Letter: Consider Crane family along with Rockwell's
I find it very odd that all of those who object to what the Berkshire Museum Board of Trustees wishes to do going forward raised such a firestorm of protest. They are most concerned with the feelings of the Rockwell family. None of them seem care about the concerns of the Crane family
My understanding is that Zenas Crane wanted to start a museum with a three-pronged approach, focusing on art, natural history, and science, which he did. The present board seems to be bending its efforts to bring that concept into the 21st century. The Crane family has a representative on the board. I have to believe that this member represents the wishes of the family.
If the Rockwell family and the Rockwell Museum are so concerned that two pieces might go out of the country, why doesn't a consortium of their donor base band together to bid for those paintings, and if successful, give them to the Rockwell museum?
The donor base in Berkshire County has eroded. General Electric is no more. Sprague Electric is now the home of Mass MoCA. Other companies no longer with us include Byron Weston, Clark Aiken, Sabic, Kimberly Clarke/Schweitzer Mauduit. Just drive down along the Housatonic River and see all the empty old mills.
Meanwhile, there are many artistic entities that are pursuing the available donor dollars.In North County there is the Clark Art Institute, the Williamstown Theatre Festival, Mass MoCA, In the Central Berkshire area there is the Barrington Stage Company, Berkshire Theatre Group/Colonial, Shakespeare and Company, The Mount, Ventford Hall, Hancock Shaker Village, the Mahaiwe, Tanglewood, and Jacob's Pillow. There are other smaller groups looking for support as well.
I noticed a sad irony just below the article in The Berkshire Eagle in which the. Rockwells requested the court to halt the auction. A well known bagel shop, Bagels Too, is closing. Susan Gordon, the proprietor, was unable to save her shop. This is indicative of the times in Berkshire County.
Barbara Crochiere Roberts,
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