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Bradbury Gallery presents selections
from the Claude M. Erwin Jr. collection
Feb. 27, 2008 --
From the Claude M. Erwin Jr. Collection” will open to the public with a
reception at 5 p.m. on Thursday, March 6 at Arkansas State University’s
Bradbury Gallery, located in Fowler Center, 201 Olympic Drive,
Jonesboro. The exhibition includes several works of art originally in
the collection of Claude M. Erwin Jr. Thirty-one of these featured works
by several internationally known artists were generously donated to the
ASU Permanent Collection of Art and will be exhibited publicly for the
Erwin has also been a longtime patron of ASU’s Delta National Small
Prints Exhibition. The seven prints he helped to fund as part of that
collection and 22 additional pieces, which were selected from his
private collection, will also be included in this exhibition.
consists exclusively of works on paper by several of the best-known
artists of the twentieth century. Artists included in “Selections” are
Pablo Picasso, Joan Miro, Salvador Dali, Henri Matisse, Georges Rouault,
Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Paul Cezanne, Edouard Manet, Henri
Toulouse-Lautrec, Marc Chagall, and Raoul Dufy.
Erwin, originally from Newport, graduated from ASU with a degree in
economics. He retired at an early age as director of telecommunications
for the state of Arkansas in Little Rock and then moved to Dallas,
Texas, where he lives today.
Erwin began his habit of collecting humbly. He started at a very early
age with postcards, by asking anyone traveling to send him one. Later,
his father encouraged him to collect stamps and coins, which evolved
into collecting match covers, ultimately leading to his passion for
acquiring works of fine art.
His serious interest in collecting art began in 1963 while visiting an
antique shop in Batesville. While “just looking around for something
unique,” Erwin came upon a set of original prints from the 1790s by
Italian engraver Francesco Bartolozzi. Up to that time, he had been
buying reproductions of famous works of art and having them framed.
These original prints marked a turning point; he decided it was more
logical to concentrate on buying original works of art rather than
reproductions. His passion for collecting art had had begun.
Erwin bases his decision to purchase a work on his aesthetic
sensibility. If he likes it, he buys it, regardless of whether it is by
a well-known artist or not. His collection consists of antique and
modern works and includes numerous types of prints, paintings, and
willingness to part with these works of art, which were literally taken
from the walls of his home, makes evident his desire to share his love
of the visual arts with others.
He gave this
collection, in part, to help inspire
or expand a new generation’s
appreciation for the
“Selections: From the Claude M. Erwin Jr. Collection” runs
from Thursday, March 6-Friday, April 18. The Bradbury Gallery recognizes
spring break at ASU and will be closed from Saturday, March 15-Sunday,
March 23. Bradbury Gallery hours are 12 noon-5 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday and
2-5 p.m. Sunday. The gallery is closed on Monday. The exhibition and the
reception are free and open to the public.
For additional information, please contact Les Christensen, director of
the Bradbury Gallery, at
firstname.lastname@example.org, or call the Bradbury Gallery at (870)
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