LEGERS, MONDRIANS FOR THE DMFA

When voters passed a bond election in 1978 to build the new Dallas Museum of Fine Arts, Dallas collectors promised them important additions to the museum’s permanent collection. They have been true to their word.

Last January, the Meadows Foundation gave 38 impressionist and modern paintings and works from the private collection of Mr. and Mrs. Algur H. Meadows. DMFA Director Harry Parker called it the most valuable gift ever received by the museum.

Now the museum’s collection of 20th-century art has been enhanced to world-class status by a gift of eight paintings from the James H. and Lillian Clark Foundation, says Steven Nash, assistant director and chief curator for the DMFA.

The gift consists of five works by Dutch geometric abstractionist Piet Mondrian and three canvases by French cubist Fernand Léger.

Mondrian is best known for his abstract canvases, but three of the Clarks’ paintings are from his earlier impressionistic period, and each is distinguished by markedly different styles and subject matters. The five paintings represent a remarkable survey of a painter’s development.

The Légers are also significant representative works spanning the most important 20 years of Léger’s work. They can be seen in the Léger exhibition organized by the Albright-Knox Art Gallery of Buffalo, New York, on display at the DMFA in Fair Park until June 27.

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