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We mourn the passing of Rena Rosequist, former owner of the Mission Gallery in Taos. Please read the Taos News article about her here.
Big Taos bash at Couse-Sharp Historic Site: Gala, auctions, book launches, lecture and exhibit of Sharp’s Montana works
TAOS, NM — The Couse Foundation will hold a whirlwind weekend celebrating art and art scholarship this summer, centered on its Sixth Biennial Gala and Art Auction June 14-16. The Foundation, which owns and operates the incomparable Couse-Sharp Historic Site, has put together what promises to be an engaging Taos weekend.
“The Gala and associated events kick off an ambitious capital campaign to fund our research center project and ensure the historic site’s future,” said Davison Packard Koenig, the Foundation’s executive director and curator. “With The Lunder Research Center, we aim to become the center of scholarship for the Taos Society of Artists.”
The festivities begin with a multifaceted event the evening before the Gala and continue through Sunday:
• Friday, June 14, 5-7 p.m. - Wine and hors d’oeuvres reception with “hardhat tours” of the under-construction museum facility that includes The Lunder Research Center (138 Kit Carson Road, Taos). Book signing events with scholars of the TSA. Opening of temporary exhibition Joseph Henry Sharp’s Montana in the 1915 Sharp Studio. Friday events open to gala attendees and invited guests only; RSVP required.
• Saturday, June 15, 10 a.m. - “So me for the North and snow!”: Joseph Henry Sharp’s Montana. Lecture by noted scholar Dr. Marie Watkins at the Harwood Museum of Art, 238 Ledoux Street, Taos (HarwoodMuseum.org) Open to the public; $10 general admission, $8 Harwood members. Seating is limited; advance tickets suggested. Purchase tickets from the museum, 575-758-9826.
• Saturday, June 15, 5 p.m. – Gala dinner and art auction at El Monte Sagrado Resort (ElMonteSagrado.com). The event is currently sold out; call 575-751-0369 for information about proxy bidding arrangements. Auction previews at Couse-Sharp.org/current-gala.
• Sunday, June 16, 11 a.m. - Open house at the historic site, 146 Kit Carson Road, with launch of Eanger Irving Couse: The Life and Times of an American Artist, 1866-1936, released by the University of Oklahoma Press this spring. This definitive biography of E. I. Couse was written by art historian Virginia Couse Leavitt, his granddaughter. Leavitt will be on hand to sign her masterwork, and copies will be for sale. Besides Couse’s home and studio, visitors can also tour the temporary exhibition Taos Pueblo Portraiture: The Photographic Studies of E. I. Couse in the site’s 1835 Luna Chapel and the permanent rotating exhibition J. H. Sharp: The Life and Work of an American Legend, refreshed this season with artwork, ephemera and objects from his personal collection. Open to the public, free admission.
Artwork chronicling the life and work of J. H. Sharp will be on display in the studio he used for almost 40 years, now fully restored. A significant focus will be from the artist’s time living in Montana and dovetail with Dr. Watkins’ Saturday lecture. The artworks are on loan from private collectors and museums; some have never been publicly exhibited, others not for many years.
Art for the Saturday live and silent auctions is being carefully curated and includes both historic and contemporary works, by artists including Bill Acheff, Jozef Bakos, Donald Barton, Carla Bogdanoff, Derek No-Sun Brown, Marie Romero Cash, Arturo Chavez, Kang Cho, Angie Coleman, Nicholas Coleman, Edward S. Curtis, Glenn Dean, Phil Epp, Logan Maxwell Hagege, Sheldon Harvey, E. Martin Hennings, Brett Allen Johnson, Jerry Jordan, Gene Kloss, Randall LaGro, Jeremy Landau, Geoffrey Lasko, Barbara Latham, Dustin Leavitt, Jivan Lee, Ira Lujan and Kacey Jones, Jody Naranjo, Dean Porter, Cara Romero, Maria Samora, Ed Smida, Barbara Sparks, Earl Stroh and C. S. Talley. The silent auction also will have books, historic Pueblo pottery and a portrait gift certificate.
Alissa Ford, director of California and Western art for Heritage Auctions, returns as auctioneer.
A special feature this year is an array of cowboy-hat-style hardhats decorated on commission by Derek No-Sun Brown, John Farnsworth, Susan Folwell, Chloe Gaillard, Jerry Jordan and Ed Sandoval. These will be auctioned exclusively at the Friday evening reception.
“We have a great auction lineup and enthusiastic response from art lovers interested in attending our whole weekend,” said Richard Rinehart, Foundation president. “We are excited about introducing everyone to our $8 million fundraising campaign, which will enable us to build out and operate the research center, fund programming including artists- and scholars-in-residence, ensure the long-term success of the historic complex through an endowment, and tell a fascinating story about art and culture into the future.”
