Gary Calderwood

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Gary Calderwood (born January 7, 1946) is an American art collector and dealer in artist-designed original 20th Century French decorative arts. He founded Calderwood Gallery, Decorative Arts 1900-1950 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1982. Specializing in French Art Deco, Modernist and Forties furniture and objects, Calderwood Gallery has an international reputation and clientele.

Early years[edit]

He was born in Philadelphia, raised in Margate, New Jersey, and studied photography at Rochester Institute of Technology (1963–1967) at a time when it was one of only two schools in the United States which offered a BFA in photography/photo science.[1] He worked for 15 years as a commercial photographer for clients including Taylor Wine, Omni Hotels, Agway, and others.

A lifelong collector; of coins, stamps, comic-strip art, photography, French Art Nouveau and Art Deco furniture and ceramics, he launched Calderwood Gallery out of a passion for 20th Century design. A scholarly approach to collecting and authenticating led him to pursue the acquisition of original period portfolios, magazines, and other published reference materials as well as the furniture, objects and lighting documented therein.

Calderwood Gallery[edit]

Initially opened in a small warehouse space on Locust Street in Center City Philadelphia, Calderwood Gallery relocated to the corner of 8th and South Street in early 1984. At the time, “Where do all the hippies meet, South Street, South Street” was living up to its name for avant garde small shops and boutiques. Calderwood Gallery quickly built a clientele of out-of-town visitors to the hippest street in town.

In 1989 the gallery relocated uptown, to the Rittenhouse Row neighborhood, on 17th Street, later to Walnut Street, and, finally, to a post-Civil War mansion at 1622 Spruce Street. Equidistant from the Rafael Viñoly-designed Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts (at Broad and Spruce Streets) and Rittenhouse Square (at 18th and Locust Streets), Calderwood Gallery ‘s vast inventory is representative of the most illustrious designers of the Art Deco, Modernist and Forties periods.

Calderwood 2[edit]

In 2008 Gary Calderwood, together with his wife, Janet, and son, Chris, opened a second gallery, Calderwood 2, specializing in international design from 1950 to Y2K. Calderwood 2 is headquartered in an historic stables building on North Broad Street in Philadelphia.


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