LONDON.- Peter Marino’s exceptional private collection of bronze sculptures will go on show to the public for the first time at London’s Wallace Collection, 29 April – 25 July 2010.

Marino is one of the world’s leading architects. Andy Warhol and Yves St Laurent were amongst his first clients, when he founded his architectural practice in 1978, with initial commissions including the design of Warhol’s seminal Factory space and renovation of his New York townhouse. Friendship with Warhol furthered Marino’s interest in art collecting, a passion he has been able to develop both whilst sourcing artworks for domestic and corporate clients and through his work for international museums. Marino’s museum commissions have included designing the installation for the Sèvres Exhibition at the American Craft Museum and, to be unveiled in 2010, the Lalanne sculpture exhibition at Paris’s Musée des Arts Décoratifs and the Meissen Animal and Royal Porcelain Galleries at the Zwinger Palace in Dresden.

A self-confessed ‘obsessive’, Marino’s collection now ranges from important French porcelain to contemporary painting and, over the last twenty years, he has acquired the thirty French and Italian sculptures dating from 1550 to 1750 that will go on show at the Wallace Collection.

The fascination for bronzes, which Marino describes as the most ‘challenging’ part of his collection, is reflected in works that show the gamut of human experience, from Samson and the Philistine, attributed to Baccio Bandinelli, to Antonio Montauti's seductive Diana. Highlights of the exhibition include: the French sculptor Corneille van Clève’s masterpiece Bacchus and Ariadne; two magnificent figurative groups by the Florentine sculptor Giovanni Battista Foggini, Apollo and Marsyas and David and Goliath; Ferdinando Tacca’s Hercules and Iole; Robert Le Lorrain’s Andromeda; and a pair of superb High Baroque vases, decorated with scenes from Roman history. A small number of loans from British collections will complement and enhance the display.

One of the classic materials of sculpture, bronze has long been sought after as a medium by both artists and collectors, because of its power to create, out of molten metal, the most complex and satisfying sculptural forms. Dark and lustrous, almost magical in its mysterious qualities, bronze sculpture can be used to express the most vivid emotions and experiences. Just as Marino’s work redefines luxury for contemporary times, these bronze sculptures, sometimes under-appreciated today, represented exquisite luxury objects to the Renaissance and Baroque collector. As well as marvelling at the beauty and flamboyant artistry, visitors will be entranced by their journey through mythological stories and historical events.

Jeremy Warren, Collections and Academic Director of the Wallace Collection and Beauty and Power’s curator said: “We are immensely grateful to Peter Marino for his generous loan of this marvellous group of bronzes which just breathe passion and style and which complement, in so many ways, our own collections of sculpture at the Wallace Collection.”


Bronze perhaps by Bandinelli, "Samson and a Philistine", c. 16th century Bronze. Courtesy: Peter Marino Collection and the Wallace Collection