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A Museum Grows in Philadelphia: Woodmere’s Collection from the 1890s to Today

April 30, 2019   5:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.

On Tuesday, April 30, Rago Auctions hosts Director and CEO of Woodmere Art Museum, Dr. William R. Valerio, as he delivers a presentation titled “A Museum Grows in Philadelphia: Woodmere’s Collection from the 1890s to Today.”

This talk will explore the origins of Woodmere Art Museum and its founder, Charles Knox Smith, a city leader and industrialist who purchased the original Woodmere estate in 1898. Smith opened the doors of the museum to the public in 1910, with the intent to share with his fellow Philadelphians the profound spiritual connection he experienced through art. Dr. Valerio’s presentation will trace the history of growth in the Woodmere’s collection through the decades, discuss the institution’s current criteria for acquisition, and explore how the institution is shaping an experience it believes matters to its community.

Dr. William R. Valerio serves as the Patricia Van Burgh Allison Director and CEO of Woodmere Art Museum. Under his leadership, Woodmere has become an increasingly vital presence in the cultural life of the region, experiencing steady growth in attendance, membership, and donor base. Dr. Valerio has more than twenty-two years of experience in art museums. He attended Williams College, where he graduated Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa, earned his MA in Art History at the University of Pennsylvania and his PhD in Art History at Yale University, and attended the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, where he earned a double major in strategic management and marketing. Widely published, Dr. Valerio has received numerous awards and fellowships, including the Rome Prize of the American Academy in Rome.

The auction house opens on Tuesday, April 30 at noon. A wine and cheese reception begins at 5 pm. The presentation will begin at 6 pm.

Guests are invited to R.S.V.P. to or 609-397-9374 ext. 119.

A Museum Grows in Philadelphia: Woodmere’s Collection from the 1890s to Today