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Winterthur Museum (Winterthur, DE 19735-1819)
Wendy A. Cooper (Project Director: September 2007 to January 2010)
Paint, Pattern, and Plain-Style: Furniture of Southeastern Pennsylvania, 1725-1850

Planning of a traveling exhibition, catalog, interactive website, regional travel guide, symposium, and public and educational programs exploring the diversity of furniture-making and ownership in the region in the period.

Winterthur is organizing a major traveling exhibition, "Paint, Pattern, and Plain Style, Furniture of Southeastern Pennsylvania," the first to comprehensively examine this region's cultural diversity. Using 125 objects borrowed from various institutions and private collections to understand the lives of the people who made or owned them, the exhibition will debunk many myths about the dominance of a homogenous Pennsylvania "Dutch" culture, the primitive and unskilled nature of rural arts, and the religious symbolism of folk designs. The stunning visual appeal of the objects and the great tourism interest in the culture of southeastern PA will attract a national audience. A fully illustrated scholarly publication and Web-based component featuring well-documented furniture, a variety of educational programs, a major symposium, special period room tours, and a travel guide to historic houses, museums, and cultural events in the southeastern PA region will accompany the exhibition.

Project fields:
American Studies

America's Historical and Cultural Organizations: Planning Grants

Public Programs

$40,000 (approved)
$40,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
5/1/2008 – 10/31/2009