Published: October 17, 2000
Trade News from Around the World
Massachusett’s highest court ruled October 9 that 17 paintings – including works by Claude Monet, Camille Pissarro and Eugene Boudin, among others – currently at Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts can’t be sold by the trust that owns them in order to brighten the cultural scene of the struggling blue-collar city of Lawrence, reports Martin Finucane of the Associated Press. “The bequest makes clear that the paintings may not be sold by the trustees,” the Supreme Judicial Court said in an eight-page ruling written by Justice John Greaney. The three most prominent works have a combined value of $7.5 million, according to one estimate. The paintings, including Monet’s “Field of Poppies, near Giverny,” were bequeathed to a trust, The White Fund, by the Rev. William E. Wolcott in 1911. Wolcott said the paintings should be displayed at the MFA until they could be shown in a public art gallery in Lawrence, a mill city 25 miles north of Boston. Almost 90 years later, there is still no public art gallery in Lawrence. The MFA has kept the paintings, exhibiting the three most famous and storing the rest.
Alan Goldberg, president of First Albany Corporation and former chairman of the board of the Albany Institute of History & Art, Albany, N.Y., has made a gift of $1 million to the institute towards its new $5.6 million initiative, “Achieving Excellence in the Twenty-first Century.” Goldberg has been involved with the Albany Institute for twelve years, and led the board from 1994-1999. This gift is his largest charitable contribution. He joins philanthropist and AIHA trustee Matthew Bender, IV as a $1 million donor to the Albany Institute’s new fundraising campaign.
The Complete Jacob Lawrence, a two-volume catalog of the black American artist’s work edited by Peter Nesbett and research editor Michelle DuBois, was released October 10 by the University of Washington Press. Nesbett is founder and executive director of the Jacob Lawrence Catalogue Raisonne Project. The work took five years to complete. Lawrence, who painted until his death, is the first African-American artist to have a catalogue raisonne. According to the Associated Press, Nesbett created a nonprofit public charity to finance the undertaking, collecting nearly $1 million around the country. He assembled a core staff of three: himself, DuBois and photography coordinator Stephanie Ellis-Smith.
The Portland Museum of Art (PMA), Portland, Me., has received a gift of $100,000 from the Hannaford Charitable Foundation toward the Museum’s Century III Campaign. This gift will support the museum’s efforts to preserve the McLellan-Sweat House and the L.D.M. Sweat Memorial Galleries.
A $100 million endowment has been established for the Autry Museum of Western Heritage, Los Angeles, Calif., and is meant to help the institution become more self-supporting, reports the AP wire. “These secured funds will allow the museum to cover its basic operations, which in turn will provide it the freedom to focus on raising funds for the ambitious projects that have been set by its staff and board of trustees,” said Jackie Autry, widow of museum namesake Gene Autry.
To commemorate the work of devoted trustee Julie Palley and her husband Sandy, who so tragically and suddenly lost their lives on September 3, the Museum of American Folk Art, New York City, has established The Julie and Sandy Fund for Staff Advancement. The fund will continue Julie Palley’s interest in furthering staff advancement by enabling members of the staff to participate in professional conferences, such as the College Art Association and the American Association of Museums, seminars, courses, and other programs designed to assist in their professional development.
More than one thousand buried antique bottles – from perfume bottles to tiny corked medicine vials to two-handled jugs – have emerged during construction work along a pedestrian walkway in Ashland, Ore. Initial estimates have concluded the bottles span from the 1890s through World War II, said Brandon Goldman, assistant city planner. Shards of English pottery from the 1880s and 1890s, Japanese pottery fragments from the 1930s, a teapot and a hand-blown light bulb with an intact filament also were found in the dirt, Mark Tveskov, assistant professor of anthropology at SOU, told the Associated Press.
Michele Quinn joins Onview.com as director of Brooke Alexander Editions. Quinn was formerly a vice president and head of the print department at Christie’s East, a business analyst at Sotheby’s and ran Gemini GEL at Joni Moisant Weyl, the New York representative of the LA-based print publisher specializing in contemporary prints and multiples. Brooke Alexander Editions was acquired by Onview.com earlier this year. In her new role, Quinn will manage the daily operations and sales management of the gallery.
William P. Youngworth III, a former antiques dealer who played an intriguing part in the decade-old drama of the Gardner Museum’s $300 million art heist was released from custody in Boston, Mass., October 13 and says he still intends to claim a reward for the stolen artwork reports Theo Emery of the Associated Press: The Supreme Judicial Court threw out his 1997 indictment as a “habitual offender. Youngworth said his attorney, Lisa Siegel Belanger, has been talking with museum officials and federal investigators, and said he is “hopeful” the paintings can be returned, so “we can put this all behind us.”
The Seattle Art Museum has reached a settlement with the oldest art gallery in New York City in the case of a post-Impressionist painting that was looted by the Nazis, reports the AP wire. The museum has 30 days to choose at least one work of art from the holdings of Knoedler & Co. or opt instead for cash to buy a “significant addition to the museum’s collection” in compensation for the loss of “Odalisque,” executed by Henri Matisse in 1928. Monetary terms were withheld, but museum director Mimi Gates said Knoedler also would cover all legal, research and travel costs and waive payment of a $143,000 fine a federal judge imposed on the museum last month for failing to show proof of legal ownership in a timely way.
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