Happy 20th Birthday to The Maridon Museum!

The Maridon Museum Celebrates 20 years

Mary Phillips, Maridon Museum FounderJoin us as we celebrate two decades of sharing Asia’s stunning art and culture! Immerse yourself in centuries of beauty with our Chinese and Japanese artwork collection, plus exquisite Meissen porcelain. ️

Mary Phillips, a resident of Butler, PA, quietly amassed a stunning collection of jade, porcelain, and woodcarvings. Though she never ventured far from home, her passion for Asian art blossomed.

In 2004, Mary ensured her beloved collection would be shared with the world by establishing the Maridon Museum (named after her and her husband, Don). Designed by a renowned NYC expert, the museum offers a glimpse into Asian history and culture, all in an unexpected setting.

Experience the beauty and wonder of Asian art right here in Butler! We’re open Wednesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Unleash Your Inner Collector: The Maridon Museum’s Exciting Speaker Series Returns!

Calling all curious minds and hidden enthusiasts! The Maridon Museum’s popular Collector Series is back, offering a unique program each month to awaken your inner collector and delve into fascinating realms.

Prepare to be surprised! Each session features a captivating speaker guiding you through a world of intriguing collectibles. From ancient treasures to modern marvels, there’s something for everyone.

Here’s a sneak peek at the upcoming events:

  • May 15th, 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM: Chinese Jewelry: Ancient to Modern with Dr. Cynthia Marshall. Embark on a journey through time as Dr. Marshall explores the rich history and evolution of Chinese adornment.
  • June 12th, 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM: Pop-Up Books with Rue Snider. Explore the whimsical world of pop-up books and their artistic ingenuity.
  • July 18th, 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM: Vintage Pinball Machines with Pat Gallagher. Relive the excitement of classic pinball machines and delve into their history and cultural impact.
  • August 15th, 6:00 PM—7:00 PM: The Art of Nintendo with Jackie Totin. Dive into Nintendo’s pixelated world and explore its evolution as a gaming powerhouse.

Don’t miss out! Space is limited for these programs, so reserve your spot today.

Reservations are required. Call us at 724-282-0123 or email info@maridon.org to register or for any questions.

Download our event flyer for a closer look!

Until We Meet Again

Betty Anderson
1922 – 2023

Betty Anderson was one of those rare gems bringing light into a room with her engaging smile and enlightenment to others by sharing her vast knowledge of Asian cultures.

Betty was one of the first docents with the museum. Her activities evolved into taking chairmanship of The Maridon’s Education Committee. With her guidance and connections many classes and programs were presented through the years. Betty acted as our ambassador to connect with heads of Asian Studies Programs at S.R. University and the Chinese Art Dept at the University of Pittsburgh specializing in Asian studies. The Foreign Film Series presented at The Maridon in collaboration with professors of the Slippery Rock University Asian Studies Programs, is a result of Betty’s efforts on our behalf.

The first Korean object in the museum is attributed to Betty’s tour with Song-Hee Kim, PhD, Dept. of Modern Languages and Cultures, Slippery Rock University. He recognized that there were no Korean pieces on display and contacted his sister, Young-Ran Kim, an artist in Korea. She painted the “Il-Wol-Oh-Bohng-Doh” and a family member transported it from Korea to the museum. This painting remains on exhibit in the museum’s upper hall.

Betty spearheaded, “A Taste of Korea,” the museum’s first successful Korean Week celebration. The museum was filled with the wonderful aromas of Korean dishes, art, music and new friends.

In later years Betty moved to Johnstown, Pa to be with her family where she remained active in her community. We were so deeply sorry to learn of her passing. Her spirit will always reside within our galleries and within our hearts.

Until We Meet Again

Ruth Ann Blose
1932 – 2023

The Maridon Museum has been blessed with many wonderful volunteers over the years and we are fortunate to say that Ruth Anne Blose was one of them.

Ruth Anne had been an active member of our volunteer family since we opened our doors. Though busy with her many activities and family she always found time for us.

We will miss her lovely smile and gentle ways.

