Historically this is an introduction written by my father thanking
the various contributors to the catalog and giving an overview of the works inside.
Unfortunately on March 18th 2004 Robert D. Schwarz Sr passed away after an almost
two year battle with pancreatic cancer. In our last publication my father was
proud to discuss my first involvement in a catalog. Regrettably I am now writing
the introduction to the first catalog that was completed without his guidance
My father began the Schwarz Gallery publications with a small black and white
pamphlet containing six illustrations and a small section of text. This pamphlet
was the foundation for seventy-one more catalogs. They quickly evolved into scholarly
references based on in-depth research where selling the paintings came second
to the research within them. Now my first catalog is focused on European paintings
as was my father’s some 30 years ago. It is my first attempt at maintaining the
quality that people have come to expect from the Schwarz Gallery.
By the hand of fate I expressed my interest in joining the family business only
two weeks before my father was diagnosed. It was something I had been considering
for a long time in secret. I had never imagined that the reigns of control would
be handed over so quickly. As we move forward I plan to keep all of the Schwarz
Gallery’s traditions and uphold the commitment of bettering the art world that
was very dear to him. Eventually I will add my own twist to the Schwarz Gallery
like my father did when taking the reigns from my grandfather but I will not abandon
the gallery’s focus on Philadelphia artists.
Many times since I began here my father referred to our current staff as the “Best
set of employees we have ever had”. More than ever this catalog could not have
been produced without their help and commitment. Because of their strengths we
were able to complete the catalog without the guidance of my father and with a
result that we all are proud of. Matthew North as always has done a superb job
designing and laying out the catalog as well as managing the printing and photographic
quality. David Cassedy’s research and writings are what give the catalogs their
scholarly interest but also manages to appeal to those who appreciate the paintings
on a purely visual level. Nathan Rutkowski and Christine Poole have both done
so many things for the catalog that I would be hard-pressed to list them all.
Simply put their work on the catalog might not be labeled as “designer” or “researcher”
but their contribution is no less important or necessary. Although Betty Mondros
does not work directly on the catalogs I could not exclude her, for without her
the whole gallery would grind to a halt.
In addition to the gallery’s staff, I thank the following people for their assistance:
Paolo Antonacci, Jeffrey Boys, Gary and Janet Calderwood, Wendy and Gordon Hawksley,
Mariko Iida, Cheryl Leibold, Audrey Lewis, Mark Murray, Linda Martin Schaaf, Alasdair
Nichol, Tommy Richardson, Peter Rudolph, Judith O’Toole, Jeffrey Ray, Robert Torchia,
and Ruth Weidner. Merri Ferrell, who was Carriage Curator at the Museums at Stony
Brook (now the Long Island Museum) for more than twenty years, has contributed
a fascinating essay on Giuseppe Gabani’s Coaching on the Appian Way, Rome
(plate 27); she also writes regularly for the Carriage Journal, 19th
Century, and other historical publications, and is the author (with others)
of The Carriage Collection (The Museums at Stony Brook, 1986) and Nineteenth-Century
American Carriages: Their Manufacture, Decoration, and Use (The Museums at
Stony Brook, 1987).
Finally, my family has been through a hard time and a large part of our lives
and our futures have been taken. Without the unquestioning support of my family
I would not be able to continue the business. I thank Pamela Schwarz, Marie Schwarz,
Elizabeth Schwarz and Jonathan Schwarz.
Copyright ©2004 The Schwarz Gallery