Arts: Museums: Illuminating the Impressionists

Illuminating the Impressionists

The eminent visiting Frenchman was being shown through the Art Institute of Chicago by its then president, Chauncey McCormick, when he asked in astonishment: "How can you possibly afford all these marvelous impressionist pictures?" The proud response was: "We do not buy them; we inherit them from our grandmothers."

Thanks to Chicago grandmothers like Mrs. Potter Palmer, the impressionist-loving grande dame of Chicago society in the 1890s, to say nothing of grandfathers like Hardware Heir Frederic Clay Bartlett, who gave the museum Seurat's La Grande Jatte, the Art Institute...

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