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The William S. Paley Collection’s Long Journey

Paley blurb

Paley blurbThe William S. Paley Collection has been exhibited at 20 museums in four countries since 1992.  

Crystal Bridges is the last stop before it returns to New York.

 

William S. Paley. Photo courtesy Museum of Modern Art, New York.

William S. Paley. Photo courtesy Museum of Modern Art, New York.

Currently on display in the Museum’s temporary exhibition galleries are more than 60 works from the private collection of William S. Paley, the late founder and chairman of CBS.  Paley enjoyed exploring art that was new and different. When he began assembling his own collection in the mid-1930s, a time when most wealthy art collectors acquired the works of the Old Masters, Paley endeavored to surround himself with the works of European Modernists.

In 1937, Paley became a trustee of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)—just eight years after the institution’s founding. He went on to serve as President and later, Chairman.

Henri Matisse (French, 1869-1954) "Odalisque with a Tambourine" Nice, place Charles-Félix, winter 1925-26 Oil on canvas

Henri Matisse (French, 1869-1954)
“Odalisque with a Tambourine”
Nice, place Charles-Félix, winter 1925-26
Oil on canvas

In time, Paley’s extraordinary art holdings grew to include the work of many European masters including Pablo Picasso, André Derain, Henri Matisse, and Paul Cézanne. When he passed away in October of 1990, Paley generously willed virtually his entire modern art collection to MoMA.

The William S. Paley Collection was organized by MoMA to highlight the breadth of the charismatic entrepreneur’s extraordinary collection. Versions of the exhibition have toured the world for 22 years, visiting the United States, Canada, Australia, and Japan. During that time, the collection has been exhibited in 20 different museums.

Pablo Picasso (Spanish, 1881-1973) "Boy Leading a Horse" Paris, 1905-06 Oil on canvas

Pablo Picasso (Spanish, 1881-1973)
“Boy Leading a Horse”
Paris, 1905-06
Oil on canvas

The William S. Paley Collection: A Taste for Modernism will be on display at Crystal Bridges until July 7, 2014. Crystal Bridges will be the very last venue to feature this phenomenal collection of work before it returns to New York City. There are currently no plans for future travel of this exhibition.

On Thursday, March 20 at 1 p.m., join Associate Curator Manuela Well-Off-Man to discuss and analyze three paintings by artists who made major contributions to the development of modern art and influenced generations of European and American artists: L’Estaque by Paul Cézanne, Odalisque with a Tambourine by Henri Matisse, and Boy Leading a Horse by Pablo Picasso. Review the stylistic elements and the importance of these works within the artists’ oeuvre, and explore the influences and meanings of each of the paintings. Art Talk is free with online reservation. Your Art Talk ticket will get you into the exhibition for free!

The William S. Paley Collection: A Taste for Modernism was organized by The Museum of Modern Art, New York, and is supported by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities. At Crystal Bridges, the exhibition is sponsored by The William S. Paley Foundation, ConAgra Foods, Greenwood Gearhart Inc., KFSM-TV CBS, and Stephens Inc. 

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