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Hemphill Gallery, The Chapin Collection

Selections from the Dolly Langdon and Aldus H. Chapin Collection June 7–August 2, 2014

Washington DC—HEMPHILL is pleased to announce the exhibition Selections from the Dolly Langdon and Aldus H. Chapin Collection, opening on Saturday, June 7, 2014, with a public reception from 6:00–8:00pm. The exhibition will remain on view through August 2, 2014.

Art dealers enter many homes that reverberate with the sheen of high-end interior design. These spaces are stunning. Each article is in position to perform as a prop in the theatrical narrative of the owner’s life. Then there are homes exploding with energy. No spot or space is left unfilled by art. The furniture, often beautiful, is present foremost for its function. It is apparent that these homes are purely about the art and its collectors. Dolly and Aldus Chapin’s home is bursting with such energy; artwork is everywhere. Their collection is comprised almost entirely of Washington artists acquired gradually over decades. Time reveals their selections to be prophetic.

To see the Chapin collection as simply an accumulation of many extraordinary objects is to be blind to the broader impact of their passion. Each acquisition tells a story of a greater purpose beyond personal ownership. It is clear by the who, what, where, when and why of each purchase that Dolly and Aldus participated in a community, bolstered artists’ studio operations, and strengthened the cultural life of Washington.

One question dominated our discussions with Mrs. Chapin about the handling of the collection: “What would be the most positive and exciting outcome?” We immediately recognized that most major museums already have excellent examples of works by the artists in the collection. It became clear that placing the work into the art market would create great excitement and would be the most efficient means for furthering each artist’s notoriety. So the goal was set to find new homes and new collectors, new places for the art to live. As we begin this task, inquiries are coming in from across the country and overseas, evidence of the growing importance of these artists and a testament to the impact upon Washington of Dolly and Aldus Chapin.

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Clark and Gene Davis Hemphill Gallery

clark hemphill


Selections from the Dolly Langdon and Aldus H. Chapin Collection features paintings, sculpture and works on paper by noted artists Karl Stanley Benjamin, Leon Berkowitz,Michael Clark (a.k.a. Clark Fox), Gene Davis, Thomas Downing, Sam Gilliam, Ed McGowin, John McLaughlin, Howard Mehring, Kenneth Noland, Paul Reed, Alma Thomas and Anne Truitt, many of whom are affiliated with the Washington Color School movement.

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