Featured Acquisition

Family Reunion in the Gallery

Left: Portrait of John Nash Fowler; Right: Portrait of Delia (Scott) Fowler

With a recent gift of American portraits of a husband and wife, there is a rare opportunity to have a “painted” family reunion at the FIA. Portraits of family members often are separated when they are passed down to heirs who end up far apart from each other. So, it’s not always guaranteed that a group of related portraits will end up together again in the same room. In the case of the Fowler family, this reunion came about because of two heirs of John Nash and Delia Scott Fowler: Adelaide Schnuck, great-granddaughter, who lived in Michigan, and Henry Livingston, 3rd great-grandson, currently living in North Carolina.

Concerning the portraits of the parents, they were inherited by Caroline (1833–1908), the Fowlers’ eldest daughter. Caroline was the great-great-grandmother of William Gilbert Livingston, Jr., father of Henry Livingston. Henry and Julie Livingston were inspired to donate the pendant portraits of the Fowler parents because they knew that one of the most beloved paintings in the FIA collection was the portrait of the Fowler children (from left to right): Delia (1838–1907), age sixteen, Milo (1839–1872), age fifteen, and Gertrude (1846–1907), age eight. By the time this portrait was painted in 1854, Caroline, not pictured, was twenty-one years old.

The Michigan history of the portraits begins when John Nash Fowler (1812–1879), a wealthy ship owner and lumberman from Clayton, New York, moved his family to Detroit in 1856. By that time, both the portraits of the parents and the children were finished and would have been on view in the Fowler home on 500 Woodward Avenue (now the location of the Central Methodist Church). The Flint connection begins, at least in the case of the Fowler children portrait when Delia Fowler Tucker moved to the Flint area with her husband in 1871. She inherited the painting from her father after his death in 1879, and it eventually was passed down to Delia’s granddaughter Adelaide Willison Schnuck (Mrs. Ernest C. Schnuck), who gave it to the FIA in 1976.

We are delighted that the family, separated miles apart and removed from each other for more than 100 years, are now reunited through these paintings.

American, 19th century. The Fowler Children, 1854. Oil on canvas, 49 × 61 1/4 inches. Gift of the Estate of Mrs. Ernest C. Schnuck, 1976.1

American, 19th century. The Fowler Children, 1854. Oil on canvas, 49 × 61 1/4 inches. Gift of the Estate of Mrs. Ernest C. Schnuck, 1976.1


Recent Acquisitions

Douglas Bourgeois, American, born 1951. Warrior, 2013. Linocut on paper, 18 × 12 inches. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Chris Brink, 2020.55

Karsten Creightney, American, born 1976. Roadside Gambler, 2013. Linocut on paper, 22 × 30 inches.   Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Chris Brink, 2020.56 
Michael Krueger, American, born 1967. Lizard King, 2008. Lithograph on paper, 16 × 30 1/4 inches. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Chris Brink, 2020.57 
Renée Stout, American, born 1958. Lovers in a Photobooth, 2014. Archival pigment print, 8 × 1 3/4 inches. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Chris Brink, 2020.58
After Pierre-Antoine Poiteau, French, 1766–1854. Bergamotte d’Ete, ca. 1846. Hand-colored stipple engraving on paper, 14 × 11 inches. Gift of Dr. Seymour and Barbara K. Adelson, 2020.59
After Pierre-Antoine Poiteau, French, 1766–1854. Bergamotte de Soulers, ca. 1846. Hand-colored stipple engraving on paper, 14 × 11 inches. Gift of Dr. Seymour and Barbara K. Adelson, 2020.60
Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, American, 1867–1959. Manufactured by Oakbrook Esser Studios, American, founded 1986. Lake Geneva Tulip, n.d. Clear and colored iridescent glass, zinc channel construction, mahogany stand, 20 7/8 × 18 3/8 inches. Gift of Dr. Seymour and Barbara K. Adelson, 2020.61
Sonja Blomdahl, American, born 1952. Violet Heliosphere, 1984. Blown glass, 7 × 13 1/2 inches. diameter Gift of Gilbert B. and Zelma H. Gottlieb, 2020.62
Richard Ritter, American, born 1940. Vase, ca. 1967. Blown glass, 7 3/4 × 6 × 4 3/4 inches. Gift of Gilbert B. and Zelma H. Gottlieb, 2020.63  
American. Portrait of John Nash Fowler, ca. 1840. Oil on canvas, 32 × 27 inches. Gift of Henry and Julie Livingston, in memory of the descendants of John Nash Fowler and Delia (Scott) Fowler, 2020.64
American. Portrait of Delia (Scott) Fowler, ca. 1840. Oil on canvas, 32 × 27 inches. Gift of Henry and Julie Livingston, in memory of the descendants of John Nash Fowler and Delia (Scott) Fowler, 2020.65
Vincent Stoltenberg Lerche, Norwegian, 1837–1892. Venice at Night, ca. 1864. Oil on canvas, 29 1/2 × 43 1/2 inches. Gift of Helga Luise Bryant, 2020.66 
Matthew Owen Wead, American, born 1984. Ahmaud Arbery, 2020. Woodcut on paper, 36 × 24 inches. Museum purchase with funds from the Collection Endowment, 2020.67
Matthew Owen Wead, American, born 1984. Breonna Taylor, 2020. Woodcut on paper, 36 × 24 inches. Museum purchase with funds from the Collection Endowment 2020.68
Matthew Owen Wead, American, born 1984. George Floyd, 2020. Woodcut on paper, 36 × 24 inches. Museum purchase with funds from the Collection Endowment, 2020.69