An Autobiography: Chapter 43, Cleveland Art Museum


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Nashville, Tennessee, is fortunate to have fine museums, and through my graphics corporation, Thurston Moore Country, Ltd., I have produced postcards for several of these: Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art; Belle Meade Plantation; The Parthenon; Upper Room and Chapel Museum; and the Adventure Science Center. When Georgianna and I traveled to other cities, we always tried to visit at least one museum. To name a few we visited: The Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, Massachusetts; the Henry Ford Museum; the Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena, California; the Field Museum of Natural History and the Art Institute of Chicago.

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Since 2001, I have represented two Japanese artists who reside in Tokyo: Masaaki Tanaka and his wife, Chikako. In 1979, the Art Institute of Chicago purchased five limited edition/numbered serigraphs by Masaaki, and they are in the permanent collection of their department of Asian art.

Writing about Chicago reminds me of the time Georgianna and I spent the day walking in and out of museums, and in the afternoon walked a long distance to the Adler Planetarium. We were so tried that we sat down to rest a few minutes, and we both fell sound asleep with people walking by!

New York City has more than 100 museums covering every subject imaginable. We loved the Guggenheim Museum, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, with its spiral staircase and unique museum space. And, of course, the Metropolitan Museum of Art ranks with the great museums of the world. On one of our visits there, we discovered a work by Albert Bierstadt (1830-1912). We sat there for a long time, looking at that masterpiece of the Rocky Mountains, which was our home for many years. From then on, Bierstadt was one of our favorite artists.

We haunted The Frick Collection several times while we lived in New York, studying the magnificent paintings they have of James Abbott McNeill Whistler (1834-1903), trying to reconcile the fact that “our Whistler,” which is a magnificent oil painting of his model and mistress, Maud Franklin, is genuine. We have had appraisals both pro and con.

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