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Tate’s Coming Show: Is There A U.S. Counterpart?

NPG P1153; Kenneth Clark, Baron Clark by Bernard Lee ('Bern') Schwartz

Next week, Tate Britain will open what could be an excellent exhibition built around the career and influence of Kenneth Clark (pictured). It makes me wonder if anyone here in the U.S. could qualify for such treatment. The exhibition, titled Kenneth Clark - Looking for Civilisation,  ...explores the impact of art historian, public servant and broadcaster Kenneth Clark (1903–1983), widely seen as one of the most influential figures in British art of the twentieth century. The exhibition examines Clark’s role as a patron and collector, art … [Read more...]

Collector Jonathan Demme Joins The Sellers

JDemme

In the late 1990s, I was pleased to meet director Jonathan Demme, maker of Silence of the Lambs, Married to the Mob and Philadelphia, among other movies, and to listen to him talk about his collecting of Haitian art. He preparing for an exhibition of more than 100 works drawn from his collection at the gallery at Equitable Center. I wrote about him and the exhibition for The New York Times in an article headlined A Convert Spreads the Word for Haitian Art. Demme quickly became known as the owner of one of the most, if not the most, … [Read more...]

Denver Makes Three: Are More Coming?

DenverCaillebotte

Today the Denver Art Museum announced the bequest of 22 Impressionist paintings from Frederick C. Hamilton, its long-time chairman of the board (though he stepped down from the position last year).  The press release (which is not yet up on its website) said it would elevate the museum's Impressionist collection to one of the best in the West: The gift includes a painting by Vincent van Gogh, Edge of a Wheat Field with Poppies, the first Van Gogh artwork to enter the museum’s collection; four works by the impressionist master Claude Monet … [Read more...]

Herb And Dorothy, The Sequel

herb-and-dorothy-50x50

Remember Herb and Dorothy Vogel? Of course you do. They are the New York couple, the postal clerk and the school librarian, who collected art using only his salary for years -- and eventually gave most of it away to the National Gallery in Washington and then to 50 museums, one each in every state. They were the subject of a documentary in 2009 called "Herb and Dorothy." I wrote about it then for The Art Newspaper, and to this day it is usually one of the most-viewed articles on my personal website. On Friday, a second documentary by Megumi … [Read more...]

Cupid Strikes, And Worcester Gets A Great Gift

WAMVeroneseUnframed

Hester Diamond, well-known as a collector of Old Masters, has made a nice gift to the Worcester Museum of Art -- it's a tale that shows both her and Matthias Waschek, the museum’s director, to be pretty crafty. First the gift: it's a painting by Veronese titled Venus Disarming Cupid, circa 1560, and according to the Worcester museum is "one of the few works by the famed Renaissance master still in private hands." It shows a smiling Venus playfully taking away the bow of her son Cupid, stopping him in his tracks. The work is currently valued … [Read more...]

Getting More Expansive, Dallas Collectors Spread Out

Rachofsky House

Funny thing about collecting: Most of the time, collections simply grow, rarely shrinking, and they need more space. Case in point: Dallas collectors Cindy and Howard Rachofsky. They and another couple, Amy and Vernon Faulconer, are opening a building to show their collections called The Warehouse. It's 18,000 sq. ft. and is a joint venture with another couple, Amy and Vernon Faulconer. The first show is titled Parallel Views: Italian and Japanese Art from the 1950s, 60s and 70s. The Warehouse will also sometimes borrow works from other private … [Read more...]

In Art, A Male-Female Difference

ManatMoMA

As long as I can remember, I've been troubled by what I have here called "the male gap," the fact that art seems to be much more appreciated by women than men. At least it's women who go to museums more frequently. I don't think that's because of museum hours anymore -- though it used to be. Most women now work, and museums have more night hours. But women still outnumber men at art museums -- museum directors tell me that, and even government statistics, weak as they are on arts numbers, bear that out. I think it's partly because viewing … [Read more...]

The Billion-Dollar Cubist Gift: Donor-Wise

Leger-Typographer

As director Thomas P. Campbell said in the Metropolitan Museum's press release announcing Leonard Lauder's promised gift of his collection of Cubist art, it is "truly transformational for the Metropolitan Museum." I wish it were transformational for other collectors and would-be donors of art to museum. With this gift, Lauder showed the way -- much as he did in 2008. Then, within days of the announcement of Stephen A. Schwarzman's $100 million gift to the New York Public Library, he gave $137 million to the Whitney. But contrast … [Read more...]

What Qualifies Someone As A True Collector?

TexasLonghornchair

If you are interested in collecting, and how various collections come together, you might pick up a copy of the April issue of Traditional Home magazine. In it, under the headline Seats Of Learning, I chronicle how a woman named Diane Jacobsen, already a collector of American art, became an avid acquisitor of chairs. It all began about six years ago, when she bought a couple, almost on a whim, then more, then noticed how they engaged people. She researched and learned, and now owns about 50; 43 of them are touring museums around the country … [Read more...]

Brooklyn Museum Picks Up A Couple Of Rembrandts

Rembrandt-Shaded Eyes

On loan, that is -- but still. Brooklyn announced the other day that two paintings by Rembrandt, Self-Portrait with Shaded Eyes (1634) and Portrait of Anthonie Coopal (1635), will go on view along with four other seventeenth-century Dutch portraits and genre scenes beginning Mar. 18 in the museum's Beaux-Arts Court. The six paintings are all on long-term loan from a private New York collection. That collector, anonymous in the press release, is Thomas Kaplan. But first, more about the Rembrandts: Both were done when Rembrandt was in … [Read more...]

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