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Member Spotlight: Mervin & Teryl Hampton Jebaraj

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“We’re very proud to be Members. There’s a swell of pride to have a high-caliber art museum in the region.”

How frequently do you visit Crystal Bridges?

We visit every few months, especially any time a new temporary exhibit arrives. We also attend all Artinfusion parties, which are an absolute blast.

 

What made you decide to become a Member of Crystal Bridges?

We’re very proud to be Members. There’s a swell of pride to have a high-caliber art museum in the region. We’ve been impressed by Crystal Bridges’ commitment to excellence in all its operations. We’re happy to help support it.

 

What benefit of Membership do you appreciate the most and why?

We love getting complementary tickets to special exhibits for ourselves and a few guests. It’s great to introduce friends and family to Crystal Bridges. Exhibits seem more special when you get to glance across the room at a family member and drop your jaws in unison. Experiencing great art together makes it more meaningful.

 

Are there particular artworks or galleries that are special to you?
Which ones and why?

Mervin: My favorite is the marble bust of Alexander Hamilton by Giuseppe Ceracchi. Hamilton is probably the most underappreciated of the founding fathers and is an embodiment of the American dream. This bust was a prized possession of his wife, Elizabeth Schuyler Hamilton, who would proudly display it to visitors at their home for nearly a half century after his death.

Teryl: My favorite work is Wayne Thiebaud’s Supine Woman. His use of color and texture is so clever. Thiebaud’s choice of blue as the shadow color thrills me every time.

 

Why do feel art is important—for individuals, families, communities?

Exposure to art makes you think in ways you normally wouldn’t. It just expands your life in a beautiful way. Art is very reflective, and that can bring out the best traits in an individual. For communities, art seems to elevate the collective consciousness.

 

Do you have a particular story or memory you would like to share about your
experience at Crystal Bridges?

The very first day that Crystal Bridges opened for Members, 11-9-11, was Teryl’s 27th birthday. It was a perfect gift for someone who had studied art history in college. Even though we knew beforehand that the Museum was going to be wonderful, I don’t think anything could have prepared us for just how mind-blowing that first visit was going to be.

 

If you could have lunch with any artist from the Crystal Bridges collection,
who would it be, and why?

We’d love to eat barbeque with Marsden Hartley. His landscapes are so alive and captivating; some of them even remind us of familiar scenes in the Ozarks. Hall of the Mountain Kingcould be mistaken for the view from White Rock. His mastery of composition and use of color are outstanding.

 

What three songs would be on your Crystal Bridges play list?

Liebestraum No. 3 by Franz Liszt
I Follow Rivers by Lykke Li
Freedom At 21 by Jack White.

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