Institute receives new art

By Julie Listek

The 77 Dada and Surrealist works of art donated to the Art Institute of Chicago also is an important addition to those working in the field of art at NIU.

Surrealist art does not have a definite style, said Joshua Kind, professor of art history. “The art encompasses many different aspects to form an image resulting in a concept of dreams, fantasy and vision—it seeks to produce a mood of magic.”

The donation to the Art Institute was one of the many donations to various museums, such as the Metroploitan Museum of Art, the National Gallery and the Museum of Art in New York.

Jerry Meyer, assistant chairman of the School of Art, said the donation to the art museum was extremely generous because the works are one of the top five collections the museum has and is an important resource for art students.

“I feel that through donations, art works are made available for viewing that the public may never had the chance to see before,” he said.

NIU also has a “representative sample of Surrealist art at the museum on campus,”said Linda Martin, director of the NIU Art Museum. “Although we (NIU Art Museum) collect mainly modern and contemporary art, we do have a minor portion of Surrealist art.”

The Melvin Pfaelzer Surrealist Art Collection was donated in 1985 and consists of more than 170 prints. In 1985 the collection already was worth several hundred thousand dollars.

This particular collection is the largest and most significant collection NIU has ever received, Meyer said.

The majority of the Pfaelzer collection is located in the NIU Art Museum in the second floor of Altgeld Hall. Other prints of the collection can be found in various buildings around campus.

Other collections of art can be viewed at the NIU Art Museum on 210 Superior St. in Chicago.