Official sponsors of The Couse Foundation Sixth Biennial Gala & Art Auction are Heritage Hotels, Centinel Bank, Heritage Auctions, Parsons Fine Art, Western Art Collector, Rich and Carol Rinehart, Addison Rowe Fine Art, Holly and Tom Azzari, Brian Lebel’s Old West Events, Leslie Hindman Auctioneers, McNab Ridge Wine Company, Tres Estrellas Gallery, Owings Gallery and Zaplin Lampert Gallery.
Archive and research center achieves rapid progress
TAOS, NM—The Lunder Foundation of Portland, Maine, is providing a grant of $600,000 in support of the Taos Society of Artists archive and research center that will be located in the Mission Gallery building being acquired by The Couse Foundation. The facility will be known as The Lunder Research Center and we foresee opening in mid-2021.
Several other generous friends of the Foundation have delivered large gifts in support of the project, totaling more than $450,000. This has enabled the purchase of the adjacent Mission Gallery building in September and the initiation of the conversion to a museum facility housing archives, research center, exhibition space, and offices.
Another significant milestone has been reached with the help of patrons who have pledged to fund the first year of salary and benefits for a professional archivist to join the staff, enabling us to proceed with processing the significant archival materials and collections we currently have. The position will also provide crucial input to the design of the interior and equipment to conform to best practices.
The Lunder Research Center will be the repository for documents and art created, and artifacts collected, by the twelve members of the Taos Society of Artists and scholarly materials relating to the group. The facility will welcome scholars, students, and artists who wish to conduct research relating to the Taos Society of Artists and its individual members. The Center will be a major enhancement to the campus at the Couse-Sharp Historic Site and will further elevate the reputation of Taos as an artistic community of international importance.
Archive and Research Center Receives Major Grant
TAOS, NM—The Couse Foundation is pleased and honored to report that The Lunder Foundation of Portland, Maine, is providing a grant of $600,000 in support of the Taos Society of Artists archive and research center that will be located in the Mission Gallery building being acquired by The Couse Foundation later this year.
After the building is rehabilitated and repurposed it will be known as The Lunder Research Center. Additionally, at the request of The Lunder Foundation and with the unanimous support of The Couse Foundation’s board of directors, the main gallery and reception room in The Lunder Research Center will be named in honor of Dean A. Porter. Dr. Porter is the former Director of the Snite Museum of Art at the University of Notre Dame and is a nationally known scholar and author who has devoted much of his career to scholarship relating to the Taos Society of Artists. Dr. Porter serves as an Advisory Director for The Couse Foundation.
The Lunder Foundation is a highly respected philanthropic organization that has provided major support to Colby College in Waterville, Maine, including the Colby College Museum of Art and The Lunder Institute of American Art, among numerous other beneficiaries.
“This grant from The Lunder Foundation is by far the largest single gift in the history of The Couse Foundation. It is a significant endorsement of our vision and will ensure the realization of our goal to create a research center of national importance at the Couse-Sharp Historic Site,” said Carl Jones, President of The Couse Foundation.
Peter and Paula Lunder, principals of The Lunder Foundation, have stated, “We are very pleased to be able to support this project, which we feel is an important addition to the resources available for the study and appreciation of American art.”
The Lunder Research Center will be the repository for documents and art created, and artifacts collected, by the twelve members of the Taos Society of Artists and scholarly materials relating to the group. These materials include original documents and personal correspondence, photographic prints and negatives, sketchbooks, original works of art, and Native American ethnographic items. The facility will also be home to a research center and library that will welcome scholars, students and authors who wish to conduct research relating to the Taos Society of Artists and its individual members.
The Lunder Research Center will be a major enhancement to the campus at the Couse-Sharp Historic Site and will further elevate the reputation of Taos as an artistic community of international importance.
Porter donates extensive papers to Foundation’s TSA archive
Dean Porter, an Advisory Director of The Couse Foundation and Director Emeritus of the Snite Museum of Art at the University of Notre Dame, has donated his personal Taos Society of Artists archive and research papers to the Foundation.
“The gift of these well-indexed documents, in addition to numerous scholarly books included with the gift, will be a treasure trove for scholars into the future and will be an important component of the Taos Society of Artists archive being established at the Couse-Sharp Historic Site,” said Carl Jones, President of The Couse Foundation.
The Porter documents have a primary focus on artists Walter Ufer and Victor Higgins but also contain source materials for other members of the TSA, and include an original letter from Georgia O’Keeffe to Porter regarding her connection to TSA artists.
“The Foundation is honored to receive this extraordinary gift from our good friend Dean Porter,” Jones added.