The Henry and Rose Pearlman Collection

Over three decades, Henry Pearlman combined his love of art, his superb eye, and a keen business sense to form one of the great collections of modern art to be held in private hands. A lifelong New Yorker, Pearlman in 1919 founded the Eastern Cold Storage Company, which made important contributions to marine shipbuilding during World War II. He recalled that his passion for collecting art began one day in the mid-1940s, when he passed the American Art Auction Galleries in New York and glimpsed Chaïm Soutine’s The Village Square. He bought the work, and its dense brushstrokes and brilliant colors graced the wall above his mantelpiece, where, he later wrote, it gave him “a lift” each evening when he returned home from work.

Pearlman built close relationships with a number of dealers in the U.S. and abroad, and by befriending artists directly he was able to secure numerous paintings that today are deemed masterpieces. He relished the hunt for secreted masterworks and was fascinated by the networks of aesthetic influence and personal relationships among artists. His tastes ran from Manet and Toulouse-Lautrec to Modigliani and Soutine, but Cézanne would prove to be his most enduring obsession—his collection includes six paintings and sixteen of the finest extant watercolors by this master.

Since the mid-1970s, the Pearlman collection has been on loan to the Princeton University Art Museum, where generations of scholars, students, and visitors have studied and delighted in these works, thus joining Pearlman in what he described as “a road of adventure both exhilarating and satisfying.” The result of Pearlman’s extraordinary vision—the Henry and Rose Pearlman Collection—was on view in a major international traveling exhibition that showcased 50 modern masterworks from the late 19th through early 20th centuries.

  • Portrait of Marsden Hartley
    Jacques Lipchitz, French, 1891–1973 | Marsden Hartley, American, 1877–1943 | Modern Art Foundry, American foundry, founded 1932
    Portrait of Marsden Hartley, 1942
    L.1988.62.68
  • Head
    Amedeo Modigliani, Italian, 1884 - 1920
    Head, ca. 1910–11
    L.1988.62.71
  • Mateo
    Amedeo Modigliani, Italian, 1884 - 1920
    Mateo, 1915
    L.1988.62.20
  • Jean Cocteau
    Amedeo Modigliani, Italian, 1884 - 1920
    Jean Cocteau, 1916
    L.1988.62.18
  • Léon Indenbaum
    Amedeo Modigliani, Italian, 1884 - 1920
    Léon Indenbaum, 1916
    L.1988.62.19
  • Still Life: Apples and Pears in a Round Basket
    Camille Pissarro, French, 1830–1903
    Still Life: Apples and Pears in a Round Basket, 1872
    L.1988.62.15
  • Sea and Boats
    Maurice Brazil Prendergast, American, 1858–1924
    Sea and Boats, ca. 1907
    L.2003.38.2
  • Nude in a Landscape
    Pierre-Auguste Renoir, French, 1841–1919
    Nude in a Landscape, ca. 1887
    L.1988.62.17
  • River View
    Alfred Sisley, French, 1839–1899
    River View, 1889
    L.1988.62.16
  • Self-Portrait
    Chaïm Soutine, Russian, active in France, 1893–1943
    Self-Portrait, ca. 1918
    L.1988.62.23
  • Chemin de la Fontaine des Tins at Céret
    Chaïm Soutine, Russian, active in France, 1893–1943
    Chemin de la Fontaine des Tins at Céret, ca. 1920
    L.1988.62.24
  • Steeple of Saint-Pierre at Céret
    Chaïm Soutine, Russian, active in France, 1893–1943
    Steeple of Saint-Pierre at Céret, ca. 1922
    L.1988.62.25
  • Hanging Turkey
    Chaïm Soutine, Russian, active in France, 1893–1943
    Hanging Turkey, ca. 1925
    L.1988.62.29
  • View of Céret
    Chaïm Soutine, Russian, active in France, 1893–1943
    View of Céret, ca. 1921–22
    L.1988.62.26
  • Choir Boy
    Chaïm Soutine, Russian, active in France, 1893–1943
    Choir Boy, 1925
    L.1988.62.28
  • Portrait of a Woman
    Chaïm Soutine, Russian, active in France, 1893–1943
    Portrait of a Woman, 1929
    L.1988.62.27
  • The Sacred Grove
    Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, French, 1864–1901
    The Sacred Grove, 1884
    L.1988.62.13
  • Messalina
    Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, French, 1864–1901
    Messalina, 1900–1901
    L.1988.62.12

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73 items