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Eclectic photo exhibition from LACMA arts council at Duncan Miller Gallery

Members of the photographic council share favorites from their diverse collections.

August 14, 2010|By Suzanne Muchnic, Special to the Los Angeles Times

Not all members of the Photographic Arts Council are collectors, Salvesen says. Some are photographers who do not collect; others are enthusiasts who want to learn. But the presence of collectors, she says, is "part of what makes others want to join because they are really generous in showing their collections and sharing their stories."

"For those who haven't purchased work, it's intimidating," she says. "To hear people you know talk about their experiences with galleries or art fairs or auctions or flea markets is encouraging. That's great for the museum. We want to foster collecting in the private sector, not only in the expectation of getting gifts and support but because personal collecting increases one's belief in the museum's mission. Museums and individuals are both part of the preservation of cultural heritage and great works of art."

As "Collectors' Favorites" evolved, Miller worked closely with Dennis Reed, dean of arts at Los Angeles Valley College and then-chair of the council, who preceded Gloria Katz Huyck. When the works arrived, Miller had to deal with an eclectic assortment of subject matter, styles and sizes.

Miller says the biggest challenge in putting on the show was the installation. But will he do it again? "I don't know," he says, a few days before the opening. "Ask me later."

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