From the Curators:
"Old money. High risk trade. Quaker ideals and Episcopalian aspirations. Social ambition--and its strains. Bankruptcy. The story of Classical Splendor shows how all of the above combined to create one of early Philadelphia's most fabled settings for a set of surviving furniture designed by architect B. Henry Latrobe for the house he designed for China trade merchant William Waln and his wife Mary. Standing on the corner of Chestnut and 7th Streets, the majestic house encased a suite of drawing rooms with walls painted by one of the leading artist of the day who painted the furniture to match. With its strong nod to the arts of ancient Greece and Rome, the sleek furniture reveals the timelessness of classical design. Reconsidered after a 5-year research and conservation treatment, the story of the Walns' furniture is told in the same collaborative manner that its extraordinary creation also required."
—Alexandra Alevizatos Kirtley, The Montgomery-Garvan Curator of American Decorative Arts
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