designers. A successful designer has to be a talented artist and an astute businessperson."
Joan and Bernard Spain
“ Fashion is clothing, and that’s something that everyone can relate to... ” — Joan Spain
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