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Barnes Museum Brings In a New Artist, Contemporary Albeit Temporary

(Artitst Ellsworth Kelly and museum curator Judith Dolkart stand in front of his "Sculpture for a Large Wall."  Credit: John Ostapkovich)

(Artitst Ellsworth Kelly and museum curator Judith Dolkart stand in front of his “Sculpture for a Large Wall.” Credit: John Ostapkovich)

John Ostapkovich John Ostapkovich
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By John Ostapkovich

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Barnes Foundation is making history — twice!

Beginning May 4th and running though Labor Day, the Barnes will host its first solo exhibit of contemporary art, and the first outside show in 90 years.

It’s called “Ellsworth Kelly: Sculpture on the Wall,” and curator Judith Dolkart says its biggest piece, “Sculpture for a Large Wall,” has come home.

“Originally mounted above the elevator banks at the Philadelphia Transportation Building [18th and JFK Blvd., demolished in the 1990s], it is installed here to meet the eye direct,” she said today.

Ellsworth Kelly, nearly 90 years old and toting an oxygen device, took to the podium to declare he didn’t have much to say without his work within sight, nonetheless praising the Barnes.

“To be able to show in this building, which I approve of so much.  I used to go to the old one, but this is a great excellent place,” he said.

Another Kelly piece, the Barnes totem, permanently greets visitors as they walk toward the museum entrance (see related story).

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