Scripps Collectors’ Circle — A New Tradition

Since its founding in 1936, Scripps College has collected art works for teaching purposes in and outside of the classroom. All of the College’s art works have been gifts to Scripps from generous donors who understand the intrinsic value of using original art to deeply enrich the education of our students. However, the College has never had an art acquisition fund, and no tuition monies have ever been spent on art. Unfortunately, this has prevented us from “filling in the blanks” of our collections so that they can better serve their function as a complement to our curriculum.

This fall, we  launched the Scripps Collectors’ Circle (SCC), which is well on its way to becoming a new and lasting tradition at the College. The SCC  hosted its first annual event on Saturday, February 11, 2012. The gathering began with a private tour by Professor Mary MacNaughton ’70, director of the Williamson Gallery, of Clay’s Tectonic Shift: John Mason, Ken Price, Peter Voulkos, 1956-1968—Scripps’ contribution to the Getty’s Pacific Standard Time program of exhibitions. High tea in the Holbein Room of the Denison Library was  followed by presentations on the art works to be considered for inclusion in the collection. After a drinks party complete with live renditions from the American Songbook,  guests enjoyed an elegant dinner party in a transformed Balch Hall, which was wreathed in garlands and bathed in the light of hundreds of candles. At the commencement of each new course, members of the Circle voted for the acquisition of art for the Scripps Collections until the membership fees were fully allocated. At the end of the voting, eighteen works had been added to the Scripps Collection. Former trustee and long-standing friend of the College, MaryLou Boone,  served as honorary chair of this much-anticipated event.

Eighteen works were acquired for the collection and funds were voted in toward the restoration of the Shakespeare bas-reliefs in the Sycamore Courtyard. The works acquired were:

Arita Kilns  2 Sake Bottles, early 19th c. (ceramic)

Berenice Abbott  Murray Hill Hotel: Spiral, New York, 1935 (photograph)

Julia Blackmon  Concert, 2010 (photograph)

Joan Irving Brandt  Looking down Goldenrod Street 1964 (mixed media)

Angela de Mott  Nebulae Vessel, 2011 (ceramic)

Susan Hertel  Cat on Table, c. 1955 (oil painting)

Herman Leonard  Dexter Gordon, Royal Roost, NYC, 1948 (photograph)

Herman Leonard  Ella Fitzgerald with Duke Ellington and Benny Goodman, 1948 (photograph)

Herman Leonard   Billy Holiday (with Smoke), New York City, 1949 (photograph)

Harrison McIntosh  Bowl, 1989 (ceramic)

Harrison McIntosh  Vase, 1985 (ceramic)

Thomas Moran  The Rapids Above Niagra, 1886 (etching)

Thomas Moran  The Resounding Sea, 1886 (etching)

Mary Nimmo Moran  East Hampton ca. 1888 (etching)

Steven Portigal  Five-Part Harmony, 2005 (ceramic)

Millard Sheets  Skiffs at the Dock, 1927 (watercolor)

Millard Sheets   Trees (near gypsy camp), c. 1926 (watercolor)

James M. Whistler  Hurlingham, 1879 (etching and drypoint)

If you are interested in learning more about membership in  the Circle, please contact Colleen Salomon at [email protected] or call 909-607-8090.