3 HOT, new museums you must see!

The Barnes at Philadelphia
Philadelphia, PA

The art thieves of the world are poised for action!

The Barnes Foundation’s $25 BILLION art collection is moving! The works of art; 181 Renoirs, 69 Cezannes, and 59 Matisses, along with works of Monet, Degas, Seuret, Titian and Picasso with many, many other artifacts are being transported from Dr. Albert C. Barnes’ private mansion/museum, located in a quiet suburban town outside Philadelphia, to the heart of Philadelphia’s downtown museum complex. The convoys of trucks will be rollin’ down Philadelphia’s expressways and via short cuts through sketchy neighborhoods. The FBI has been called in and cloak and dagger tactics are being taken with police escorts and double-bluffs with some convoy trucks heavily guarded carrying only one painting, others loaded to the brim with anti-hijack security systems. Not since World War II, when governments moved their collections from the museums to prevent their destruction, have we seen the magnitude of a move like this.

Dr. Barnes, 1872-1951, born to a working class family, grew up in Philadelphia, made his fortune in the pharmaceutical industry, and became passionate about bringing art to the underprivileged. He began his collections of Impressionist artists long before they were recognized as masterpieces. Now these masterpieces will be displayed just as Dr. Barnes desired, in their own brand new museum, The Barnes at Philadelphia.

Watch this video of the intriguing mystery surrounding the move of the Barnes Collection.
Click here if unable to view the video.

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Crystal Bridges Museum
Bentonville, AK

The dream of Alice Walton, heir to the Wal-Mart fortune, has come true!  The Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art opened in 2011 in the small Arkansas town of Bentonville.  The architect for the buildings was the brilliant Israeli-born Bostonian, Moshe Safdie. The land is wooded and intimate (the setting of Ms. Walton’s father, Sam Walton’s, first five-and-dime store in 1951.) 

And the collection…Wow! Works by American giants, from Benjamin West and Georgia O’Keefe, to Jim Dine and Joan Mitchell, are brought to a region that has until now had little opportunity to view the glories of America’s artistic heritage. 

The Crystal Bridges Museum will very possibly be a place of pilgrimage for art lovers from around the world.

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Clyfford Still Museum
Denver, CO

A graceful, small museum, reserved for experiencing just ONE great artist’s work has just opened in downtown Denver!  Clyfford Still, 1904-1980, was a notoriously cantankerous and private artist who kept almost every piece of art he ever made; paintings on canvas (825), works on paper (1,575) and sculptures (3).  He still is renowned for lighting the fuse for the movement of Abstract Expressionism…a movement of hugely scaled style with no recognizable subject matter. Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko, Willem de Kooning, and Barnett Newman followed his lead a few years later. 

Still’s will stipulated that his estate be bequeathed to an American city that would build a museum exclusively for these works of art.  None of the works could be sold, or given, or exchanged for funds.  And Denver did it!! The private community raised $47 million with NO taxes levied!  The result is an exquisite and light-filled space for this marvelous artist.

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2012-01-31T19:51:49+00:00

12 Comments

  1. Chloe January 31, 2012 at 8:17 pm - Reply

    Ms. Walton has been criticized for spending her fortune on the Crystal Bridges Museum instead of other social causes. Some critics think that the museum is not money well spent compared to other issues, but I think that they need to look closer at what is being projected here. Ms. Walton provides such masterpieces for the pure enjoyment of the entire community, as opposed to keeping or selling the pieces for private showing. The whole undertaking in itself has provided jobs for local workers while mostly using local materials and supplies, all the while promoting tourism and exclusivity to the town of Bentonville. Ms. Walton has presented a free of charge environment for people of the community to revel in such art that normally would not be available for viewing without her initiative.

  2. Roxene Sloate February 1, 2012 at 11:26 pm - Reply

    The barnes collection is most amazing and I would love to see it agin. I particularly love those Matisse lunettes! The other 2 museums are certainly on my bucket list – the architecture is as exciting as the contents. Roxene

  3. Gigi Woodward February 2, 2012 at 4:21 am - Reply

    Every blog you manage to open doors to such a wealth of information. I have learned so much from your entries and I find myself carry them in my thoughts throughout the week. For example, I have never thought about the transporting of these treasures through a major city. I will be making my plans for a trip to Pa. to view the Barnes collection in a new location. I understand the museum is going to duplicate the arrangement from the original Barnes collection. The Crystal Bridges Museum looks beautiful. Why are there always people ready to criticize money for the arts? Is it really just entertainment or does it open our history and define creativity to the masses, thue encouraging more thought and more creativity. As far as, Clyfford Still, I have seen his paintings, but did not know a lot about him. Once again you have cast a light on him. Is he a self taught outsider artist? Kirby, thank you for so very much taking the time to put this together allowing us into your vast amount of research and personal info. Keep opening those doors!

  4. Lydia Pettis February 2, 2012 at 5:31 am - Reply

    To which museum shall we go first?! Wish a handful of adventurers could go on an extended tour of all three. Anybody interested?

  5. Vic DePratti February 4, 2012 at 4:22 am - Reply

    Hi Kirby. Interesting group. Have you seen the Gardner Museum in Boston. It is small but eloquent. Saw it first when I was 10 years old. Returned many times. Probably most famous as the scene of the great American museum robbery. Still not solved nor resolved. Vicd

  6. Vic DePratti February 4, 2012 at 4:25 am - Reply

    Hi Kirby. Interesting group. Have you seen the Gardner museum in Boston. Small but eloquent. I saw it first when I was 10. Returned many times since. Probably most famous as the scene of one of America’s most infamous museum robbery. Never solved. Still being resolved. Vic

  7. Diane Rudy February 5, 2012 at 8:00 pm - Reply

    Wonderful, Kirby. Soooooo informative! I’ll pass it on.
    Diane Rudy

  8. Donna Turner February 6, 2012 at 3:16 am - Reply

    Hi Kirby,

    Thank you for the wonderful exposure to these exciting galleries! It makes me want to drop everything and start off on a road trip to see them all. I would like to see more posts like this. I’m sure you have more gems where these came from. Thank you

    Donna Turner

  9. Elenor Face April 4, 2012 at 6:18 pm - Reply

    I really like your writing style, superb information, thanks for putting up : D.

    • kkeditor April 4, 2012 at 6:36 pm - Reply

      Many thx, D! We have lots of plans for art/science/theology/contemp. blogs! Stay tuned! kirby

  10. Luna Menasco April 10, 2012 at 5:06 am - Reply

    I got what you intend, thankyou for putting up.Woh I am glad to find this website through google. “Food is the most primitive form of comfort.” by Sheila Graham.

  11. Ina Cantor January 24, 2013 at 1:19 pm - Reply

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge and love of art and the world we live in. I look forward to your Blogs and watch them over and over. You are an exceptional artist and a very special lady. I miss you!
    Ina

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