The Seattle Art Museum’s “Seeing Nature” exhibit features 39 landscape masterworks from the past four hundred years. All owned by a man for whom money is really no object. Billionaire Paul Allen.
Seattle Art Museum chief curator Chiyo Ishikawa knows the story.
“He was visiting entertainment mogul David Geffen one time and said ‘Wow! It must be incredible to live with art’ and David Geffen said ‘You could do this too’.So he went out and bought a great Monet water lilies. The one that's in the exhibition. Not everybody can start that way."
You may never have visited the magical floating city of Venice in your own life, but a walk through the exhibition will take you to one of Allen's favorite cities.
“Both the antiquity of Venice and the light and the architecture all blend together to create special moods that I think painters were attracted to.” Allen has said.
The early paintings are rich in golden colors. Later painting less so.
“One thing that happens over time is (that these paintings) become infused with a sense of melancholy because it's an imperiled city,” says Ishikawa. “It's an impossible city.”
You will also see many interpretations of the Grand Canyon and landscapes from 20th century masters.
“Seeing Nature” just might change the way you see nature. And how much you appreciate it.