Weir Farm National Historical Park’s museum collection contains over 200,000 archives and objects including fine and decorative arts, letters, photographs, and furnishings associated with the site and the history of the Weir, Young and Andrews families. Weir Farm’s art collection includes large oil paintings by Julian Alden Weir and Sperry Andrews, sculptures by Mahonri Young, and a growing collection of artworks by Doris Andrews, Dorothy Weir Young, and Caroline Weir Ely.
Selections from the Collections
Olin Levi Warner, Bust of J. Alden Weir, plaster, 1880.
Julian Alden Weir returned to New York City after studying in Paris in 1877 to begin his professional career. He was vibrant, outgoing, friendly, and talented. Close friend and sculptor Olin Levi Warner captured Weir’s energy and vigor in this 1880 plaster bust. A New York Times critic wrote, “As a portrait-bust it may be pronounced the finest, most virile work yet exhibited in New-York...the turn of the head showing the tendons and veins of the neck, the modeling which gives energy to the chin, the vivacity of the eye-sockets, the delicate manipulation of the lips, give it an intensity of life that one seldom sees in any statuary.”
Bust of J. Alden Weir is on view in the Weir House.
Plaster cast of Abraham Lincoln’s Left Hand
In 1917 Douglas Volk gave Julian Alden Weir this plaster casting of Abraham Lincoln’s left hand. Weir and Volk studied together at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris. Volk’s father, Leonard, made his original casting of Lincoln’s face and hands during Lincoln’s first presidential campaign in 1860. There are many copies of Lincoln’s hands and face made from Volk’s mold, including a series oversaw by Augustus Saint-Gaudens in 1886.
A copy of Lincoln’s hand is on view in the Weir Studio.
Julian Alden Weir, Autumn, oil on canvas, 1906. Gift from the Trustees of the Corcoran Gallery of Art, William A. Clark Collection.
Julian Alden Weir’s most successful landscape paintings of his Branchville farm all share a few of his simple truths: sun-drenched fields contain both beautiful vistas and unsightly dying trees. Common subjects are beautiful and worth examining. Weir’s paintings are filled with impediments that intentionally slow down how fast a viewer can observe the painting. The wetlands, boulders, trees, fences, and stone walls in Autumn are the visual representation of Weir’s belief that one must spend time in nature before nature reveals its beauty.
Autumn is on view in the Weir House.
Mahonri Young, Enzo Fiermonte, bronze, 1931.
Mahonri Young enjoyed boxing throughout his life. He went to amateur matches in Paris and in 1903 broke his thumb during an impromptu sparing match with Leo Stein. Young’s 1931 sculpture of Italian boxer Enzo Fiermonte shows the fighter ready for shadow boxing. Fiermonte stands alone, in an orthodox stance. His raised hands are wrapped, and he is wearing all his boxing gear except gloves.
Enzo Fiermonte is on view in the Young Studio.
Saint Francis of Assisi Medallion
The five Dutch casement windows, featuring intricate leaded glass and wooden shutters, are some of the most captivating architectural elements of the Weir House. Each window features two, antique stained-glass medallions that were likely collected by Julian Alden Weir during one of his European trips. St. Francis of Assisi is the patron saint of animals and the environment.
This 16thcentury medallion of St. Francis of Assisi is located in the east window of the Dining Room.
Julian Weir Lives & Save the Farm Pins
Cora Weir Burlingham along with Sperry and Doris Andrews were instrumental in developing a grassroots movement to save Weir Farm from encroaching development. Their passion for the landscape influenced the surrounding community to join in the preservation efforts. These buttons were created and worn in support of the farm for the enjoyment, education and inspiration of this and future generations.
Want to see more art? Please visit Weir Farm’s Museum Collection page on the NPS web catalog to see more artworks from Weir Farm National Historical Park’s permanent collection.
Weir Farm cannot purchase art using federal funds because of a clause written into the park’s enabling legislation. To fill this gap, Weir Farm relies on the generosity of partners and individuals who donate art to the collection and money to the acquisition account. Please visit the Support your Park page to learn more.
Art Donated by Park Partner, the Weir Farm Art Alliance
Over the past thirty years, the Weir Farm Art Alliance has donated over 140 pieces of art to Weir Farm National Historical Park. These works are now part of the Park's museum collection, and a wide variety can be viewed on the Alliance website. Thank you to the Weir Farm Art Alliance for your continued effort to reunite historically significant paintings with the park!