The life of Boston’s arts patroness typifies the lives of many of the wealthy and cultured Americans who lived during the Gilded Age of American history. We will explore the details of Isabella Stewart Gardner’s life, friends, travels and collections. She broke all kinds of rules while setting up her museum but perhaps we can understand this when we read her personal motto “It is my pleasure.” She arranged things the way she wanted with relationships between objects that may at first escape us. What is left for us is to marvel at the space she created and filled with beautiful things. Led by art historian Mary Woodward, who serves as a guide at several Historic New England properties. She previously served as Public Programs Coordinator and Educator at the Concord Museum. Woodward has a B.A. in Art History from Furman University and a M.A. in Art History from Emory University. She has 40+ years of experience in museums of all shapes and sizes, from the comprehensive collection at the Cleveland Museum of Art to the one-room log cabin birthplace of President James K. Polk.