BENTONVILLE — The Alfred Stieglitz Collection will make its Arkansas debut this morning during a preview for reporters, more than a year after a Tennessee judge approved an agreement for Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art to share the art collection with Fisk University in Nashville, the original benefactor.
The court decision ended a seven-year legal battle waged in Tennessee courts while officials with the Bentonville museum waited for the outcome.
The works will debut to museum members on Friday and to the public on Saturday.
Tennessee’s attorney general argued that selling any part of the 101-piece Stieglitz collection was against the wishes of Georgia O’Keeffe, the prominent painter and Stieglitz’s wife. She donated the collection in Stieglitz’s honor to Fisk University, a historically black college, in 1949.
Two of O’Keeffe’s works — her iconic painting of the Radiator Building, Night, New York (1927), and Flying Backbone (1944) — are included in the Alfred Stieglitz Collection, as well as a 1904 oil painting by Pablo Picasso, two color lithographs by Auguste Renoir and works by American modernist artists Marsden Hartley, John Marin and Arthur Dove, the latter being members of a group known as “The Stieglitz Circle.”
The modernist era has been described as a time when bright colors entered the palettes of painters and the first nonobjective paintings were displayed in galleries.