Long-time art dealer Phillip A. Bruno made news by donating a huge portion of his art collection to the Hunterian Art Gallery in Scotland. The 74 works he donated to the museum include artists like Lee Gatch, David Levine, William Dole, Robert Andrew Parker, Red Grooms and Tom Otterness. Some works also come from international artists like José Luis Cuevas (Mexico) and Masayuki Nagare (Japan). The works offer a huge variety, ranging from paintings and drawings to prints and sculptures.
Phillip Bruno first saw a Vincent van Gogh painting in 1948, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art New York. The encounter set him on a path to collecting works of great artists. Apart from staying in touch with the van Gogh family, Bruno would befriend artists Alberto Giacometti and Henri Matisse. As a collector of art, Bruno was active from 1950 to 2010. In this career spanning six decades, he collected the works of George Rickey, Dale Chihuly and Constantin Brancusi, among others. The majority of artists in his collection hailed from New York City, but others came from West Coast, Oceania and even Europe. Bruno has previously served as the director of Marlborough Gallery and Staempfli Gallery, both in New York. Despite formally retiring as an art dealer in 2010, Bruno has been quite active in the art field nonetheless.
The Hunterian is the oldest public museum of Scotland and currently a part of the University of Glasgow. Peter Black, the curator at Hunterian, was very grateful towards Bruno’s donation. In his words, the collection:
“provides us with a snapshot of the art world in New York in that long period, and very few of these artists would have entered our collection if it hadn’t been for this gift.”
19 of the 74 donated works would be showcased at the Hunterian next week. A larger exhibition is being planned to present the entire collection to the public, possibly in early next year.