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Once in a Lifetime Opportunity: Herdle Sisters’ Jewelry at Art & Treasures

Submitted by Lois Sumberg, Gallery Council member

Diamonds, pearls, coral, sterling silver, 14K gold, braided hair! See them all used in wonderful jewelry bequeathed to the MAG by the iconic Herdle sisters, Gertrude and Isabel, and for sale at Art & Treasures.

Georg Jensen, Ron Pearson, Hampden Dueber

Georg Jensen, Ron Pearson, Hampden Dueber

Collectors can drool over a 14K gold brooch designed by Rochester’s own Ron Pearson (above) or the bird pin (above) and labradorite rings by Georg Jensen. And what about the Victorian braided hair necklace. What collector wouldn’t die to have it! And there is much more, a nearly 1K diamond ring set in yellow gold, a man’s gold pocket watch by Hampden Dueber (above), a lady’s 14K gold pendant watch, I could go on and on. But the best thing to do is to come to the sale and see it all.

If you don’t know anything about the Herdle sisters, suffice it to say their influence on the MAG’s growth from an infant gallery to an important museum was monumental. Fully half of MAG’s 11,000 works were acquired on their watch. Their tenure at the Memorial Art Gallery spanned fifty years. Gertrude took over as the MAG’s second director in 1922 after the untimely death of her father, the MAG’s first director. She retired in 1962. In 1932, her sister, Isabel, joined her as Assistant Director in charge of exhibitions, programs and collections and retired in 1972.

Gertrude Herdle Timeline
Visit the MAG timeline to read more about the Herdle sisters.

If you like what you see, come to the Art & Treasures Sale and a piece of jewelry with a history can be yours.

Art & Treasures
June 25-28
Sponsored by the Gallery Council of the Memorial Art Gallery, all sales benefit the Memorial Art Gallery.

Art & Treasures 2015 sneak peek at Len Roemer Paintings

Submitted by Lois Sumberg, Gallery Council member

Wow! I can’t believe our luck. The 2015 Art & Treasures Sale just received 16 paintings by local artist Len Roemer. Most are painted in oil, a few in watercolor. Roemer studied with Fairport native Carl Peters (1897-1980), a nationally renowned painter involved in the Public Works Arts (WPA) projects during the 1930’s. MAG will present Art for the People: Carl Peters and the Rochester WPA Murals in October 2015.

Roemer-Children Oil



Roemer paints in the tradition of Peters, creating landscapes that blend together Realism and Impressionism. He paints boldly in a loose flowing style. His paintings have been described as “Carl Peters on LSD,” because they use much more color and paint than Peters.

If you like what you see, come to the Art & Treasures Sale and one of these paintings can be yours.

$10 at the door on Thursday, June 25, gets you into our early bird sale. Shop to your heart’s content from 6-8 PM and scoop up the best bargains the sale has to offer.

The sale is open to the public Friday, June 26 and Saturday, June 27, 10 am-4 pm and Sunday, June 28 (Bargain Day), noon-3 pm in Cutler Union. No admission charge! Sponsored by the Gallery Council of the Memorial Art Gallery, all sales benefit the Memorial Art Gallery.

You can also donate to the sale. Donation drop off days are Tuesday-Wednesday, 10 am-4 pm; Thursday, 9 am-Noon at Cutler Union at MAG. All donations are tax deductible.

New Art for MAG

At Tuesday’s Art Committee meeting, we brought seven new works into the MAG collection. One is already on view and others will soon be installed around the galleries. Keep a close eye out!

Three Fujins, 1995

Three Fujins, 1995

Hung Liu
Three Fujins, 1995
96 in. x 126 in. x 12 in. (243.84 cm x 320.04 cm x 30.48 cm)
Oil on canvas
Gift of Gerald and Ellen Sigal and Marion Stratton Gould Fund

Waning Light, 1880-1889

Waning Light, 1880-1889

Alfred Thompson Bricher
Waning Light, 1880-1889
15 3/16 in. x 33 1/4 in. (38.5 cm x 84.5 cm)
Oil on canvas
Gift of Jacqueline Stemmler Adams in Memory of Dr. James Thomas Adams

The Martyrdom of St. Ludmilla, 1864

The Martyrdom of St. Ludmilla, 1864

Gabriel Cornelius Ritter von Max
The Martyrdom of St. Ludmilla, 1864
32 in. x 39 5/16 in. (81.3 cm x 99.8 cm)
Oil on canvas

