Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.
Haverford student William Coleman ’07 will be the first student at Haverford to curate an exhibit in Haverford’s Cantor Fitzgerald Gallery. The exhibit is an impressive collection of Pennsylvania landscape painting spanning work from the eighteenth century through contemporary pieces, including the work of Andrew Wyeth and other area artists. The exhibit runs from March 2- April 1 in Haverford’s Cantor-Fitzgerald Gallery.
Coleman, brother of Swarthmore student Anne Coleman ’09, has been working on the project since the summer of 2005, when he read that one of his idols, Gary Tinterow, curator at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, curated his first exhibit while an undergraduate at Brandeis College. Since then, Coleman has borrowed some very significant pieces from a number of colleges, art museums and the Library Company of Philadelphia.
Among his collaborators in this was Swarthmore’s List Gallery director Andrea Packard. Swarthmore’s piece “Wissahickon” by James Peale, is one of the paintings exhibited. The painting, depicting a scene in nearby Fairmount Park is circa 1805.
Coleman’s focus on the Pennsylvania Landscape is, as he puts it “a topic that hasn’t been covered, surprisingly. Landscape art is often called the national art. We have these beautiful trees and landscapes instead of the European temples and ruins.”
The broad range of pieces gives visitors a chance to appreciate the varying representations of Pennsylvania. Coleman also observes a Quaker link in the work. The oldest piece is one of the earliest surviving maps commissioned by William Penn. The map, dating to 1705, has a “here be dragons feel to it” states Coleman.
The exhibit, entitled “The Pennsylvania Landscape: Colonial to Contemporary” will have an opening reception today, Friday March 2, from 5-7 PM. The gallery hours are from 11 am to 5 pm weekdays, noon to 5 pm on weekends, and extended hours on Wednesdays until 8 pm.