IN HIS OFFICE AT EASTERN COLD STORAGE, NEW YORK, NY
Eastern Cold Storage, New York, NY
at the Pearlman residence on East 80th Street, New York City
l to r: Dorothy, Marge, Rose, Henry
The mission of the Henry and Rose Pearlman Foundation is to broaden the public reach and deepen the personal experience of art while conserving the original works in its collection for future audiences.
Henry Pearlman (1895-1974), was a lifelong resident of New York City and primary collector of post-impressionist artwork. In 1919 he founded his own company, Eastern Cold Storage, and, in 1925, he married Rose Fried. He began purchasing avant-garde art in 1945 with a Chaim Soutine landscape, triggering a passion for collecting that endured for the rest of his life. He loved the thrill of the hunt and uncovering hidden masterworks, learning about the social bonds among artists and the aesthetic influences they had on one another.
Over three decades, Pearlman acquired works by Soutine, Modigliani, Cézanne, Van Gogh, Renoir, Manet, Matisse, and Toulouse-Lautrec, as well as lesser-known artists with modernist visions. In the early 1950s, Pearlman began collecting Cézanne watercolors. These paintings would become the cornerstone of his collection and today form one of the most exceptional groupings of the artist’s work in this medium. Pearlman died in 1974, and Rose managed the collection until her death in 1994. From the mid-1970s, the Pearlman Collection has been on loan to the Princeton University Art Museum, where it is seen and studied by visitors, scholars and students.
With this website, the directors of the Henry and Rose Pearlman Foundation hope to provide an engaging self-guided exploration of the collection. Exposing works of art to those who cannot view them in person, the site also attempts ways of organizing and viewing art that would be challenging, or impossible, even with such a visit. It is our hope that new learning opportunities will result from removing some of the obstacles – geography, space limitations, environmental risks, politics of ownership – that have historically defined public accessibility to art.
Many thanks to Bruce White for his photography of the collection and to Allison Unruh for writing the artist biographies.
– Daniel Edelman, President
Henry Pearlman built this collection while learning about the artists and their connections. As his knowledge and taste developed, he sometimes lacked the resources to acquire new discoveries without selling or exchanging works. In some cases, he found something he liked better. In others, he simply didn’t have the room to enjoy a work or the conservation resources to protect it. Here are some of the works that were once part of the Pearlman Collection.