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First-Ever Exhibition of Art and Archival Artifact Highlights from Drexel’s Collections to go on Display April 12

April 04, 2013

"The Wissahickon" (1872) by William Trost Richards will be featured in the exhibition

For the first time in Drexel University’s history, the most treasured works of art and archival artifacts from around the University will be exhibited together during A Legacy of Art, Science & Industry: Highlights from the Collections of Drexel University.

Approximately 90 objects spanning the 15th through 20th centuries, including paintings, sculptures, prints and drawings, rare books, historical documents, political posters, historical costumes and even a surgical amputation kit, will be on display.

The exhibition will be open to public and free of charge from Friday, April 12 through Friday, May 31 in the newly expanded Leonard Pearlstein Gallery (3401 Filbert Street), part of Drexel’s Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts & Design. Gallery hours are Monday – Saturday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

An opening reception will take place Friday, April 19, beginning at 5 p.m. Remarks will be made by Drexel’s President John A. Fry and Allen Sabinson, dean of the Westphal College.


 "Shakespeare" (c.1880)
by Albert Ernest Carrier-Belleuse

“This exhibition beautifully brings together examples of creativity and craftsmanship that have been preserved throughout the university for generations,” said Dr. Luther Weldon Brady, Jr., honorary chair of the exhibition. “I’m thrilled to be a part of making this collection available, and fulfilling the personal and historic role of collections in the life of the university: to illuminate the past and to inform and inspire new generations.” 

Included in the exhibition are a letter from Ulysses S. Grant to Anthony J. Drexel indicating their close friendship, borrowed from the Drexel University Archives; the Drexel Collection’s painting by the well-known French artist Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot; items from the Westphal College’s Historic Costume Collection, including a Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel evening ensemble; Polish political posters from the 1970’s and ‘80’s from the Fox and Lewalski Polish Poster Collection; magnetic tape sound recordings from the Sigma Sound Studio Collection archive; the College of Medicine’s bronze sculpture of Janet Travell, who later became the personal physician to President John F. Kennedy; and the Buckskin Jacket of John James Audubon from the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University.

“This exhibition illustrates the incredible richness, depth and breadth of the art maintained at Drexel,” said Jacqueline DeGroff, curator of The Drexel Collection. “It also demonstrates our dedication to collecting and exhibiting those works, in keeping with founder Anthony J. Drexel’s mission that the art at Drexel is available to the students, faculty, staff and the public.”

The exhibition was designed by Amy Rees, an adjunct professor of graphic design in the Westphal College. Mark Willie, a teaching professor of graphic design in the Westphal College, designed the catalog.

The new Leonard Pearlstein Gallery is more than 4,000 square feet and was designed by the architectural firm of Meyer, Scherer and Rockcastle. It is located at the URBN Center Annex (3401 Filbert St.).


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