Exquisite Wrought Iron Pieces Celebrated in a New Exhibition

Exquisite Wrought Iron Pieces Celebrated in a New Exhibition

Architectural Digest
September 21, 2015
Lise Funderburg

The Barnes Foundation is famous for its eccentrically displayed collection of Postimpressionist and Early Modern paintings, and for its recent, and much debated, move from the Philadelphia suburbs to the city’s museum district. Since the 2012 opening, curators have augmented the Picassos and Pippins collected by founder Albert C. Barnes with a series of vibrant, innovative programs and exhibits. Next up is Strength and Splendor: Wrought Iron from the Musée Le Secq des Tournelles, Rouen, which opens September 19.

Barnes, whose own collection of metalwork is on display on the foundation’s walls, would have appreciated this multi-century sampling of ironworks that dating from as far back as the Gallo-Roman period. Objects in the show range from jewelry to signage, armor, and hardware. They were collected by architectural photographer Jean-Louis-Henri Le Secq des Tournelles and will be making their American debut on loan from their permanent home in a deconsecrated Gothic church in the French city of Rouen.

Accompanying Strength and Splendor is Ellen Harvey: Metal Painting, a new work by Brooklyn-based artist Ellen Harvey commissioned by the Barnes Foundation.