Idealised Heterosexual Couple, 2013

Idealised Heterosexual Couple, 2013

Grayson Perry
Idealised Heterosexual Couple, 2013
20 7/8 in. x 11 13/16 in. (53 cm x 30 cm)
Glazed ceramic

Rembrandt, 1968

Rembrandt, 1968

Salvador Dali
Rembrandt, 1968
11 in. x 7 in. (28 cm x 17.8 cm)
Bequest of Ronald Kransler

Dancer Putting On her Slipper (Danseuse mettant son Chausson), ca. 1892

Dancer Putting On her Slipper (Danseuse mettant son Chausson), ca. 1892

Edgar Degas
Dancer Putting On her Slipper (Danseuse mettant son Chausson), ca. 1892
11 1/8 in. x 8 3/4 in. (28.26 cm x 22.23 cm)
Bequest of Ronald Kransler
[Yes, it’s really crossed out like that in the print—it’s a print made after the etching plate was cancelled.]

Pass with the Cape (Jeu de Cape), 1961

Pass with the Cape (Jeu de Cape), 1961

Pablo Picasso
Pass with the Cape (Jeu de Cape), 1961
9 5/8 in. x 12 1/2 in. (24.5 cm x 31.8 cm)
Bequest of Ronald Kransler

Voices of the Artist: Junior Version

Submitted by: Lindsay Jones, Summer 2015 Lucy Burne Gallery Intern

It’s important to know what an artist is thinking when they are creating a work. The delightful Children’s Art Show in the Lucy Burne Gallery at the Creative Workshop shows us that children have a magical way of thinking though artwork. With this idea in mind, made it my mission to learn just what these young artists had on their minds. I asked them.

The youngest of the groups I had the pleasure of talking to was Carol Kase’s Art Class for 4 to 6 year olds. The kids were beyond excited to tell me about their favorite parts of the class. Ali M. told me that the best part of class was making her bowl that is featured in the show. She says “I took a big piece of clay and just made it into a circle. Then I rolled it around and around and around!” Evelyn S.’s fish bowl is in the show. She really liked that project because her favorite part was “when we got to draw and make stuff with crayons” but she later tells me with a huge smile on her face that she “loved using the watercolor paints”. When I interrupted Christopher R.’s drawing he told me “I only like drawing, that’s my favorite. It’s ‘cause I’m always thinking!”

Ali bowl and fish bowl

I then took a trip down to Linda DelMonte’s Clay Creation Class for 7 to 9 year olds, where I was welcomed with “hey someone’s here!” The class was so excited to have a visitor and somebody new to talk to. I asked Marilena D. first about her bird house in the Children’s Art Show. She said “my favorite thing about making the bird house is by glazing it because it will look beautiful when it comes out”. Then she told me she used purple, pink and green. But she used green because “the caterpillar was on the handle so I wanted to make that green and I wanted to make the grass green”. Teagan B. told me she had her hands in the show. She said her favorite part was “making the platform” because “I’m really good at putting stamps on those”. As a class however, they all loved glazing and choosing where the bright colors went.

Marilena birdhouse - clay creations

Tegan in the Creative Workshop Spring Show

In Eddie Davis’ Cartooning Class for 8 to 12 Year Olds, students were working away at a new cartoon. I asked Will about his cartoon in the show. He said, “my favorite part was drawing the flowers; I kind of wanted to over cross the flowers or leave the separate. I like how you didn’t have to draw a specific background; you could draw whatever you wanted”. Joel told me all about “Super Spider and the rest of his team” (the character he chose to focus on for the show). He says “I liked thinking about everything he could do”. Evan was telling me about his robot. He was kind of quiet at first, but the he explained his piece by saying “it doesn’t have any colors; I don’t like using any colors ever”.

Will and Joel in the Creative Workshop

Make sure you stop by and check out these marvelous works made by our fabulous little artists. The Children’s Art Show will be up in the Lucy Burn Gallery until June 5th, and the kids will be taking down their work on the 6th. Don’t miss out on this awesome show!


Mix & Matte

So, do you have the kind of mind and imagination that takes you wandering hither and yon? Are you the kind of person who, when you get on the internet to look something up, ends up a million cyber miles from your destination? Interested in a class that lets you explore? The Creative Workshop can help!

