The Collections at the NAU Art Museum
Within our permanent collections, the NAU Art Museum holds some specific collections of note.
The Marguerite Hettel Weiss Collection and Gallery Accordion Closed
The Weiss Gallery is located inside the historic Old Main building (#10), on the third floor. Mrs. Weiss was born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio. She earned degrees from Miami University (Ohio) and the University of Cincinnati. She taught high school mathematics in the Cincinnati public schools for many years. As a compliment to her analytical abilities, Mrs. Weiss possessed a deep love of literature and art. Her studies at the University of Cincinnati included art, and it was here that her lifelong appreciation and enjoyment of art began. Her studies spanned the areas of architecture, sculpture, painting, landscaping, ceramics, fabrics, and interior design. Her unpublished writings cover diverse subjects such as architecture, sculpture, and poetry and other forms of literature. In addition to collecting fine works of art, Mrs. Weiss practiced watercolor painting.
Mrs. Weiss made many personal sacrifices to amass the collection that bears her name at Northern Arizona University. This eclectic collection contains numerous art objects from around the world. The collection includes furniture, sculptures, oils, watercolors, china, and silver. Some of the countries whose art is represented are Mexico, Great Britain, France, Peru, Italy, Africa, Costa Rica, India, China, and the United States. The collection also includes works by Native American and other Southwestern artists.
The Arthur M. Sackler Foundation Study Collection Accordion Closed
The Arthur M. Sackler Foundation Study Collection is an initiative of the Arthur M. Sackler Foundation whose mission is to educate and encourage interest and scholarship in the fields of Museum Studies, Asian Art and other cultural and historical areas of study at the Northern Arizona University. The Study Collection provides access for students and scholars to physically examine, evaluate and analyze more than 200 works of Asian art selected for this purpose, and gifted to the Foundation by Arthur M. Sackler, M.D. and his family.
The Arthur M. Sackler Foundation was established in 1965 by the late Arthur M. Sackler, M.D. (1913-1987). The Foundation lends art from its collection of more than 1,000 works of art to museums, organizes traveling exhibitions, and has published eleven scholarly catalogues of the Arthur M. Sackler Collections.
Aaron M. Macy Memorial Collection Accordion Closed
Aaron Macy attended NAU in the late 1990s and pursued a degree in ceramics. It was during those four undergraduate years that he fell in love with Flagstaff, creative expression, and his alma mater—he was especially drawn to the woodfired kilns on campus. The Macy house was filled with Aaron’s creations, and consequently, Doug also acquired a strong appreciation for ceramic art.
Doug Macy, Aaron’s Father, was not an artist or a Northern Arizona University alum. Yet he was passionate about two things: collecting art and NAU—he had his son to thank for both.
After graduation, Aaron moved to Ohio to pursue a Master of Fine arts in ceramics. At the start of his second year of grad school, he became ill and ultimately lost his battle with leukemia. He died at the age of 29.
Doug was eventually asked to chair NAU’s College of Arts and Letters Advisory Council—he set the agenda for the committee and played a big role in raising money for the college. Though it was the biannual council meetings that kept him coming back to campus, he stayed involved in any way he could. When he was in town, he visited with ceramic students and participated in student critiques. He also put his landscape architecture career to use.
From the placement, pathway, and patio of the Japanese teahouse to the construction of the ceramics clay-mixing building, Doug was instrumental in designing and implementing multiple elements on the grounds of the ceramics complex, including a memorial wall covered in woodfired ceramic tile in honor of Aaron.
The above text was extracted from an article by Carly Banks, NAU Communications, in the NAU News newsletter. Read the full article here: https://news.nau.edu/the-macy-legacy/#.XvZBFHt7ly0
You can see the tea house and the Aaron M. Macy Memorial Memorial wall at the ceramic complex on the south side of the Mountain Campus.
Doug’s intent for the collection was to have it on view in public locations across the campus and available for edifying student and community experiences. To that end, the NAU Art Museum will be presenting a number of exhibits within the museum over the first few years after receipt of the gift. The longer-term goal for the collection is to place artworks throughout the Flagstaff Mountain Campus, locations accessible by all community members, so that this tremendous gift can benefit and be appreciated more widely by Lumberjacks and campus visitors alike.