R. W. Norton Art Gallery
|R. W. Norton Art Gallery|
The R. W. Norton Art Gallery, in Shreveport, Louisiana, USA, houses collections of American and European paintings, sculptures and decorative arts spanning more than four centuries. Since its opening in 1966, the museum has become particularly well-known around the country for its impressive collections of works by artists of the American West, Frederic Remington and Charles M. Russell.
In the early 1930s, Richard W. Norton (1886–1940) became one of the discoverers of the Rodessa Oil Field in north Louisiana. Over time, Mr Norton's wife and son began to amass a significant collection of fine art. In 1946, to honor Mr. Norton and for the benefit of the community, Richard W. Norton, Jr. (1919–1974) and his mother, Mrs Richard W. Norton (1886–1975) created the R. W. Norton Art Foundation. In turn, the Foundation eventually established the R. W. Norton Art Gallery, basing its initial collection upon donations from the acquisitions of the Nortons. Today, due to the on-going efforts of the Board of Control, the Foundation's work and the Gallery's offerings continue to expand, grow, and contribute to their community.
The building and collection
When the building for the R. W. Norton Art Gallery was originally planned, it was determined to use a contemporary design that would be light, open, and possess the potential for expansion. The resulting Gallery opened in 1966 and presently contains twenty-four exhibition rooms. The long-range plans of the founders were realized when an expanding collection led to the addition of a south wing, opened in 1990, and a north wing in 2003.
The collection includes important American and European works. It is especially rich in works by Frederic Remington and Charles M. Russell, Americans who painted the vivid West.
The Gallery and its grounds are open to the public year round, attracting thousands of national and local visitors. Guided tours are available by appointment for groups of 10 or more people from Fourth Grade to adults and can be designed to relate to a specific course or topic.
The Gallery provides community lectures to civic organizations and school groups on request at no charge. The program covers highlights from the Gallery's permanent collection and current special exhibitions. Lectures on these or special topics can be scheduled by calling the Gallery.
The Gallery is set within 40 acres (160,000 m2) of landscaping, including azalea gardens featuring more than 15,000 plants, including several hundred native azaleas. A winding walking path leads visitors through the grounds, which include a small bridge over a stream, a pond, benches within the azalea beds, and outdoor sculptures. Recently the gardens were rated as one of the South's favorite spots as featured in Southern Living's spring 2005 issue.