Hillwood Art Museum is pleased to present Peach Blossom Spring: The Magrill Collection of Chinese Art. The exhibition that is the source for this website has special significance for the Museum in that it marks the first major exhibition of Chinese artwork from the Collection. Furthermore, it illustrates one couple’s commitment to building a collection and sharing it with the academic community of Long Island University.
The Magrill Collection represents one of the largest and most culturally significant donations to the Museum from a single private collection. For many years, the study of Chinese culture has held a special place in the lives of Mrs. Patricia and Dr. Robert Magrill. The Magrills’ interest in Chinese art began with their visits to China in the 1970s and continued with tours of many world-class collections in their adopted home state of California. Retirement from medical practice in 1994 allowed Bob to pursue collecting even more passionately. Both he and his wife Pat continued to refine their knowledge of Chinese culture, as well as the content of their collection, with additional visits to China. Of course, spending many hours of study at the Huntington Hartford Museum in Pasadena California was also
important to nurturing their interest.
The works of art chosen for this project represent but a small portion of the Magrills’ donation to Hillwood Art Museum. While the collection primarily focuses on work from the Ming (1368-1644) and the Qing Dynasty (1644–1911), additional works representing both earlier and modern periods are displayed. One may navigate the website by looking at images of the entire collection, scholarly essays, or refine the images by searching specific dynasties. Regardless of how you choose to navigate the site, I hope that you find the images as captivating as we have.
I am grateful to the Magrills for their generosity to the Long Island University community and fortunate to call them friends. The support of the New York State Council on the Arts was essential to the development of this exhibition and its accompanying website. I would also like to especially thank Richard A. Pegg, Ph. D., Guest Curator, for his insights into the complexities of the Three Perfections in Chinese painting.
Director, Hillwood Art Museum