New Portico Gallery Opens with Presentation of Sculpture and Selections from an Important Promised Gift of Meissen Porcelain from Henry H. Arnhold

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portico gallery view from the entrance


On December 13, visitors to The Frick Collection will 
be able to enjoy a new gallery—the first major addition 
to the museum’s display spacesin nearly thirty-five 
years. The inspiration for this initiative, which involves 
the enclosure of the portico in the Fifth Avenue Garden, 
comes from the intention of museum founder Henry 
Clay Frick (1849–1919)to build an addition to his 1914 
mansion for his growing collection ofsculpture. The
project was postponed in 1917 following the United 
States entry into World War I and Mr. Frick died before 
it could be resumed. In recent years, the institution has placed greater focus on sculpture through critically 
acclaimed exhibitions and several key acquisitions, while also evaluating the effectiveness of the display and 
lighting of such objects. Another area of increased focus has been the decorative arts. When talks began with 
renowned porcelain collector Henry H. Arnhold about a promised gift, the idea to create a gallery both for sculpture 
and the decorative arts was revisited. The architecture firm Davis Brody Bond developed a plan to integrate the 
outdoor garden portico into the fabric of the museum, and groundbreaking occurred last year. Davis Brody Bond is 
one of the leading practices in the United States engaged in a range of museum and landmark structure 
commissions. The firm’s cultural portfolio includes the National September 11 Memorial Museum, the 
Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African American History and Culture, and over twenty years of 
restoration and expansion work at the New York Public Library. The Portico Gallery opens in mid-December
with an inaugural exhibition of works drawn fromHenry Arnhold’s promised gift of 131 examples of Meissen 
porcelain from the early years of this Royal Manufactory’s production. On view through January 6, 2013, White 2
Gold: Highlights from the Arnhold Collection of Meissen Porcelain will feature approximately sixty-five of these 
objects, presented along with a pair of eighteenth-century sculptures by Jean-Antoine Houdon (1740–1828) that 
includes the full-length terracotta Diana the Huntress, a signature work at the Frick that returns to view having been 
recently cleaned and treated. It finds a permanent home in the new portico gallery, while the ongoing display of 
other sculptures and ceramics will rotate periodically.