After an unseasonably warm winter, Washington got a chill this week. Coincidence that the cold comes on just as we’re saying good-bye to a certain, summery blossom? In spite of a slight warm up today and through the weekend, we prefer to think not.
Over the summer, I presented a gallery talk on a series of 12 works by Augustus Vincent Tack, commissioned by Duncan Phillips in 1928. It is currently reinstalled in the wood-paneled Music Room, for which it was originally created. Below are excerpts from the discussion. Join me on December 15 at 6:30 pm for the next in our series of Director’s Perspectives, this time on work by Joseph Marioni.
Duncan Phillips and Augustus Vincent Tack met in 1914 and developed a deep and enduring friendship. Painter and patron had a lot in common: both were born in Pittsburgh and both had deep ties to Yale. Tack played an important role in fostering Duncan Phillips’s appreciation of the power and beauty of modern art.
The Phillips Collection owns seventy-five Tack paintings. “Tack” never became a household name. Whether Tack was fashionable was not the point. Duncan Phillips was passionately engaged in supporting emerging American artists alongside Europeans. The project was never about a suite of trophies, but about getting to know the artist and collecting his work in depth. Continue reading
Joseph Marioni’s work is a point of departure for a major symposium on painting tomorrow, Saturday, December 10, 2-5 pm. Registration is not required, and it’s included in the cost of museum admission (free for members and students with ID), so feel free to stop by. You’ll hear from Phillips Director Dorothy Kosinski, art historian and critic Michael Fried, National Gallery of Art curator Harry Cooper, Museum of Modern Art curator John Elderfield, and art historian and critic Karen Wilkin.