Cindy Stockton Moore

an openness to all things lovely
a solo project at Glen Foerd on the Delaware, Philadelphia
On view October 2019 - current 2022
Installation view, 2019. Photograph by Jaime Alvarez

About the project:
A loose narrative of possession, loss, and fragmented history unfolds within Florence Foerderer Tonner's bedroom.

A poet and artist, a collector and benefactor, Florence assumed many roles over time, leaving traces of self within the accumulations of the estate.

In this installation, large-scale ink paintings fill the paneled recesses of the period room, connecting the preserved interior to the cucumber magnolia tree on the grounds of Glen Foerd. This immense tree is estimated to be over 150 years old and may be nearing the end of its own life cycle.

The project builds on research conducted during an artist residency and incorporates Florence Foerderer Tonner’s artwork, poetry, artifacts, and correspondence, interwoven with contemporary poetry, inquiries into the nature of collecting, ideas of excess, and the sympathetic magic of artifact.


[left] Florence Foerderer Tonner's vanity features an ivory set of monogrammed grooming items. Paintings and trunks viewed through mirrored reflections of the installation.
[All installation photographs by Jaime Alvarez]

Installation View, 2019. northeast wall.
In center screen: ‘an openness to all things lovely’ - 8 min loop with music by Aaron David Miller
A video sketchbook exploring the role of the artist in residence - interpreter, interloper, preservationist, snoop and hired help - using the artifacts of the historic home to question the nature of collecting, gendered roles, and visual churning.
Installation View, 2019. East and South Walls

The blue trunk displays a painting by renowned Philadelphia artist, Violet Oakley (1874-1961,) entitled Joy Followed by Tears. This trunk contains painted studies for the wall works and printed textiles with reproduced imagery. One reproduction features a drawing made by Florence Foerderer Tonner: a blue pencil portrait of Edith Emerson, a fellow artist and Violet Oakley’s life partner of forty years.


Installation View, 2019. south and west walls
Florence Foederer Tonner’s Louis Vuitton trunk contains drawn, printed, and painted studies of ephemera around the estate, including scenes from the art gallery curios.
Installation View, 2019. west walls

Portrait of a woman by Thomas Sully (1783 - 1872.) Thomas Sully was a well-known portrait painter based in Philadelphia. Florence’s neighbors and friends, the Biddle Family of the nearby Andalusia estate, commissioned the artist on several occasions.

The tableau on the top of the trunk features poetry, reproductions, and artifacts from the home. The velvet encased photograph is Florence Foerderer Tonner, the small gold framed photograph may also be her. It is an uncertain portrait.

Likewise, this project – an openness to all things lovely– is a speculative portrait, gleaned through the possessions and archives of Glen Foerd on the Delaware. It is titled after a description of Florence Foerderer Tonner from a Lutheran Church of America program booklet.

You can read more about the process below....

I was recently one of two Artists in Residence at the historic
Glen Foerd on the Delaware mansion.

Over the last year and a half, I have been digging around the archives of the estate -- contemplating the nature of 'stuff.' As an artist on site, I explored what access means, how people are remembered, and when things obscure meaning.

Part researcher, part snoop - I made short, experimental animations, planned a series of hard-to-find interventions, and otherwise haunted this historic mansion.

Will what I made add meaning to the site - or contribute to the accumulation?



I was drawn to the correspondence of Florence Tonner.

Sorting through the letters, receipts and poetry left behind, I was offered a glimpse of this resident of Glen Foerd. The compartmentilzation of roles - through class, gender and family - created a fragmented, obscured image.

I am interested in how this fragmented reading relates to historic sites. How do identity and privilege define our view of 'collecting' -- and what ultimately do collections tell us about their owners?

Through the process, I've been contemplating my own relationship to objects, mortality... and the traces of lives left behind.


As I worked, I wove my research at Glen Foerd into other projects.

I featured the site in the music video I created for Endlessly's 'Shaking.'


I drew Glen Foerd's magnificent Cucumber Magnolia tree for my project for The Chalkboard Chronicle at Artyard.

Perhaps I am the one who is haunted.

I cataloged china and tested out ink on cotton, satin and silk...

I played with silverware- and sorted through poetry.


"Infinity" by Florence Tonner

The world, a whirling top will spin
Serenly on! Its way within
The void it finds, where ethers cling,
Because God's hand has twirled the string.

I accumulated too .... drawings of items stored away. They piled up in my studio.


I was aimlessly playing...figuring out my role in this mansion.
Am I an interloper? custodian? trickster? caretaker?

Going through Florence's personal correspondence,
I'm finding clues to who she might have been to different people.

I am a guest that may not have been welcomed -
with access that I certainly would not have been granted -
in a home that continues to overwhelm and intrigue me.




should this not be adequate to your wishes... please enlighten me.
-letter signed "Tremaine"
This project... An openness to all things lovely... will open on October 13, 2019.
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