The Frick Collection was founded by Henry Clay Frick (1849-1919), the Pittsburgh coke and steel industrialist. At his death, Mr. Frick bequeathed his New York residence and the most outstanding of his many artworks to establish a public gallery for the purpose of "encouraging and developing the study of the fine arts." Chief among his bequests, which also included sculpture, decorative arts, drawings, and prints, were one hundred thirty-seven paintings. The Frick Collection now houses a permanent collection of more than 1,100 works of art from the Renaissance to the late nineteenth century.
The Frick Collection includes superb examples of old master and nineteenth-century paintings, French, Italian, and English furniture, Limoges enamels, Sèvres and Chinese porcelains, oriental carpets, and clocks. Artists represented in the Collection include Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn, Giovanni Bellini, El Greco, Francisco de Goya y Lucientes, Frans Hals, Johannes Vermeer, François Boucher, Jean-Honoré Fragonard, Thomas Gainsborough, Sir Joshua Reynolds, Joseph Mallord William Turner, James McNeill Whistler, Francesco Laurana, Severo da Ravenna, and Jean-Antoine Houdon.