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Where are the 40 works of art consigned to Sotheby’s in 2018?

The Berkshire Museum signed a contract with Sotheby’s removing the most valuable paintings and sculpture without the Pittsfield community’s knowledge or participation in the decision-making process. Leadership ignored repeated requests for a public forum, and there was no time or opportunity to organize a farewell exhibition or keepsake catalogue. Added to the loss are lingering questions as to where the paintings are now located. Sotheby’s is not obliged to release purchaser information, and it is not known whether 15 of these cherished works of art are held in public or private collections.

Norman Rockwell’s Shuffleton’s Barbershop is the most commercially valuable of the two Rockwell’s gifted to the Museum by the artist for the public to enjoy in perpetuity. It was the crown jewel of the collection and a source of pride, and the most significant loss to the community.

Albert Bierstadt, Connecticut River Valley, Claremont, New Hampshire 1868, oil on canvas

Connecticut River Valley,
Claremont, New Hampshire

Albert Bierstadt
1868, Oil on canvas
William Adolphe Bouguereau, La bourrique (The Pony-back Ride) 1884, oil on canvas

La Bourrique (the Pony-back Ride)

William Bouguereau
1884, Oil on canvas

Unknown
Price: $1,755,000

Sotheby’s Link

Charles Francois Daubigny, Paysans allant aux champs le matin

Paysans allant aux champs (Le matin)

Charles Francois Daubigny
Oil on canvas

Unknown
Price: $68,750

Sotheby’s Link

Pieter De Hooch, The Music Party

The Music Party

Pieter De Hooch
Oil on canvas
Daniel Ridgway Knight, Girl with Dog, 1866

Girl with Dog

Daniel Ridgway Knight
1866, Oil on canvas
Alberto Pasini, Market Day in Constantinople, 1877, Oil on canvas

Market Day in Constantinople

Alberto Pasini
1877, Oil on canvas
Sir Joshua Reynolds, Portrait of Mr. W. Cave, Oil on canvas

Portrait of Mr. W. Cave

Sir Joshua Reynolds
Oil on canvas
Giulio Tadolini, Judith, 1881, Marble

Judith

Giulio Tadolini
1881, Marble
Edwin Lord Weeks, Indian Prince, Palace of Agra, Oil on canvas

Indian Prince, Palace of Agra

Edwin Lord Weeks
Oil on canvas
A Ten-Panel Coromandel Lacquer 'Daoist Immortals' Screen, Qing Dynasty, Kangxi Period, dated by inscription 1689

A Ten-Panel Coromandel Lacquer ‘Daoist Immortals’ Screen

Qing Dynasty, Kangxi Period,
dated by inscription 1689

Unknown
Price: $75,000

Sotheby’s Link

Albert Bierstadt, Giant Redwood Trees of California Circa 1874, oil on canvas

Giant Redwood Trees of California

Albert Bierstadt
1874, Oil on canvas
Alexander Calder, Dancing Torpedo Shape, 1932

Dancing Torpedo Shape

Alexander Calder
1932, wood, wire & aluminum
*First museum to give Calder an exhibition and first museum to purchase his work.

Public (while not accessible to the public, foundation ownership indicates it remains in the public domain. )

Price: Sold through private transaction.

Link: Calder statement from 1933 Berkshire Museum Exhibition

View Motorized Sculpture

Thomas Wilmer Dewing, The White Dress

Two Ladies in a Drawing Room
The White Dress

Thomas Wilmer Dewing
1921
Private Transaction
Price: Estimate $600-800K
George Inness, Mountain Landscape – The Painter at Work (Leeds in the Catskills, with the Artist Sketching), Circa 1867-1869

Mountain Landscape – The Painter at Work (Leeds in the Catskills, with the artist sketching)

George Inness
Circa 1867—1869,
Oil on canvas
John LaFarge, Magnolia, 1863, Oil on panel

Magnolia

John LaFarge
1863, Oil on panel

Private Transaction
Price: $262,500

Sotheby’s Link

Charles Wilson Peale, Portrait of General David Forman, Circa 1784, Oil on canvas

Portrait of General David Forman

Charles Wilson Peale
Circa 1784, Oil on canvas
Private transaction
Estimate: $200-300K
Norman Rockwell, Blacksmith’s Boy – Heel and Toe (Shaftsbury Blacksmith Shop), 1940

Blacksmith’s Boy – Heel & Toe
(Shaftsbury Blacksmith Shop)

Norman Rockwell
1940, Oil on canvas
Donated by the artist in 1966

Unknown
Price: $8,131,000
(gifted to the Berkshire Museum from the artist, 1966)

Sotheby’s Link

Girolamo Troppa, Apollo Flaying Marsyas, Oil on canvas

Apollo Flaying Marsyas

Girolamo Troppa
Oil on canvas
Benjamin West, Daniel Interpreting to Belshazzar the Handwriting on the Wall, Oil on canvas

Daniel Interpreting to Belshazzar
the Handwriting on the Wall

Benjamin West
1775, Oil on canvas
Private Transaction (St. Louis Art Museum)
Estimate: $200 – 300K
Archaic Bronze Ritual Food Vessel, Gui

Ritual Food Vessel, Gui

Early Western Zhou Period, Bronze
Ralph Albert Blakelock, Rocky Mountains

Rocky Mountains

Ralph Albert Blakelock
1874, Oil on canvas
Alexander Calder, Double Arc and Sphere, 1932

Double Arc & Sphere

Alexander Calder
1932, Painted wood, wire
& sheet metal
*First museum to give Calder an exhibition and first museum to purchase his work.

