Letter: Museum sales foes down to 'Last Arrow'
It is not without irony that apparently the iconic Thomas Moran masterpiece "The Last Arrow" is one of the final two as yet unsold treasures the Berkshire Museum's board targeted for disposal.
For well over 60 years that painting has transfixed me and countless other viewers. I hope you have seen it; the historic brave, his last arrow aimed at soldiers approaching, his family, including his infant and wife, vulnerable behind him. New America is depicted as a Hudson River school paradise serves as the awesome backdrop.
The viewer is drawn into an eternal dilemma — what to do in crisis.
The allegory is so multifaceted and relates to so many eternal decisions, so please see it if you have not already. It had held the highest place of honor in the museum, standing directly before you as you entered the majestic Crane room, having ascended the ethereal staircase, where the birth of the new Berkshire Eagle was presented to all of us. That staircase is also targeted for destruction. Just beside it is the fireplace, which I was drawn toward as a 9-year-old and again as a 70-year-old.
When Carrie Saldo in The Eagle audaciously first began to report on the museum's plan to divest the public works, the plan smoke-screened with deception, she began to expose this nightmare to the public. I responded to her first Eagle articles by emailing her my dread and desperation. I called her the public's "Last Arrow."
I can only hope the museum reaches its $55 million goal and we the people can keep our treasure here in Pittsfield.
I ask for two favors. Please view the painting yourself and tell readers what you think, and to The Eagle, please publish a half-page, detailed reproduction in The Eagle so if all hope is lost we the public can have a keepsake, a record, of this mighty image whose powerful questions about conflicts, both internal and external, will continue to resonate.
Barry Lobovits, M.D.,
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