The Los Angeles Times delves into the details on the Anderson family gift to Stanford which includes the last Pollock drip painting still in private hands, one said to have attracted offers of $100 million:
121 contemporary artworks that include Jackson Pollock’s “Lucifer,” Philip Guston’s “The Coat II,” Ellsworth Kelly’s “Black Ripe” and three paintings by Richard Diebenkorn (yes, one is from his famous “Ocean Park” series). Stanford has agreed to build a new gallery building dedicated to their collection, set to open by the end of 2014.
The gift surprised some observers, who noted the family’s long association with SFMOMA. In 1992, they donated a group of 30 works by Pop artists like Claes Oldenberg, Andy Warhol and James Rosenquist to the museum. In 1996, they donated more than 650 prints to the city’s Fine Arts Museums, which first showcased the material at the Legion of Honor before moving it to the deYoung. In 2000, SFMOMA held an exhibition “Celebrating Modern Art: The Anderson Collection,” which could be seen as a bid for the collectors’ remaining masterpieces.
Anderson says there are good reasons they skipped over SFMOMA this time. “We’ve already given 30 works to SFMOMA and now, in addition, SFMOMA has received for all practical purposes the [Don and Doris] Fisher collection, so their cup runneth over,” he says. “We like the idea of collection sharing.”
Getting “a dedicated building exclusively for the Anderson collection” did not hurt, he admits: “That’s always been a major objective of ours.”
Harry ‘Hunk’ Anderson on why Stanford beat out San Francisco museums for the family’s big donation (Los Angeles Times)