The Heckscher Museum Celebrates 100:

Tracing History, Inspiring the Future

On View Through January 9, 2022

Huntington – The Heckscher Museum of Art’s centennial exhibition The Heckscher Museum Celebrates 100: Tracing History, Inspiring the Future commemorates the fascinating people art, and events that have shaped the thriving Museum during its first century.

Brimming with masterworks and historical objects from the permanent collection, the exhibition takes visitors from the original collection donated in 1920 to the people, exhibitions, and acquisitions that have shaped a vibrant and significant museum. The Heckscher Museum’s collection has 2,300 objects focused on American landscape paintings, works by Long Island artists, as well American and European modernism, and photography. 

The Heckscher Museum Celebrates 100 transforms the galleries, some with “salon-style” displays from floor to ceiling, ensuring that more of The Heckscher Museum’s impressive collection can be seen. Grouped chronologically by acquisition year, the exhibition pauses at important “moments” that have propelled the Museum’s story.

Sponsors

Robin T. Hadley

The Cunniff Family

Andrea B. & Peter D. Klein

PRIVATE BANK, Bank of America

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The Heckscher Museum Celebrates 100

Must See Artworks

The Founding Collection  

Thomas Moran, Hopi Village, Arizona, 1916, oil on canvas was among the 185 works originally donated to the “Huntington Fine Arts Museum” by founders August and Anna Heckscher from their private collection. ED: also included  at that time, Thomas Moran’s Grand Canyon of the Colorado River, 1911, below. 

Thomas Moran’s Grand Canyon of the Colorado River, 1911.

The donation was comprised of European and American landscape artists and included what is now one of the oldest paintings in the Museum collection, as well as among the oldest works of art in a Long Island museum — Lucas Cranach, The Elder, Virgin, Child, St. John the Baptist and Angels, 1534.

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 George Grosz and Eclipse of the Sun

George Grosz’s Eclipse of the Sun, 1926, oil on canvas, is the Museum’s most significant acquisition and a renowned 20th-century masterpiece. Eva Gatling, the Museum’s first professional director, was instrumental in spearheading the purchase of Eclipse of the Sun in 1968. The painting also comes with a back-story. The artwork spent years rolled up in a Long Island garage before it was re-discovered. A community fundraising effort helped the Museum acquire the painting. This is especially notable as Grosz resided for a time in Huntington where he was involved with the Museum as a teacher and juror for exhibitions.

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Arthur Dove, Sea Gulls, 1938, Oil on canvas, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. William C. Dove, in Memory of Dr. Dorothy Loynes.

 Arthur Dove and Helen Torr

Arthur Dove is regarded as the first American abstract painter and a significant early 20th-century modernist. Torr, Dove’s wife, was a student of the renowned artist and teacher William Merritt Chase while at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. The couple lived aboard their yawl, Mona, in the harbors along the North Shore of Long Island throughout the 1920s. In 1938, they lived in a small cottage on the Mill Pond in Centerport. The historic Dove/Torr Cottage was acquired by the Museum in 1998. The Museum boasts a large collection of their work and archives. 

Helen Torr, Oyster Stakes, 1929, Oil on paperboard, Gift of Mrs. Mary Rehm.

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The Baker/Pisano Collection

The Baker/Pisano Collection is the largest donation of artwork received by the Museum. It contains 363 artworks from the collection of Ronald G. Pisano and D. Frederick Baker. The collection focuses on American Modernism including works by Georgia O’Keefe and Florine Stettheimer.

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The Next 100 Years

The Heckscher Museum’s acquisitions today celebrate contemporary and legacy artists, recognize photography as an important medium, and add diversity to the collection. In 2020, the acquisition of a pastel by Samuel Colman highlight the Museum’s continued commitment to preserving and interpreting 19th– and 20th-century American art. Electricit, a portfolio of Man Ray photographs, is at the center of a growing photography collection that includes artists Berenice Abbott and N. Jay Jaffee. 

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More information can be found at Heckscher.org/about/Heckscher100 

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Heckscher Museum of Art

The Heckscher Museum of Art celebrates the beginning of its second century as a source of art and inspiration. Founded by philanthropists Anna and August Heckscher in 1920, the Museum’s collection comprises more than 2,300 works from the 16th to the 21st century, including European and American painting, sculpture, works on paper, and photography. Located in scenic Heckscher Park in Huntington, the building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. To celebrate its 100th anniversary, the Museum plans an expansive centennial exhibition, The Heckscher Museum Celebrates 100, opening on June 6, 2021. Visit Heckscher.org for more information.

Timed Ticketing. Visitor safety guidelines available on Heckscher.org 

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AAQ / Resource

Bruce Nagel + Partners | Architects

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