You have the kind of intuition suited to this multifaceted journey in art. Like a big “kid” you like to play with all kinds of materials: wood, paper, (scissors…oh, sorry, it’s the kid talking), paint, cardboard, buttons, coins, fabric, metal, beads, branches, etc., this class, Mixed Media & College, will lead you to pick your favorites for two and three dimensional projects. The first half of the class will focus on different types of collage, and the second half on assemblage (which is a fancy French term for putting found pieces and mixed media together to make a three dimensional object) like that pictured here.

Works be Kathleen Nicastro

Above is a piece (click on it to view a larger image) from a whimsical series I did a number of years ago which had me exploring the issues of working in a limited palette (mostly black & white), with a limited scale, and in humble material (wood). But as much as I have been involved with making art this last many years, this class isn’t about me…it’s about you, and what you’ve always wanted to make or have always wondered about making. My goal in offering this class in the Creative Workshop is to set that wild imagination of yours free enough to make what-ever it is you want to make. You will have as much freedom to work as you like, but if you seek the comforting and very necessary boundaries of limits, but can’t seem to set them for yourself, then that’s what I’m here for. I’ll help you “stick to your plan” (that’s where the Matte comes in , in case you were wondering…) and we’ll do our best collaboration in these six sessions to make and build works of art that you will be happy and proud to call your own!

Join us, won’t you on six summer Tuesday nights from 6:30 – 9:30 for grown-up fun (and besides, it’s a great excuse for getting out of doing the dinner dishes!) Hope to see you at the Workshop!

Pictured above:
Kathleen Nicastro, Winter Self Portrait, Assemblage (left) and Kathleen Nicastro, Winter Café, Assemblage (right)

Alex the Archaeologist visits

Below is an excerpt from a note from one of our Docents. She was so impressed with the 6th grade students from Mercy High School who came for a Passport to the Past tour. As she describes, the preparation work they did with “Alex the Archaeologist” was reflected in their tour experience. Please read on to hear about a school tour at MAG from a Docent’s perspective.

Alex the Archaeologist

Alex the Archaeologist in the Mercy classroom

We started our tour at the Ancient Middle East Gallery, which consists of cases, filled with ancient artifacts.  Normally, this is not the most exciting part of PP tour, but immediately the students were very engaged with the objects, which surprised me a bit.  Of course they had studied  Nomadic Cultures and early  settlement along the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers,  and things like cuneiform tablets.  But they were really interested in all the objects in the cases, where they came from, how old they were, what were they used for,  why did we have a broken bowl, etc.  They were very impressed with the idea that the things they were looking at had been used by ancient peoples in their everyday lives.

The students told me that they had been visited by Alex the Archaeologist, how much they enjoyed it and how much they learned.  I can only conclude that the students’  interest in and excitement about the objects in the cases and the objects they saw throughout the tour was a direct result of their experience with Alex the.  His visit really gave the artifacts meaning beyond what I was telling them and enhanced the whole MAG Passport to the Past Tour.

I hope more students have the “Alex” experience, because I saw first hand how enriching it was and how it complemented and strengthened the MAG tour experience.

~ Jane

SPECIAL NOTE:  Our newest eBook, Ancient Greece: Exploring Ancient Artifacts with Alex the Archaeologist has been published and is designed for classroom use by grades 6–12. The book, which meet Common Core standards, is available free from the iTunes Store. Read more about this book and also our first eBook, Ancient Egypt: Exploring Ancient Artifacts with Alex the Archaeologist, here.

Art Magic – The 2015 Kid’s Show

There is something so magical about kids’ art.

Allison Zon

Pastel by Allison Z

The artwork currently on view in the Winter 2015 Kid’s Show at the Creative Workshop features work from kids [aka ARTISTS] of all ages [4-15 years] with a diverse array of subject matter and medium, displayed side by side.

WWII Mayhem by Ian G.

WWII Mayhem by Ian G.

Students in our winter children’s art classes have been having fun exploring, learning, and developing their artistic skills to create some great pieces for the show. It has been exciting to see our students from the first day of class improve as artists and create a lot of fantastic work.

Clay Birds by Resse E. and Marisole M.

Clay Birds by Resse E. and Marisole M.

One of the most interesting series of works in the show is the ceramic birds from Linda DelMonte’s Clay Creations classes. Each of the birds began as a simple pinch pot. As students sculpted the wings, eyes, and legs, each bird developed its own quirky personality. Some of the birds are brightly colored with polka-dotted bodies and others have starry eyes. The funny little winged animals are scattered throughout the gallery, so be sure to look closely!

