Originally commissioned by the City’s Percent-for-Art program, Bertoia’s fountain was installed in the central plaza of the Philadelphia Civic Center in West Philadelphia in 1967. The sculpture was placed in storage in 2000 when the plaza and the adjacent buildings of the Civic center were slated for demolition. Conservation of the sculpture has taken place on site at Woodmere. The sculpture is made through a process Bertoia invented; he would bend commerciaòòy obtained copper tubing by hand and weld it together with a bronze alloy.
Harry Bertoia was born in Italy in 1915, and he immigrated to the United States at the age of fifteen. Invited by Hans and Florence Knoll, he moved to Bally, Pennsylvania in 1950. He was successful in his work for Knoll, Inc., and he pursued a career that bridged the fine arts and industrial design. Starting in the summer of 1966, he built the “Free Interpretation of Plant Forms” with two studio assistants in the parking area outside his Bally studio because it was too large to build inside. He delivered it to the Philadelphia Civic Center in 1967 and in 2017, there will be the celebration of the sculpture in its new home at Woodmere Art Museum.
Outdoor Sculpture Symposium
Saturday, October 14, 2017
$22 ($12 members)
Woodmere Art Museum will host a symposium with directors of various of cultural organizations in the region to discuss the different ways institutions think about art on museum grounds and in public urban and green spaces.
The panel is composed of Timothy Rub, Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Philadelphia Museum of Art; Margot Berg, Public Art Director, Philadelphia’s Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy; Paul Meyer, Executive Director of the Morris Arboretum, and Gary Garrido Schneider, Executive Director of Grounds for Sculpture. The discussion will be facilitated by Woodmere’s Director and CEO, Dr. William Valerio.
Disclaimer: If you are planning to attend the event, make sure to check the organizer’s website in case of last minute changes or cancellations