Public (while not accessible to the public, foundation ownership indicates it remains in the public domain.)

Price: $1,215,000

Sotheby’s Link

View Motorized Sculpture

Raoul Dufy, La Féte, 1935

La Féte

Raoul Dufy
Circa 1935,
Watercolor on paper
Adriaen Isenbrant, The Temptation, Oil on panel

The Temptation of Adam and Eve

Adriaen Isenbrant
Oil on panel

Private Transaction
Price: $325,000

Sotheby’s Link

Henry Moore, Three Seated Figures, 1942, Pastel, ink and pen on paper

Three Seated Figures

Henry Moore
1942, Pastel, ink pen on paper

Unknown
Price: $300,000

Sotheby’s Link

Rembrandt Peale, George Washington, Oil on canvas

George Washington

Rembrandt Peale
1784, Oil on canvas

Unknown
Price: $225,000

Sotheby’s Link

Norman Rockwell, Shuffleton's Barbershop, 1950

Shuffleton’s Barbershop

Norman Rockwell
1950, Oil on canvas
Donated by the artist in 1959
Believed to be his greatest work

Private transaction with
the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art
Purported Sale Price: $30 million
(Loaned to the Norman Rockwell Museum
for 18 months)

Sotheby’s Link

Jan Victors, Benjamin and His Brethren

Benjamin and his Brethren

Jan Victors
Oil on canvas
A folding 'Tale of Genji' screen, Japan, 16th century

A folding ‘Tale of Genji’ screen

Japan, 16th century
A Large Blue and White 'Dragon Vase, Qing Dynasty, Early 19th Century, Jiaqing-Daoguang Period

Chinese porcelain vase.
Blue on white.
Decorated with draqon motifs

Qing Dynasty, Early 19th Century,
Jiaqing-Daoguang Period

Unknown
Price: $137,500

Sotheby’s Link

William Adolphe Bouguereau, L'Agneau nouveau-né (The Newborn Lamb) 1873, oil on canvas

L’Agneau Nouveau-Né
(the newborn lamb)

William Bouguereau
1873, Oil on canvas

Unknown
Price: $975,000

Sotheby’s Link

Frederic Edwin Church, Valley of the Santa Ysabel, 1875

Valley of the Santa Ysabel

Frederic Church
1875, Oil on canvas

Public
Sold to PAFA; PAFA will offer free admission to Berkshire County Residents in perpetuity.

Price: $5 – 7M  (sale price unknown)

Sotheby’s Link

View Artwork at PAFA

George Henry Durrie, Hunter in Winter Wood, 1860

Hunter in Winter Wood

George Henry Durrie
1860, Oil on canvas

Private Transaction
Price: $312,500

Sotheby’s Link

. ADRIAEN ISENBRANT AND CIRCLE OF JOACHIM PATINIR

Flight into Egypt

Adriaen Isenbrant
Oil on panel

Private Transaction
Price: $759,000

Sotheby’s Link

Thomas Moran, The Last Arrow, 1867, Oil on canvas

The Last Arrow

Thomas Moran
1867, Oil on canvas

Unknown
Price: $1,335,000
(withdrawn from the November 2017 American Art auction due to MA temporary injunction)

Sotheby’s Link

Francis Picabia, Force Comique, Watercolor on paper

Force Comique

Francis Picabia
1914, Watercolor on paper

Unknown
Price: $1,119,000

Sotheby’s Link

Augustus Saint-Gaudens, Diana of the Tower, 1899, Bronze

Diana of the Tower

Augustus Saint-Gaudens
1899, Bronze
Franklin Simmons, Penelope, 1884, Marble

Penelope

Franklin Simmons
1884, Marble
Edouard Vuillard, Deux femmes dans un interieur, Watercolor on paper

Deux femmes dans un interieur

Edouard Vuillard
Watercolor on paper
A Large Bronze Figure of Guanyin, China or Japan, 19th Century

A Large Bronze Figure
of Guanyin

China or Japan
19th Century

ABOUT

SAVE THE ART (STA)
A grassroots citizens group established in 2017 with the intent of stopping the sale of the Berkshire Museum’s treasured art collection in order to find an alternate solution to its continued financial shortfall.

MISSION

The mission of Save the Art is to advocate for and protect the Public Trust — the art and objects belonging to all of us that document humankind’s creative and social history through time.

PRESS

We thank the Berkshire Eagle for their extensive investigative coverage, the journalists, op-ed writers and our community for their hundreds of letters of concern. In particular, STA applauds Larry Parnass, Investigations Editor, Berkshire Eagle, for his excellent coverage of the Berkshire Museum and achievement of the 2018 Outstanding Journalism award from the New England Newspaper and Press Association.