Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Virginia and the Joseph A. Lewis II Collection

Last week I noted that Lee Rosenbaum had identified material from the Joseph A. Lewis II collection in Virginia MFA. Rosenbaum has now published a list of the relevant material in Virginia. (My requests to two other AAMD member museums about their holdings from the Lewis Collection have been met with silence.)

The collecting histories are:

  • private Swiss collection before 1970 (2)
  • Ex: private Swiss collection of Simon Ohan Simonian, before 1970
  • Ex: Collection James B. McMullen, 1950 (2)
  • Ex: Collection of William Bowmore, Brisbane, Australia 1960s
  • Ex: Rupert Wace Ancient Art, London, UK; Ex: French private collection before 1950


What are the authenticated and documented collecting histories for the pieces said to have passed through the Swiss collections, conveniently before 1970? Which Swiss collections? Are they collections or the former stock of Swiss-based dealers? Likewise, what is the authenticated collecting history of the French private collection? (Remember the Middle Kingdom Alabaster Duck.)

Curators at Virginia MFA would be wise to ask for a full set of the documentation.

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