Surprise Summer Exhibit Features New Gifts

Sierra Leone, Temne Artist, "Mami Wata, Ode-Lay Society Mask," Polychrome on Wood, gift of Fima and Jere Lifshitz

Sierra Leone, Temne Artist, “Mami Wata, Ode-Lay Society Mask,” polychrome on wood, gift of Fima and Jere Lifshitz

The Westmont Ridley-Tree Museum of Art is showing off its newest treasures this summer in “The Recent Acquisitions to the Permanent Collections,” through early August. The museum is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and closed weekends and college holidays during the summer. For more information, please visit or contact the museum at (805) 565-6162.

The impromptu exhibition highlights art added to the museum’s collection in the last few years, including works by Pablo Picasso, Joan Miró, Marcos Ramírez ERRE, Narcisse Virgile Díaz De La Peña, as well as from the Fima and Jere Lifshitz African collection.

“We have benefited from several amazing donations in the past two years, including the Lifshitz’s who have graciously lent highlights from their African collection for an exhibition, and then donated 54 works to the collection,” says Judy L. Larson, R. Anthony Askew professor of art history and museum director.

R. Anthony Askew's "Responsive Nature," 1976, color woodcut, gift of R. Anthony and Barbara Askew

R. Anthony Askew’s “Responsive Nature,” 1976, color woodcut, gift of R. Anthony and Barbara Askew

Other donations include Pablo Picasso and Joan Miró prints from the Galerie Michael in Beverly Hills. “The Galerie introduced us to Greg Scott, who donated late 19th and early 20th century French paintings by Narcisse Virgile Díaz De La Peña, Henri Joseph Harpignies and Gabrielle Achenbach,” Larson says. “Through them we also met Norman Hames, who gifted the museum two of Picasso’s canceled copper plates and corresponding prints, and Angela Yadegar, who gave us what is likely an etched portrait of Rembrandt’s father.”

Nancy and Carter Freeman gave the museum a landscape by noted French artist, Leon Victor Dupré.

Santa Barbara-area museum professionals Brian Stenfors and Robert Henning, who are helping the museum build a drawing connoisseurship collection, have donated European drawings that present issues about style, attributions and processes. “Students will be able to study these works to better understand how art scholars determine authenticity and quality,” Larson says.

Andrea Bowers’ “Monarch Butterfly (Families Do Not Have Borders)” 2016, Marker on cardboard, Westmont Acquisition

Andrea Bowers’ “Monarch Butterfly (Families Do Not Have Borders)” 2016, marker on cardboard, Westmont Acquisition

Anthony and Barbara Askew donated works by R. Anthony as well as two prints by Siu Zimmerman, a retired Westmont art professor. The Santa Barbara Library gave the museum a rare painting by Paul Perlmutter, an early modernist in Santa Barbara’s art history.

The exhibition highlights many great works donated from the estate of Fran and Keith Puccinelli, Georgia artist Howard Finster and Carpinteria modernist Jens Pedersen. Bonnie Baas donated a sculpture by Jill Vanderhoof, a former Westmont sculpture professor.

The Westmont Acquisition Fund helped the museum purchase three works by Marcos Ramírez ERRE and Andrea Bowers, which address the immigration issue, and the Dewayne and Faith Perry Print Acquisition Fund aided in the acquisition of an etching and aquatint by Judy Pfaff.

The museum will kick off the fall with “Spontaneous Response: The Innovative Ceramics of Don Reitz” from Aug. 29-Nov. 9 with an opening reception on Thursday, Aug. 29, from 4-6 p.m.