Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum: Revolution & Evolution
The Winter Antiques Show’s 2017 loan exhibition commemorates the 60th anniversary of the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum (AARFAM) in Williamsburg, Virginia, one of the art museums of Colonial Williamsburg. Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum: Revolution & Evolution offers a selection of highlights from the museum’s collection, including ceramics, sculpture, drawings, paintings, fraktur, furniture, weathervanes, utilitarian objects, needlework, quilts, toys and more.
The exhibition honors Mrs. Rockefeller, one of the early female collectors of folk art whose collection is the nucleus of the museum’s American folk art collection. It also salutes her vision, which continues today to guide the evolving AARFAM—the oldest institution in the United States dedicated solely to the collection, exhibition and preservation of American folk art—and to inspire its continued collecting and acquisitions process.
“The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is deeply honored to participate in the Winter Antiques Show once again since it appeared there in 2001,” said Ronald L. Hurst, the foundation’s Carlisle H. Humelsine Chief Curator and Vice President for Collections, Conservation and Museums. “It is fitting that the nation’s finest collection of American folk art will celebrate its 60th anniversary at the critically acclaimed Winter Antiques Show in the city where Mrs. Rockefeller’s remarkable philanthropy remains in evidence today.”
The objects featured in Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum: Revolution & Evolution are artifacts of 18th-, 19th- and 20th-century material culture; they were made and used by everyday people and they make strong aesthetic statements, a guiding principle in American folk art appreciation.
The exhibition reflects dynamic periods of collecting that occurred not only for this institution but also for American arts in general: the 1930s, when Mrs. Rockefeller’s collection was amassed; the 1950s, when there was a significant push in the study of American art across the country; the 1970s, when the Bicentennial heightened anew the country’s interest in the revolutionary period and Americana; and the 21st century, in which the geographical regions and time periods of the AARFAM’s collection expanded.
For American folk art aficionados, admirers of 18th-, 19th- and 20th-century material culture created for and by common people, and Americana enthusiasts, there is no better place for seeing the best of its kind than at Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum: Revolution & Evolution, on view from January 20 at the Winter Antiques Show.
For more information on the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum, please visit the Museum’s website.