THE SCHORR COLLECTION
Treasured Works by European Masters
text and photos courtesy of Phoenix Art Museum
Phoenix Art Museum is the latest recipient of a generous long-term loan from the Schorr Collection, one of the most important collections of Old Master and 19th-century paintings in the world. The exhibition is on view now and features works by Anton Van Dyck, Bartolomeo Manfredi, and Gerrit van Honthorst, among others.
The Schorr Collection was founded by David and Hannah Lewis, a London-based couple dedicated to making their collection of masterpieces accessible to communities around the world. This will be the second time Phoenix Art Museum has received a long-term loan from the Schorr Collection.
“We are delighted to welcome new works from the Schorr Collection to Phoenix Art Museum,” said Amada Cruz, the Sybil Harrington Director and CEO of Phoenix Art Museum. “The collection is unparalleled in its breadth and selection, and we are grateful to the Lewis family for their commitment to making great art accessible to audiences all over the world. We look forward to sharing their generosity with our visitors, allowing our entire community to enjoy these historic treasures.”
Anton Van Dyck, Genoese Nobleman, 17th century. Oil on canvas. Long term loan from the Schorr Collection
With their first acquisition in 1967, the Lewises began collecting art for the purpose of finding pieces to hang on the walls of their home in London. That initial purchase sparked a passion that would consume their lives for decades to come, and forever transform the galleries of museums all over the world.
The Schorr Collection now numbers more than 500 works, ranging from 15th-century devotional images to 19th-century French impressionist landscapes and pieces by 20th-century Modern Masters. With a range of works from some of the most-recognized names in European painting, including Peter Paul Rubens, Tintoretto, El Greco, J.M.W. Turner, Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, Eugene Delacroix, Lucas Cranach the Elder, Camille Pissarro, and Alfred Sisley, the collection is one of the most comprehensive of its kind, and one of the largest private collections in the UK.
Jacob de Backer the Younger, The Last Judgement, 16th century. Oil on panel. Long term loan from the Schorr Collection.
The selection, now on loan to Phoenix Art Museum, highlights the collection’s strengths in 17th-century Italian and Dutch painting as well as some smaller pieces by artists no less canonical. This significant group will include a full-length 17th-century portrait by Anton van Dyck from his Genoa period and the Death of Seneca by Gerrit van Honthorst. There will also be two woodcuts by Albrecht Durer, as well as three of Francisco Goya’s most celebrated series: Los Caprichos, Disasters of War, and Los Proverbios (19th century). Other works on paper include pieces by Käthe Kollwitz, Mary Cassatt, and Alberto Giacometti.
Beyond their thoughtful efforts invested in collecting, the Lewis family has dedicated themselves to the task of sharing their art with museum-goers in the United States, the United Kingdom and beyond. They have lent works on a short- and long-term basis to museums and institutions in England, such as the Palace of Westminster in London and the Walker Gallery in Liverpool, and in farther-reaching destinations such as Tel Aviv and across the United States. By sharing these works, David and Hannah Lewis have ignited a passion and appreciation for these rare works in visitors far beyond their native England.
Peter Lely, Portrait of Barbara Palmer (1641-1709), née Villiers, Lady Castlemaine and Duchess of Cleveland, 17th century. Oil on canvas. Long term loan from the Schorr Collection.