Chester County Historical Society’s New Exhibit Combines Past and Present

‘Adrian Martinez Presents the Visionary World of Humphrey Marshall 1750-1800’ is one-of-a-kind.

The Chester County Historical Society welcomes a one-of-a-kind exhibit that artfully blurs the line between past and present. Adrian Martinez Presents the Visionary World of Humphry Marshall 1750-1800 celebrates the renowned 18th-century botanist, astronomer and farmer. Personal artifacts include Marshall’s chair and a microscope with original slides. 

Ushering it all into the 21st century is Martinez, whose series of 12 oil paintings surrounds the display. “Marshall was the avatar of everything that Chester County was and aspired to be. He was a natural fit,” says the acclaimed Downingtown-based artist.

Four years in the making, Visionary World was inspired, in part, by the late Robert Lukens, former president of CCHS. “We had a mutual
vision of a show that had art and history colliding,” says Martinez, whose longtime love of history and Mid-Atlantic Colonial culture began as a child in Washington, D.C.  

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Among the paintings is a likeness of Marshall (pictured). “I knew I wanted to do a formal portrait of Humphry sitting in that chair, with his microscope,” Martinez says. “I see that chair, and I think about the people who sat in it, laughed in it, cried in it, and did brilliant scientific research.”

225 N. High St.,West Chester. 

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