The Frick Collection is a museum of Old Master paintings, European sculpture and decorative arts along Fifth Avenue in Manhattan’s Upper East Side.
While its Frick Mansion home is being remodeled, the Collection has moved to The Frick Madison in the Met Breuer building designed by Marcel Breuer for the former Whitney Museum in 1966.
Henry Frick was a Pennsylvania Coal Magnate
The Frick Collection in New York City’s Upper East Side is a museum and library of old master paintings, European sculpture, and decorative arts. The museum is built around industrialist Henry Frick’s “Gilded Age” mansion and personal art collection. The collection comes from a time when the new rich of the Americas would acquire art masterworks on their vacations to Europe.
Henry Frick (1849-1919) made his fortune in Pennsylvania coal. His business was transforming coal into coke which is used to make steel. Eventually he partnered with Andrew Carnegie. Their joint firm was the predecessor to United States Steel.
The Frick House is Gilded Age New York
The Frick House was designed by the architectural firm Carrère and Hastings. The firm was renowned for Beaux-Arts architecture including the New York Public Library. The firm’s principals were French trained at the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts.
Visiting the Frick House gives a unique view into how the very rich, the 1%, lived about one hundred years ago.
The Frick Collection of Old Masters
The Frick Collection is known for its old master paintings and fine furniture.
Highlights of the art collection include Jean-Honoré Fragonard’s “The Progress of Love” (French), and Piero della Francesca’s “St. John the Evangelist” (Italian).
In addition to paintings, the collection features 18th century French furniture and furnishings.
The Breuer Building
The modern building was designed by Marcel Breuer for the Whitney Museum of American Art. It was completed in 1966, and became the Met Breuer in 2016 when the Whitney moved downtown.
The Met Breuer closed when The Met decided it was too costly to keep three museum buildings. That made the space available when The Frick was looking for a temporary home during renovation. The Frick Madison opened in March 2021.