GAMBIER, Ohio — Major gift of artwork donated by Graham and Ann Gund to the Graham Gund Gallery at Kenyon College.
The four-year-old Graham Gund Gallery at Kenyon College is thrilled to announce a recent gift of 60 works of important contemporary art. Mr. and Mrs. Graham and Ann Gund have generously donated the work to seed a recently launched Gund Gallery Collection. Graham Gund, a noted architect, collector and philanthropist, is a 1963 graduate of Kenyon.
About his donation, Graham Gund commented, “I’m excited about the potential with this gift to enrich the Kenyon community and bring visual art into the mainstream of the liberal arts experience. This will further enhance the great work that the director, Natalie Marsh, and her team have accomplished in less than four years.”
The substantial donation includes work by Bernd & Hilla Becher, Ingrid Calame, Dale Chihuly, Christo and Jeanne-Claude, Antony Gormley, Philip Guston, Roy Lichtenstein, Paul Manship, Laura McPhee, Henry Moore, Kenneth Noland, Claes Oldenberg, Pablo Picasso, Robert Rauschenberg, James Rosenquist, Joel Sternfeld, and other eminent artists of the 20th and 21st centuries. Highlights include a 2004 life-size bronze by Kiki Smith entitled “Her”, a substantial Frank Stella wall relief from 1978 and a Thomas Struth photograph of “Milan Cathedral (Façade)” from 1998.
Speaking on the importance of the gift, Gund Gallery Director Natalie Marsh shared, “We are truly honored to be granted the opportunity to steward these important works as they enter a new life in service to the ambitious educational mission of the Gund Gallery and Kenyon College.” Marsh noted the valuable contribution the works make to the Gallery’s ability to contribute to a wider array of the college’s liberal arts curricula and the community through exhibitions and collections-dependent programs. Since its dedication in the fall of 2011, it has been the Gund Gallery’s mission to celebrate art as a critical centerpiece of Kenyon’s liberal arts mission and the community by championing the best art and artists of the 20th and 21st centuries via an active exhibition schedule, expanding permanent collection, and formal and informal learning experiences.
Remarking on the donation, Gund Gallery board chair David Horvitz ’73 enthusiastically noted, “This extraordinarily generous gift advances the mission of the Gund Gallery by providing some of the best art from the 20th and 21st century with which teachers in the arts and throughout the college can teach. This new opportunity for Kenyon faculty and students—learning from original objects rather than photographs of original objects or pictures in books or periodicals—allows our community to experience the power of great art in a different and much more intense way. Thank you, Graham Gund.”
A selection of the donated works will be featured in a small spring 2015 student-curated exhibition organized by a team of Gund Associates, undergraduate interns who come from a range of disciplinary majors at Kenyon. The exhibition opens on April 23rd.
The recent donation follows on the heels of a major 2013 gift of two video works by contemporary Icelandic multi-media artist Ragnar Kjartansson given by Graham and Ann Gund to the Gund Gallery at Kenyon, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston through a unique co-ownership arrangement. The jointly-owned Kjartansson work entitled “The Visitors” is on view through May 24th at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Cleveland. The Gund Gallery was proud to be the first U.S. museum to screen “The Visitors,” considered by many to be one of the artist’s most moving works, from July 2013-January 2014.
“The Gund Gallery is an absolute gem, and this extensive gift of noteworthy contemporary art profoundly enhances both it and the amazing educational resources that Kenyon College offers,” noted Steve Miller, a Kenyon parent and member of the Parents Advisory Council. “We’re fortunate to visit Kenyon often, each time with eager anticipation to see what’s up at the Gund. And, as a former board member of the Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland, I’m also excited that – with the Gund Gallery’s growing collection, its dedication to presenting new contemporary art from around the world, and its ongoing commitment to student work – our region’s cultural offerings are expanding so dramatically.”