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Artistic Eyes
Think finding museum-worthy art requires a trip downtown? Think again

by Bob Craig

Most people assume that visiting the region’s finest art galleries and museums requires crossing the line into Center City and its surrounding neighborhoods. Based on attractions and openings coming to the many suburban establishments that trade in arts and culture, however, that’s simply not the case. The following guide lays out some of the most remarkable art galleries and museums skirting the city, from the four suburban Philadelphia counties to river towns in the Garden State, as well as parts of the city abutting the suburbs. 

Art Galleries
BEAUTY ART GALLERY This art gallery also serves as an antique and gift shop. Home to pieces that are unique, unusual or rare, Beauty Art Gallery proudly displays works of contemporary oil paintings, vintage antiques, indoor and outdoor home décor and much more. Beauty is currently featuring new paintings by Jeanne Bruneau and Madeline Kelly. June 1: “All Creatures” Opening Reception. Hours: Tues. to Fri., 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. 3857 Providence Road, Newtown Square, beautyartgallery.net, 610-353-4569

BURCHTREE FINE ART GALLERY This family-operated fine arts gallery and custom framing market specializes in North American original oil paintings. “There’s not a whole lot of galleries [in the suburbs],” shares owner Jayne Burchmore. “We offer a unique product that you don’t see a whole lot of.” Burchtree represents as many as 15 artists, half of which are natives to the area. Hours: Tues. to Fri., 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 503 W. Lancaster Ave., Wayne, burchtreefineart.com, 610-293-4080

SILVERMAN GALLERY Home to the work of four very passionate artists—Joseph Barrett, Alan Fetterman, Jennifer Hansen Rolli and John Kane—the Silverman Gallery takes great pride in its dedication to showcasing Impressionist-style paintings. May 18 to June 12: “Field, Figure & Form,” Jennifer Hansen Rolli’s Solo Exhibition. Hours: Tues. to Sat., 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Buckingham Green, Route 202, Buckingham, silvermangallery.com, 215-794-4300

SUNSET HILL JEWELERS AND FINE ARTS GALLERY This fine arts gallery and jeweler is owned and operated by West Chester native Sandra Riper. With strong community ties, Sunset Hill provides top-notch jewelry service and has beautiful local art on display throughout the year. Sunset Hill features the Harry Dunn Gallery, paying homage to one of the area’s most respected artists and advocates for fine art. June 7: First Friday and Gallery Walk. Ongoing: “Land and Sea” art exhibit featuring the works of Marty Santry and Pete Quarracino. Hours: Mon., Tues., Thurs. and Fri., 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.; Wed., 9:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.  23 N. High Street, West Chester, sunsethillgallery.com, 610-692-0374

Museums & Other Establishments
BRANDYWINE RIVER MUSEUM Housed inside of a 19th-century gristmill, the Brandywine River Museum is home to three generations of the Wyeth family’s fine art collection. This museum pays special attention to American illustration, still life and landscape paintings, with multiple works by Benjamin West, Gilbert Stuart, Asher Durand, W. T. Richards, William Harnett, John Haberle, J.D. Chalfant, Horace Pippin and many more. June 19: Creative Escape Workshop. Through July 28: “Which Way the Wind Blows - Antique American Weathervanes.” Ongoing: “Free Sunday Mornings.” Hours: Daily, 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. U.S. Route 1, P.O. Box 141, Chadds Ford, brandywinemuseum.org, 610-388-2700

DELAWARE ART MUSEUM This museum’s collection has grown to include approximately 12,000 works of art by great American masters such as Winslow Homer. The museum now encompasses 80,000 square feet of exhibition and administrative space, four studio art classrooms and a sprawling nine-acre sculpture park, which is the first of its kind in the region. Through July 7: “Gertrude Käsebier’s Photographs of the Eight - Portraits for Promotion.” Through Aug. 4: “Imagined Places - The Art of Alexi Natchev.” 2301 Kentmere Pkwy., Wilmington, Del. 302-571-9590, delart.org
 
GROUNDS FOR SCULPTURE Founded in 1992, this 42-acre public sculpture park is located at the site of the former New Jersey State Fairgrounds. Grounds for Sculpture includes an outdoor permanent collection and indoor seasonal collections. May 31: Landscape at Grounds for Sculpture Workshop. June 14: Concert in the Courtyard - The Deb Callahan Band. Ongoing: Pepon Osorio’s “Where the Me Becomes We,” Jonathan Shahn’s “Heads in Wood and Plaster” and Jo Yarrington’s “The Leap.” Hours: Tues. to Sun., 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. 18 Fairgrounds Road, Hamilton, N.J., groundsforsculpture.org, 609-586-0616

JAMES A. MICHENER ART MUSEUM An independent, nonprofit cultural institution, the James A. Michener Museum opened its doors in 1988 with a mission to preserve, interpret and exhibit the local art in Bucks County. Currently housing a collection of Pennsylvania Impressionist paintings, the Michener was gifted a collection of 59 paintings by regional artists of the Pennsylvania Impressionist School. May 31: Studio Tour - Alan Goldstein. June 11: Artist’s Lecture by Nelson Shanks. Through June 16: “Transformations II - Works in Steel” by Karl Stirner. Hours: Tues. to Fri., 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Sun., noon to 5 p.m. 138 S. Pine Street, Doylestown, michenermuseum.org, 215-340-9800

WOODMERE ART MUSEUM Opened since 1940, the Woodmere has nine galleries and salons including a grand rotunda and home to the Helen Millard Children’s Gallery. Located in a 19th-century stone Victorian mansion in the city’s Chestnut Hill section, the Woodmere showcases a vast range of exhibits and events. This museum “is the only institution in the city that tells the story of the art and artists of Philadelphia,” says Woodmere CEO William R. Valerio. “We are also Philadelphia's only great historic house that has been transformed into a public-scaled museum, all set in the elegant, green environment of Chestnut Hill.” The museum houses a permanent collection of more than 3,000 works of art which celebrate the art of Philadelphia. May 17 and 31: Friday Jazz Night. June 14: “Summer Sunshine - A Tribute to Stevie Wonder” concert. Through June 30: “The Promise of Peace - Violet Oakley’s United Nations Portraits.” Hours: Tues., Thurs. and Sun., 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Fri., 10 a.m. to 8:45 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. 9201 Germantown Ave., Chestnut Hill, woodmereartmuseum.org, 215-247-0476

 

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