So, I've talked about politics, movies, theater and books, but not art. I love art. One of my my favorite museums in NYC is the Neue Gallery located at 1048 Fifth Ave. at 88th Street. The architects of the beautiful classic building in which this museum is located, Carrere & Hastinngs, are the same ones who built the New York City Public Library. At one point the building was occupied by Mrs. Cornelius Vanderbilt III and then by the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research. It was purchased by Ronald S. Lauder and Serge Sabarsky in 1994.

Lauder and Sabarsky conceived the idea for the museum. Sabarsky, an art dealer and art exhibition organizer and Lauder, a businessman, philanthropist and art collector were friends for nearly three decades and they shared a passionate commitment for German and Austrian art of the early 20th century. The museum features Austrian artists such as Gustav Klimt and German arists such as Vasily Kandinsky, Egon Schiele and Paul Klee.

Ronald S. Lauder, also heir to the cosmetics fortune, former American ambassador to Austria, once a mayoral candidate, prodigious art collector and major benefactor of Jewish causes, knows a lot about art stolen by the Nazis, much of it from Jews.
Starting in the mid-1990's he became a vocal champion of restitution of the artwork to their rightful heirs, an issue that was then erupting across Europe and the United States after 50 years of silence.
As chairman of the Commission for Art Recovery of the World Jewish Congress, Mr. Lauder has been a patron of scattered efforts to help Jews reclaim what had been theirs. In testimony before Congress, he called these stolen artwork "the last prisoners of war."

Many of the works of the Austrian artists, Egon Schiele and Gustav Klimt, belonged to Jewish collectors before World War II and were stolen and lost during the Nazi years, and many of their owners were killed in the Holocaust. Mr. Lauder, who bought his first Schiele drawings as a teenager with his bar mitzvah money, says that few people paid attention to provenance when he entered the market in the late 1960's under the tutelage of Serge Sabarsky. Both Sabarsky's and Lauder's collections hang in the Neue gallery.

An extra treat that this museum offers is the cafe serving Viennese pastries and coffee.

And then there's...

Have you ever heard of the American artist, Edward Hopper, 1882-1967? I get an email called DelanceyPlace.com and every day it delivers an excerpt from or about a well known person in literature, science, art, education and so on. Today's excerpt was about Edward Hopper. The name was so familiar to me, but I could not for the life of me remember why. Just a bit of research gave me the clue that I needed. "He was born in the small Hudson River town of Nyack, New York State, on 22 July 1882." Several years ago, we took a weekend trip to visit the Hudson Valley and there I was, for the first time, exposed to the Hudson River School Artists. Hopperwas born at the end of this period, but I imagine growing up there, he was influenced by it. In any case, looking now at his paintings, I could not stop. I can't say exactly what it was that attracted me so and kept my attention, but I guess that's what art is about. It's the pull, the attraction and though understanding some theory and techniques can add much to a piece of art, in reality, what matters most is the chemistry you have or don't have with the art. I don't know how it will translate here, but when I viewed these works from the WebMuseum Paris Site on my monitor they were beautiful. The light and air in these paintings stir me like no paintings I've seen before. They also impart a profound sense of time and place. Should you wish to join me at the Whitney, The Met or The Brooklyn Museum of Art some day, what a pleasure it would be. And if you can expound on what makes these paintings so wonderful, I invite you to share.

Summer Interior 1909 (100 Kb); Oil on canvas, 24 x 29 inches; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York

Chop Suey 1929 (130 Kb); Oil on canvas, 32 1/8 x 38 1/8 in; Collection Barney A. Ebsworth

Office at Night 1940 (120 Kb); Oil on canvas, 22 1/8 x 25 inches; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Morning Sun 1952, Oil on canvas, 28 1/8 x 40 1/8 inches; Columbus Museum of Art, Ohio

Rooms by the Sea 1951 , Oil on canvas, 29 x 40 inches; Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Connecticut

Chair Car 1965, Oil on canvas, 40 x 50 inches; Private collection

A Woman in the Sun 1961, Oil on canvas, 40 x 60 inches; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York

Drug Store 1927, Oil on canvas, 29 x 40 inches; The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Early Sunday Morning 1930, Oil on canvas, 35 x 60 in; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York

Gas 1940, Oil on canvas, 26 1/4 x 40 1/4 in; The Museum of Modern Art, New York

Rooms for Tourists 1945, Oil on canvas, 30 x 40 inches; Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Connecticut

Nighthawks 1942 (120 Kb); Oil on canvas, 30 x 60 in; The Art Institute of Chicago

Sunday 1926, Oil on canvas, 29 x 34 in; The Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C.

The Mansard Roof 1923, Watercolor on paper, 13 3/4 x 19 inches; The Brooklyn Museum, New York

The Lighthouse at Two Lights 1929, Oil on canvas, 29 1/2 x 43 1/4 inches; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Blackhead, Monhegan 1916-19, Oil on wood, 9 3/8 x 13 in; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York

Cape Cod Afternoon 1936, Oil on canvas, 34 x 50 inches; Museum of Art, Carnegie Institute, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania


Clay said...

Thanks for sharing the beautiful art work Sherril. I love looking at painings. Sometimes I'll go to St Augustine and spend the entire day at a few art shops that carry some incredible paintings by mostly local artists.

Sherril said...

Ah, so you live in Florida, do you,Clay? Has the hurricane passed you there yet? It is raining the proverbial cats and dogs here in NJ.

Yes, art can be good for the soul and like I said, there is something about these works of Hoppers that just gives me butterflies in my stomach each and every time I look at them. I must get to one of these museums to take a look in person.

And, Clay, thanks for looking.

Anonymous said...

Nice collection of paintings. I particularly enjoy fin de siecle art from Vienna- its nice to see them included on your blog.

Sherril said...

If you come to NYC, be sure to get to see the Neue Galerie.

Dave said...

I am admittedly not much of an art aficionado, but these paintings really do reach out and grab me, esepcially the ones with people in them. Each of those makes you wonder what the personal story is for each person, although half the interest is in imagining what it might be.

If you ever find yourself watching Turner Classic Movies on cable late at night, the "Nighthawks 1942" painting looks exactly like a scene TCM uses for what seems to be filler material between features.

Clay said...

Yes, northern Florida. We got lucky and totally missed the hurricane. Didnt really get much rain from it either. What is you favorite painting of all time Sherril? I'd have to go with Monet's Vanilla Sky. Its simple but stunning. My wild card favorites would have to be almost anything by Salvador Dali.

Sherril said...

Unfortunately my "enlightened" cable company, Cablevision, does not give us Turner Classic Movies (I would love to have it). However, I think I may have seen what you are talking about re the Nighthawks painting. I am so glad you liked Hopper's works here. What is wonderful about paintings and art in general is that each person takes from it what resounds in her/him when looking at it.

I don't know if I can pick a favorite painting of all time, but a few come to mind...most everything of Monet and one of Renoir's: Gabrielle and Jean. I also love the sculpture of Giacometti