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Pennsylvania German Decorative Arts

On-Site / Art in Context

Tuesdays, August 30 – September 20, 7 – 9pm


John Bieber. Chest over Drawers, 1789. 01.13.18. Public Domain.

$200; members $180
(4 classes)

About the Class

In the 1930s, Albert Barnes became an avid collector of Pennsylvania German decorative arts—including painted furniture, clocks, redware pottery, ironwork, and textiles. Dr. Barnes displayed these folk art objects throughout his collection galleries, juxtaposing them with European modernist paintings and artistic traditions from around the globe; he also filled his country house, Ker-Feal, with hundreds of examples. This course will include a close-up examination of these Pennsylvania German artifacts and an introduction to the historical context in which they were originally made and used.

Join instructor Lisa Minardi for an optional visit to Ker-Feal in Chester Springs and the Center for Pennsylvania German Studies in Trappe on Saturday, September 10, beginning at 10am. Students will need to arrange their own transportation.

Capacity: 18

Note: Proof of COVID-19 vaccination is required to attend this class; please check Safety Guidelines for current masking information.


Lisa Minardi

Minardi, a specialist in Pennsylvania German art and culture, is the author of numerous publications, including Drawn with Spirit: Pennsylvania German Fraktur from the Joan and Victor Johnson Collection. She has also curated exhibitions such as A Colorful Folk: Pennsylvania Germans & the Art of Everyday Life at Winterthur Museum and Quill & Brush: Pennsylvania German Fraktur and Material Culture at the Free Library of Philadelphia.

Art in Context

Art in Context courses connect works of art to history: What was happening politically, socially, and culturally at the time a piece was made? How did these circumstances shape the artist’s formal choices?