Pennsbury Manor portrait painted by a student of Rembrandt

Pennsbury Manor portrait painted by a student of Rembrandt

In 1946, on the heels of the bicentennial of founder William Penn’s birth, the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission acquired a striking portrait entitled Lady Springett. The sitter, Mary Proude Springett Pennington (1625–1682), was the mother of Penn’s first wife, Gulielma Maria Springett (1644–1694). An orphaned heiress at 3 years old, Lady Springett married, in …

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Red Rose Studio: Love and camaraderie expressed on canvas

Red Rose Studio: Love and camaraderie expressed on canvas

Violet Oakley was a painter, stained-glass artist and illustrator. She is best known for her murals currently on display inside the Pennsylvania State Capitol. Those paintings represent the largest public work ever to be completed by a woman. This week’s Pennsylvania Treasure, an oil-on-canvas entitled Red Rose Studio, depicts the Red Rose Inn, Oakley’s home …

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Hunting down an Easter egg mystery: Who is MH?

Hunting down an Easter egg mystery: Who is MH?

The Pennsylvania German tradition known as oier gritzel, or egg scratching, created colorful Easter eggs from chicken, goose or duck eggs. Each member of the family would receive a decorated egg to mark the holiday. This decorated egg is dated “April 16, 1790” and marked “MH,” most likely the initials of the person the artist …

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Return of Ulysses: A Greek classic set to an African American voice

Return of Ulysses: A Greek classic set to an African American voice

In 1977, while making black-and-white photostat copies of Renaissance paintings, Romare Bearden (1911-1988) realized that most of the subjects were white. He reversed the black and white tones which darkened the color of the characters and, by doing so, added an African American voice to art history. This realization, coupled with the advancements of the …

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Andy Warhol and his Little Red Book: The early days of social photography

Andy Warhol and his Little Red Book: The early days of social photography

  Television talk show host Dick Cavett is known to audiences for his conversational style and engaging in witty banter with celebrity guests. But, have you have ever seen him in a wetsuit? How about riding on the back of a horse? In December 1971, Andy Warhol, one of Pennsylvania’s most prominent modern artists, took …

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