Everything in the show is dynamic, unique, and each work has its own story. The artwork created by all of our dedicated and creative young artists is exciting and inspiring – come by the Creative Workshop to see the show.  On view until March 6th!

Changes in the Wilson Gallery

New art has been installed just outside the Grand Gallery at MAG.

"Untitled" by Kuwayama
Tadaaki Kuwayama
American, born in Nagoya, Japan, 1932
Untitled, 1968
Acrylic paint on canvas with aluminum strips

When Tadaaki Kuwayama arrived in America in 1958, Abstract Expressionism, an often gestural, energetic, and performative style, dominated the art scene and he found himself rebelling against its aesthetic. His sleek, geometric paintings positioned him within the minimalist wave of the 1960s. Kuwayama’s distinctive style featured canvases with vivid fields of acrylic paint divided by thin strips of aluminum. “When I started my practice,” he said in a recent interview, “I felt the age of painting was over, and I wanted to make things that had no trace of painterliness in them, things that existed in a different dimension.”

detail Kuwayama

Tadaaki Kuwayama, “Untitled”, detail


The Carnegie Building 1911-2015

carnegie building fire 1-27-2015 (4)In the early hours of January 27, 2015, fire broke out in the Carnegie Building on the UR’s historic Prince Street Campus. The building was being renovated at the time, and was largely empty. Structural engineers will look at the building today to see if it can be saved.

History of the Carnegie Building, from May’s History of the University of Rochester:

It was revealed on March 28, 1905, that the steel magnate, Andrew Carnegie, would donate $100,000 for an applied science building on condition that the U. of R. acquired an equal amount in endowment. William R. Willcox, non-graduate 1888, a lawyer and politician of New York City and an intimate of Carnegie, helped to obtain the offer. Notwithstanding Carnegie’s almost complete commitment to financing libraries, Willcox and Rhees, working in double harness, managed to get the promise of $100,000, which would be adequate not only to erect but also to equip a building for both mechanical and electrical engineering, it was optimistically supposed…

It was clear to Rhees that it would be an exceptionally hard task to match the Carnegie offer, not least because two wealthy Rochester friends of the college, George Eastman and Hiram W. Sibley, had just promised to finance other University projects…Trustees estimated that if alumni and friends living outside of Rochester contributed $30,000 to the “Applied Science Fund,” the rest could be secured within the Genesee community itself. Great reliance was placed upon the graduates in the New York City area, for whose information, primarily, a special brochure, “The U. of R.: its Story,” was prepared. In synopsis form, the pamphlet reviewed the history of the institution (not accurate in every detail) and it contained an attractive “Plan for Progress.” SitePlan1906A diagram of the college grounds depicted the existing academic structures and spotted sites that had already been selected for residence halls, an auditorium, an art museum, and other buildings without designation. Photographs of university buildings, homes of the fraternities among them, embellished the most elaborate production on the University, that had yet been printed.

It seems that New York graduates pledged about $17,500, much less than had been anticipated, and the campaign as a whole was lamed by the previous solicitation of funds and by a business recession in 1907. Hiram W. Sibley, son of a generous benefactor, told Rhees “quite kindly, but frankly” that his entire interest in scientific education was focused on Cornell. Perhaps John D. Rockefeller, Sr., would come to the rescue…

Instead of a direct approach, Rhees sought an appropriation from the Rockefeller-financed General Education Board, headed by Frederick T. Gates, class of 1877. This gambit paid off, for the Board promised $30,000 if the remainder of the $70,000 required for the Applied Science Fund were raised. By the end of 1908, three years after the solicitation began, the necessary sum was in hand.

The building opened in 1911, and was was renovated in 1930 for the study of geology, psychology, and sociology, and in 1944 the upper floors were converted for dormitory use by the College for Women, according to Melissa Mead, the John M. and Barbara Keil University Archivist and Rochester Collections Librarian. The University sold the building in 1955, after the merger of the Men’s and Women’s campuses.

Filling hearts with art

Late last week, Paul Harp lead students from Norman Howard School in a sequenced clay project in the Creative Workshop. As they made connections between what they learn at school, what they saw on their tour and what they are making one student said, “This clay project fills my heart!”

That fills our hearts, too.

Scoring the clay

Scoring the clay

letting the saucers dry

Letting the bowl-part dry

finished prodoct

Finished product