Thursday, August 05, 2010

Herb and Dorothy

"Herb and Dorothy" is a great documentary about two of America's most influential collectors of contemporary art. The amazing thing about these two passionate and unassuming people is that they have collected art with a tenacity and vigour beyond both the constraints of their income and of their tiny, one bedroom apartment.

Now in their 80's, Herb and Dorothy Vogler began collecting art from New York's artists working in Minimalism in the 1960's. Herb was a postal worker and Dorothy was a librarian and their collection was constrained by their modest income. They would visit artists studio's and attend openings and often pay the works off over a series of payments. Their zeal for collecting continued and during the 70's and 80's they moved in into conceptual art. Eventually their collection numbered in the thousand's represented the finished works and working sketches of some of the 20th century's most important artists including Sol LeWitt, Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Richard Tuttle, Chuck Close, Robert Mangold, Sylvia Plimack Mangold, Lynda Benglis, Pat Steir, Robert Barry, Lucio Pozzi, and Lawrence Weiner.
Sol Le Witt
Herb and Dorothy became a respected part of the national arts scene in America and many galleries vied for the rights to buy part of their collection which was still impossibly housed in their one- bedroom apartment. Herb and Dorothy resisted all offers and in 1992 gave most of this significant and priceless collection to the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC. They believe that these works are items of beauty and should be enjoyed by all people for free. The Vogel's speak of themselves as custodians of the art and the incredible loyalty they have shown to artists and generosity in sharing their passion continues as they are still filling up their apartment with new work bought out of the small stipend given to them by the National Gallery in recognition of their services to the arts.

Borrow this wonderful documentary by director Megumi Sasaki as soon as you can!

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