The Bretzger Family

April 15, 2015

IMG_1114When Bill Bretzger and Philinda Mindler moved to the area 16 years ago, they joined the Museum almost immediately. Bill and Philinda, who live about a mile from the Museum, first brought their daughter Sascha—now a teen—to the Museum when she was still in an infant carrier. The couple has always enjoyed visiting museums, even before they had kids. But now, says Philinda, “it’s a big part of what we do as a family.”

Even though Bill is a busy professional photographer, the family still finds time to visit the Delaware Art Museum. These days, their nine-year-old son, Jamie, is their primary motivator for these visits. Jamie loves art and art history so much that he one day hopes to become a museum curator, a role that he already takes quite seriously. When in the galleries, Jamie ‘protects’ the Museum’s collection by keeping a watchful eye to make sure others observe proper museum etiquette. “He’s got a lot of museum guard in him,” Bill explains.

Philinda was first attracted to the Museum by the extensive Pre-Raphaelite collection, which she now enjoys viewing with Jamie. Although Jamie likes the Pre-Raphaelites, he currently credits Augustus Saint-Gaudens’ sculpture, Head of Lincoln, as his favorite work on display. He also loves the recent re-installation of the American Art galleries, especially the dramatic Salon-style wall.

Bill appreciates that the Museum hosts frequent photography exhibitions and Sascha prefers the Howard Pyle galleries and Richard Cleaver’s Queen’s Closet, which was inspired by Henry VIII. They all agree that the recent Brian Selznick exhibition was outstanding. “We’ve always been fans of his work and now even more so,” Jamie says.

The family also enjoys the Museum’s Studios. Jamie attends Summer Art Camp and has recently started to learn sculpture making with instructor Carole Fox, and all of them enjoy workshops taught by Sam and Kate Mylin. “The Mylins are wonderful teachers and are really invested in what they do,” Philinda says. “Even though Jamie has taken their classes multiple times, he keeps coming back because what they create is always different.”

The entire family appreciates that whenever they visit, there is always a new exhibition to explore. They also like to have lunch in the Café and stroll through the Copeland Sculpture Garden. “You can really make a day of it; the Museum is perfect for families”, says Philinda. But she’s quick to add that it’s also a perfect activity for individuals and couples without children.

Above all, the Bretzger family loves that the Museum serves their community by hosting school trips and offering so many family activities at no cost.

And we love that Bill, Philinda, Sascha, and Jamie have all found reasons to keep returning to our Museum. Thank you, Bretzger family, for your continued support.



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