Phillips Collection, Washington DC, USA

(1921-Present) Biography

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Montagne Sainte-Victoire
Paul Cezanne

218 USD


Luncheon of the Boating Party
Pierre-Auguste Renoir

346 USD

Entrance to the Public Garden in Arles
Vincent Van Gogh

242 USD

The Small Bather
Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres

237 USD

Snow at Louveciennes
Alfred Sisley
226 USD

Mystery
Odilon Redon

232 USD

Printed Sheet with Picture
Paul Klee
231 USD
 

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The Phillips Collection is an art museum founded by Duncan Phillips and Marjorie Acker Phillips in 1921 as the Phillips Memorial Gallery located in the Dupont Circle neighborhood of Washington, D.C. Phillips was the grandson of James H. Laughlin, a banker and co-founder of the Jones and Laughlin Steel Company.

Among the artists represented in the collection are Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Gustave Courbet, El Greco, Vincent van Gogh, Henri Matisse, Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, Pierre Bonnard, Paul Klee, Arthur Dove, Winslow Homer, James McNeill Whistler, Jacob Lawrence, Augustus Vincent Tack, Georgia O'Keeffe, and Mark Rothko. 

Collection

The Phillips Collection, opened in 1921, is America’s first museum of modern art. Featuring a permanent collection of nearly 3,000 works by American and European impressionist and modern artists, the Phillips is recognized for both its art and its intimate atmosphere. It is housed in founder Duncan Phillips’ 1897 Georgian Revival home and two similarly scaled additions in Washington, D.C.’s Dupont Circle neighborhood.

The museum is noted for its broad representation of both impressionist and modern paintings, with works by European masters such as Gustave Courbet, Pierre Bonnard, Georges Braque, Jacques Villon, Paul Cézanne, Honoré Daumier, Edgar Degas, Vincent van Gogh, Paul Klee, Henri Matisse, Claude Monet, and Pablo Picasso. In 1923, Phillips purchased Pierre-Auguste Renoir's impressionist painting, Luncheon of the Boating Party (1880–81), the museum’s best-known work.

From the 1920s to the 1960s, Phillips re-arranged his galleries in installations that were non-chronological and non-traditional, reflecting the relationships he saw between various artistic expressions. He presented visual connections—between past and present, between classical form and romantic expression—as dialogues on the walls of the museum. Giving equal focus to American and European artists, Phillips juxtaposed works by Winslow Homer, Thomas Eakins, Maurice Prendergast, James Abbott McNeill Whistler, and Albert Pinkham Ryder with canvases by Pierre Bonnard, Peter Ilsted and Édouard Vuillard. He exhibited watercolors by John Marin with paintings by Cézanne, and works by van Gogh with El Greco’s The Repentant St. Peter (circa 1600–05). Phillips’ vision brought together "congenial spirits among the artists," and his ideas still guide the museum today.

The Phillips Collection is also known for its groups of works by artists who Phillips particularly favored. For example, he was overwhelmed by Bonnard’s expressive use of color, acquiring 17 paintings by the artist.[9] Cubist pioneer Braque is represented by 13 paintings, including the monumental still-life The Round Table (1929). The collection has an equal number of works by Klee, such as Arab Song (1932) and Picture Album (1937), as well as seven pieces by abstract expressionist artist Mark Rothko. The Rothko Room, the first public space dedicated solely to the artist’s work, was designed by Phillips in keeping with Rothko’s expressed preference for exhibiting his large, luminous paintings in a small, intimate space, saturating the room with color and sensation.

Throughout his lifetime, Phillips acquired paintings by many artists who were not fully recognized at the time, among them John Marin, Georgia O'Keeffe, Arthur Dove, Nicolas de Staël, Milton Avery, Betty Lane and Augustus Vincent Tack. By purchasing works by such promising but unknown artists, Phillips provided them with the means to continue painting. He formed close bonds with and subsidized several artists who are prominently featured in the collection—Dove and Marin in particular—and consistently purchased works by artists and students for what he called his "encouragement collection." The museum also served as a visual haven for artists such as Richard Diebenkorn, Gene Davis, and Kenneth Noland. In a 1982 tribute to the museum, Noland acknowledged, "I’ve spent many hours of many days in this home of art. You can be with art in the Phillips as in no other place I know."

Source: Wikipedia