Springtime at The Maridon

The promise of spring ushers in a new exhibit to the Side Gallery of The Maridon Museum. Seventeen objects of porcelain, quartz, ivory, cloisonne, and soapstone including birds, children playing, hatching “peeps,” a vase of flowers, dancing and sitting frogs, a swan with her young, and a flower-adorned clock to announce that spring is here! Please stop in to see these beautiful pieces, we are open from 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Wednesday-Saturday.

Ivory Comes to Life

Mary Hulton Phillips, Founder of The Maridon Museum, was an avid collector of many forms of art. Her interest in, and collection of Asian art, were the driving forces in establishing this museum.

We are pleased to present this new exhibit of 33 ivory objects. Many of Mrs. Phillips’ pieces have been tucked away in storage and never seen.

Gazing at this collection you will experience the elegance of magnificently carved floral baskets and birds, the excitement of Samurai battling on a bridge, offset by the engaging smile of a Happy Buddha with 11 children, depictions of everyday life, elephants on the march, scholars and goddesses and the whimsey of a snail who takes center stage.

Please stop by to enjoy these exquisite objects!

Ceramics/Stoneware By Joyce Kristoffy-Hewlett

A new form of art has arrived at The Maridon Museum Gift Shop. These beautiful works of art are exclusive pieces inspired by the Asian culture of the museum and crafted by Joyce Kristoffy-Hewlett.

Ms. Hewlett, now retired, taught art and pottery at the college level for 25 years. She is a graduate of Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan (BFA) and Rutgers, The State University at New Brunswick, N.J. (MFA).

Hewlett works out of her home studio and she prefers to do one- of- a kind pieces. Most of her objects are wheel thrown, some are hand built, and she makes her own glazes.  They are dishwasher and microwave safe.

Her works have been exhibited nationally and internationally in galleries, shows, and museums.

Come to our gift shop to purchase these unique gifts:

  • 3-piece Saki Sets
  • Rice/Noodle Bowls w/ Chopsticks
  • 3-Piece Ceramic Sushi Set w/ Chopsticks

Explore Our Snuff Bottle Exhibit!

The Maridon Museum Snuff Bottle Exhibit was donated in Loving Memory of James T. “Jim” Sweeney and a dedication plaque can be seen next to the exhibit. If you’ve never seen our snuff bottle exhibit, let us illustrate the purpose and beauty of these tiny works of art for you.

Snuff bottles originated from China during the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) where they were used to hold powdered tobacco. Initially, these bottles were made for the emperor and the court, but eventually expanded to the public. Snuff was understood to have healing powers for common illnesses, so while smoking tobacco was illegal, using snuff was permitted.

It is clear the beauty of snuff bottles supersedes their usefulness! The museum’s collection includes bottles made from hornbill, jade, ivory, cinnabar, amber, glass, enamel, turquoise, porcelain, mother-of-pearl, opal, jasper, hardstone, cloisonne, lapis, quartz, and agate. The sizes are usually around 1 ½” to 3” with a couple as tall as 6”. The variety of shapes and images are extensive and focus on nature, especially mountains and water. These images appealed to all who lived in the cities. Owners of these bottles could be soothed by not only the contents but also by viewing the natural scene on them. Some designs focus on the natural shape of the medium while others reflect the important Chinese themes associated with nature. For example, a gourd design reflects on longevity, while goats coupled with the whirling sun symbolizes the beginning of a great future.

People collect snuff bottles even today for their history and their art. You can find such objects at auction houses such as Christies. Click here for an article from Christie’s talking about the five things to know about collecting snuff bottles.

Please enjoy the photo gallery of some of the museum’s snuff bottle collection so you can appreciate the beauty of these tiny works of art. Better yet, come see the full exhibit for yourself. If you would like, you can call ahead to schedule a docent to learn even more about our snuff bottles as well as the rest of our collection.

Welcome back!

We look forward to seeing you! Please email us at info@maridon.org, if you need to reach us.

The Maridon Featured in Huffington Post

The Maridon was featured in Huffington Post’s article “55 Best Lesser Known Art Museums, Artist Studios, and Art Centers in Northeast USA.” Come visit us to find out just why Malerie Yolen-Cohen, Huffington Post Contributor, wrote “It’s a knockout museum worth a drive from anywhere. The Asian art collection at The Maridon is fascinating on many levels – the most elemental being its stunning beauty and fine craftsmanship.”

Click here to read the article.