Wednesday, April 23, 2014

visit to reynolda house and american masters exhibit

In 1875, RJ Reynolds established his tobacco company in Winston, NC. He married Katherine Smith in 1905 and while RJ was busy building his empire, Katherine was building the family's fabulous Reynolda House. She was very in tuned with the natural surrounding but also wanted to develop a healthy atmosphere for the employees and caretakers of the estate so subsequently created a whole village. Farms, a church, a school, informal and formal gardens, a lake and hospital were built and families thrived there. In 1934 RJ and Katherine's daughter, Mary Reynolds Babcock, took over the estate and village, continuing the vision of her mother but also vigorously collecting fabulous American art pieces.



the gorgeous greenhouse continues to provide beautiful plantings for the estate and also for sale to the public
 


In 1967, Mary and her husband formally established the home as a non-profit entity and it officially became the Reynolda House Museum of American Art. They donated a very substantial amount of acreage to Wake Forest University, who took over the museum operations in 2002. Much of the quaint village remains and houses small shops and restaurants. The preserved house and furnishings as well as the estate grounds, gardens and village are all open for visitors to stroll through.
Reynolda house not only has amassed a large collection of amazing and valuable art pieces, but a wing was built onto the house for use as exhibition space for traveling collections. We purposefully visited this week so we could enjoy a showing from the Brooklyn Museum of Art: American Masters: 1910-1960, from O'Keefe to Rockwell. It was a fabulous show and below are some of the pieces that were on display for us to enjoy.







10 comments:

Deb @ Frugal Little Bungalow said...

Such an interesting post and I love that Madonna painting

karen said...

how lucky to be able to visit. I love old houses and museums and have to convince my husband that they are wonderful, once inside he agrees, it's just getting him there :)

Tessa~ Here there be musing said...

Far thinking ladies...

How wonderful that this beautiful place is still cared for and able to be enjoyed.

Tessa~

Ariadne Skyrianidou said...

It looks interesting and so beautiful! I love that you shared this and I have the chance to learn about this family and their estate!AriadnefromGreece!

Red Rose Alley said...

The Reynolda house is amazing, and the art pieces are exquisite. I love to visit art museums, they are so interesting. The Mary picture is just beautiful.

I hope you are enjoying the spring days.

~Sheri

Red Rose Alley said...

Oh, and Norman Rockwell is a favorite of mine. His art always amuses me and is so special.

love,
~me

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

Beautiful home, wonderful art collection , cool that you got to take pictures inside.

It's ironic that Mrs Reynolds wanted a healthy place for her family while her husband was making his fortunate on a product that has destroyed so many people's health. I don't suppose he knew that was going to happen though.

Dee said...

What a beautiful place. I can't imagine what it would be like to live like that. Can you?

Love the O'Keefe piece. I've always been drawn to her style of painting.

Tracy Altieri said...

How delightful! I do love seeing the homes of people from the past, and what they have done in order to preserve their estates and art for the future. Thank goodness!

Delighted Hands said...

Oh, oh look at that greenhouse! I could spend forever in the gardens! Thanks for this post!!