Magical Evening for Collectors’ Circle

Collectors Circle

“I never saw anything as beautiful as as Balch Auditorium transformed into a magical place. It was great fun for a great cause.”

So said a member of the newly formed Collectors’ Circle, which began a new tradition at Scripps with its first afternoon and evening series of events on February 11. The goal was to raise funds for the acquisition of art to enhance the Scripps College Collections— and, most important, to complement the College’s art curriculum.

The event was a success on many levels: a luminous turnout of alumnae, parents, and friends enjoyed a private tour, led by gallery director Mary Davis MacNaughton ’70, of the Ruth Chandler Williamson Gallery’s exhibition of “Clay’s Tectonic Shift: John Mason, Ken Price, and Peter Voulkos, 1956-68”; a traditional Scripps tea was served in the Holbein Room of Denison Library; Williamson Gallery Wilson interns presented art to be considered for acquisition. The evening culminated in a spectacular dinner in Balch Auditorium.

The event raised more than $50,000, which was used to acquire important art. Collectors’ Circle members voted during the evening on which art pieces would be added to the Scripps College Collections. Much of the cost of the event was underwritten by Peggy Phelps, member of the Williamson Gallery Advisory Committee, and MaryLou Boone, former trustee.

Because of the generosity of members, a total of 18 art pieces now enrich the current collections; they include paintings by Millard Sheets and Susan Hertel ’52, etchings by Thomas Moran and James Whistler, photographs by Berenice Abbott and Herman Leonard, and ceramics by Harrison McIntosh, along with the work of other artists. A $5,000 gift was earmarked for the ongoing restoration and conservation of the College’s famed Shakespeare bas-reliefs by John Gregory in Sycamore Court.

Plans are underway for next year’s grand event, tentatively scheduled for March, according to Eric T. Haskell, professor of French and humanities, and director of the Clark Humanities Museum.


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