Kenneth Stubbs
(American artist, 1907-1967)

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As the exhibition title suggests, this show explores two aspects: Collections and Patrons. It features works from various local collections, including the institutional collection of The George Washington University at Mount Vernon College and the private collection of Professor H. I. Gates, faculty member of the GW Department of Fine Arts and Art History. It also focuses on patrons of The George Washington University and their art donations to the Permanent Collection.

The George Washington University at Mount Vernon College has made available some treasures from its institution collection. These works include two etchings by James Abbott McNeill Whistler; lithographs made by various artists at the Tamarind Institute; and a rare book of costume and set designs for the ballet The Sleeping Beauty by Leon Bakst. The Whistler prints were produced in 1859, when the artist settled in London. Drawing inspiration from the Thames River, these prints exhibit Whistler's expertise in etching, a technique of drawing with a needle on a plate and then biting the line work with acid. To achieve greater accuracy, Whistler often reworked his plates and printed many states of a particular print. The Dimock Gallery has had the opportunity to research these works, and in this context, Lenore Miller, the Director of The Dimock Gallery, has examined the Whistler prints to determine the printing states.

Professor H. I. Gates has avidly collected Japanese woodblock prints and armour for about fifteen years. He has kindly loaned five Japanese woodblock prints, a Samurai fire viewing helmet, wakizashi(short sword) and other pieces of armour. The most unique objects on display are a kabuto(helmet) and me no shita ho(face mask). These artifacts were part of a complete suit of armour. The kabuto is characterized by stylized "ears" (perhaps inspired by a particular animal) or possibly an allusion to an exaggerated tall court cap. The front of the helmet is adorned by an elaborate crest. Professor Gates' interest in samurai armour has been inspirational to his own sculpture.

The second part of this exhibition examines works donated by art patrons to The George Washington University's Permanent Collection, which is administered by The Dimock Gallery. It is through the generosity of alumni and friends of the arts that the University's holdings have grown significantly over the last twenty years. Some of these donors who have gifted works to the Permanent Collection include: Murray Bring; Mitzi and William Kay Daines; Marian and Irving Dodds; Frank B. Hand, Jr.; Douglas A. and Joanne H. Milch; and other notable alumni and area collectors.

The Permanent Collection has continued to focus on the Washington, DC area. Almost ten years ago, 35 works by contemporary Washington-based artists at that time, were donated to The Permanent Collection by Murray Bring. Three of these works, by Charles Coburn, Harry Schoebel and Sidney Guberman, are on display in this exhibition. In recent years veteran Washington artist and GW graduate Alfred McAdams donated his own works, three of which are on display. It is a goal of McAdams to donate works which exemplify his long career as a painter to local collecting institutions. The Dimock Gallery is especially pleased to receive as part of the collection the painting Water Series-3. A similar work from the same series was exhibited at Dimock Gallery exhibition "Allusions: Selected Abstract Paintings" in 1989. Another work on view that has a connection to a prior Dimock Gallery exhibition is a sculpture by Marianna Pineda entitled Harvest. (A survey exhibition of her sculpture, Marianna Pineda: Sculpture, was exhibited in 1996.)

Also exhibited are caricatures by Aline Fruhauf, who was a native of New York but spent the latter half of her career in Washington, DC. Six caricatures were generously donated in 1995 to The George Washington University Permanent Collection by the artist's widower, Erwin Vollmer. (The Smithsonian Institution National Portrait Gallery was also the recipient of numerous caricatures by Aline Fruhauf.) These caricatures illustrate artists, writers and other prominent members of the art world and were executed in a variety of media: woodcut, pen and ink, watercolor, and gouache. One of the works on display depicts Alice Longworth, who was the daughter of Theodore Roosevelt and an avid art collector in Washington, DC. Fruhauf sketched her subject near Dupont Circle, but only had the opportunity to view her back. Twenty-one years earlier, Longworth posed for a caricature by Fruhauf which was exhibited in 1950. The artist felt it was difficult to capture Longworth in caricature because she had so many facial expressions. Both Fruhauf and Longworth were particularly pleased with the outcome of the later caricature, and Longworth autographed the work on display.

Additional recent gifts on view include photographs from Toscana -Selected Images of Tuscany by the contemporary photographer Joel Meyerowitz. The George Washington University Permanent Collection has a strong collection of contemporary photography, rooted in a core collection of gifts dating back to the 1980s, when more than 500 photographs were acquired through the generosity of alumni and friends. An exhibition of some of these images Contemporary Photographs from the GW Permanent Collection(October-November 1984) was held in The Dimock Gallery, which included the work of Halsman, Jaffee, Morgan, Stettner, and Webb, among others. It is with this in mind that The George Washington University Dimock Gallery was pleased to receive these photographs in 1997 from Douglas A. and Joanne H. Milch.

Older acquisitions donated to The George Washington University are also exhibited in Collections/Patrons. These include engravings by William Hogarth and Portrait of a Man by Norman Rockwell. Renewed interest in this Rockwell painting was inspired by an appraisal of the work in October 1997. On the recommendation of the appraiser, Ted Cooper, The Dimock Gallery staff contacted The Norman Rockwell Museum at Stockbridge, MA. Even though this painting was not listed in the catalog raisonne of Rockwell's work, Linda Szekely, Curator of Norman Rockwell Collections, was able to identify the sitter as Fred Hildebrandt, a friend and model of Rockwell's when he lived in New Rochelle during the 1920s and 30s. In the early thirties, the usually prolific Rockwell was overly critical of his work which resulted in a decreased output of his art. Szekely believes that this work was destined for a beer advertisement, but abandoned by the artist.

Lenore Miller, Curator of Collections/Patrons and Director of The Dimock Gallery, also chose to exhibit works by Kenneth Stubbs. Washington artist Stubbs, a painter and designer, Stubbs served as Professor of Art at The George Washington University, 1941-1953, and was also an Instructor of Painting and Drawing at the Corcoran School of Art, 1935-1953. The three works on display were loaned courtesy of Marin-Price Galleries, Bethesda, MD.

The Dimock Gallery staff is grateful to all the lenders: private, institutional, and galleries, who have loaned works to Collections/Patrons. It is due to their generosity that The Dimock Gallery was able to assemble an eclectic, educational and creative display of artworks, which reveal the diverse collecting trends of various collectors and patrons.

For more information, please contact Lenore Miller, Director of GW's Dimock Gallery, at (202) 994-1525.

Text from Dimock Gallery website,