Joan and Marc Sherman: new CODART Maecenases
Recently, the New York collectors couple Joan and Marc Sherman decided to support CODART through the American Friends of CODART Fund. The Friends of CODART Foundation and the American Friends of CODART Fund support the activities of CODART and facilitate the international cooperation and exchange between curators of Dutch and Flemish art. This joining of forces stimulates renewed interest in Dutch and Flemish art worldwide and provides curators with a precious network of colleagues to whom they can turn for help with their research, exhibitions and publications. Regularly, members of CODART suggest their contacts to become active in one of CODART’s Friends organizations. CODART appreciates it greatly that Amy Walsh, our member at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and a personal friend of the Shermans, assisted in establishing the first contact with them.
Collection of Dutch still lifes
Joan Sherman is an artist herself, Marc works as a trader in equities and commodities. They are both fascinated with Dutch and Flemish art, and recently started to collect Dutch still lifes. “There are not so many examples of Dutch still lifes in New York public collections,” Joan says. “We just started to bring together a collection of Dutch still lifes and what I am seeing in these paintings is a tremendous relation between the Golden Age and our times. The first time I saw a 17th century Dutch painting that combined flowers and a skull, I was haunted by the image.”
Ambrosius Bosschaert (1573-1621), Vase with flowers, ca. 1618
Mauritshuis The Hague
Marc and Joan Sherman
Jeff Koons and Clara Peeters
“As I began to see the same imagery in art by contemporary artists such as Damien Hirst and Takashi Murakami, the connections between the Dutch Golden Age, particularly still life painting, became more and more striking”, Joan continues. “Tulipomania represented a boom-bust cycle in much the same way as the dot-com bust or the mortgage crisis. The theme of consumerism is as central to an Andy Warhol painting of soup cans or a Jeff Koons sculpture of a balloon dog as it is to a painting of cheese and bread by Clara Peeters. The fragility of existence and the impermanence of human endeavor is expressed as poignantly by today's performance artists, whose work often refuses to result in a lasting object, as it is in the desiccated rose petals that tumble from a flower arrangement in a Van der Ast still life, or the bugs that threaten its delicate leaves."
“What I really like about CODART is the educational experience and the intellectual contacts,” Joan Sherman says. “Thanks to CODART I learn about paintings, collections, and exhibitions, and I know what’s up. I know that CODART’s Friends and Maecenases cannot join the study trips for curators, but I am looking forward to be included in other limited meetings that CODART organizes. I am happy to be a part of a larger network and to be attached to others who are interested in the Old Masters purely intellectually.”
CODART thanks the Shermans for their generous financial contribution and for becoming a Maecenas of CODART!
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