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September 25th, 2002
Comprehensive Catalogue Presents Over 200 Major Gifts of Art to Museum

As the capstone to its 125th Anniversary celebration, the Philadelphia Museum of Art has published a book surveying the remarkable range of objects that have been acquired, both as gifts from generous donors and as purchases made possible by funds raised for the purpose of enhancing the Museum's collections. From a Japanese earthenware jar that dates to 2500–1500 B.C. to a recently completed painting by Jasper Johns, the new acquisitions expand and strengthen the Museum's collections by virtue of their exceptional variety, quality, and importance. GIFTS IN HONOR OF THE 125th ANNIVERSARY OF THE PHILADELPHIA MUSEUM OF ART is a handsome volume (Philadelphia Museum of Art, October 15, 2002) that accompanies the exhibition on view at the Museum from September 29 to December 8, 2002.

Organized chronologically with poetic license in the pairing of works of art from different cultures or countries, the book presents a selection of over two hundred works in full color with informative entries on each object by the Museum’s curators and other art historians. Among the gifts are major paintings by Claude Monet, Andrew Wyeth, and Jacob Lawrence; a dazzling 27-foot-long Japanese scroll by Hon’ami Kōetsu; an 11-foot-tall column decorated with iridescent glass by Louis Comfort Tiffany; a royal seat from the Ivory Coast; an upholstered easy chair that is one of the masterpieces of eighteenth-century Philadelphia cabinetry; and the finest marble portrait bust of Benjamin Franklin, by Jean-Antoine Houdon. Also featured are photographs, drawings, prints, decorative arts, and elegant clothing by contemporary designers, including late twentieth-century avant-garde menswear from the collection of John Cale, a founding member of the Velvet Underground.

In addition to commentary by thirty prominent art scholars, GIFTS IN HONOR OF THE 125th ANNIVERSARY OF THE PHILADELPHIA MUSEUM OF ART offers an insightful introduction by Museum Trustee Harvey S. Shipley Miller, Chairman of the Museum's Committee for Collections 2001, that outlines the ambitious anniversary campaign for gifts. Also included is a thoughtful foreword by Anne d'Harnoncourt, Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Museum, along with an essay by Danielle Rice, Associate Director of Program for the Museum, that illuminates the human spirit behind collecting and gift-giving. The book concludes with an illustrated checklist of all the Museum's anniversary acquisitions.

Organized by Alice Beamesderfer
216 pages, 207 color plates, 33 black-and-white illustrations
$32.00 cloth, ISBN: 0-87633-159-2
$26.00 paperback, ISBN: 0-87633-160-6

Publication date: October 15, 2002

Available at the Museum Store, by calling (800) 329-4856, or by visiting the Museum’s Online Store at
Distributed to the trade through the Antique Collectors’ Club
Published on the occasion of the exhibition of the same name
Philadelphia Museum of Art
September 29-December 8, 2002

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