Dr. Sandra Olsen to speak on “Ponder Price, Purchase: Armand Castellani – Building a Collection in the 1980s”

May 12, 2014  |  by Susan Clements

  • Dr. Sandra Olsen

The Castellani Art Museum of Niagara University will present its sixth “Meet Me at the CAM” art history series on five consecutive Thursdays starting May 15, 2014.

Admission is free for Castellani Art Museum members, and $5 per program for non-members. Membership signup is available at the registration desk at each program. Membership applications may also be downloaded from the museum’s website and mailed to the museum prior to the series. Each program begins at 10 a.m. with light refreshments and coffee.

Meet Me at the CAM: “ART CITY” focuses on contemporary art, artists, galleries, and collectors. The series opens with a presentation by former director Sandra Olsen, Ph.D.,  on the formation of the museum’s collection of modern and contemporary art. Dr. Olsen travelled often to Manhattan with founder Armand Castellani as they acquired the artwork that would form the core of the collection. “Armand Castellani’s goal for collecting artwork was to fill a museum with a collection of artwork that could serve as a cultural and educational center for Niagara County and WNY at Niagara University. It was a daunting goal in the 1980’s when the art market was increasingly global, artwork had become synonymous with financial investment and prices were soaring. Armand succeeded because of his unique combination of his ingenious business acumen, particularly price analysis, his breathtaking enthusiasm for learning, and his dedication to philanthropy.”

Dr. Olsen is director of the University at Buffalo Art Galleries: UB Art Gallery and UB Anderson Gallery. Before coming to the UB Art Galleries, Dr. Olsen was director of the Castellani Art Museum of Niagara University for 21 years. There, she formulated the collection, curated exhibitions and planned the museum’s construction.

Meet Me at the CAM – “ART CTY” Program Schedule

May 15, 2014: Ponder, Price, Purchase – Armand Castellani: Building a Collection in the 1980s
Speaker: Sandra Olsen, Ph.D., Director of the University of Buffalo Art Galleries and former director of the Castellani Art Museum of Niagara University.
Dr. Olsen will bring to life a particularly exciting time in the “Art City” of Manhattan as she and founder Armand Castellani acquired the artwork that would form the core of the Castellani collection.

May 22, 2014: Arts Services Initiative and the Western New York Cultural Scene
Speaker: Tod Kniazuk, Executive Director of Arts Services Initiative of WNY
Learn about how artists, performers and organizations are coming together to create
one of America’s most exciting and diverse cultural scenes – right here in Western New York!

May 29, 2014: Film – ART CITY: “A Ruling Passion”
Speaker: Michael J. Beam, Castellani Art Museum Curator of Exhibitions and Collections, artist and adjunct professor of Art History at Niagara University.
“ART CITY – A Ruling Passion plumbs issues that affect artists – preoccupations of startling universality – like community, motivation and controversy, finding one’s audience, and just ‘getting it right’”

June 5, 2012: Film – ART CITY: “Making it in Manhattan”
Speaker: Angelica Maier, Castellani Art Museum Interim Curator of Education
“Unlike any art movie you’ve ever seen, Making it in Manhattan is informed ‘entertainment’ about the people who make contemporary art. Artists, collectors, and dealers bring to life the art capital of the world, New York, as it plunges into the 21st Century.”

June 12, 2015 Film – ART CITY: “Simplicity”
Speaker: Kurt Von Voetsch, Castellani Art Museum Gallery Manager, artist and adjunct professor of Fine Arts at Niagara University.
“ART CITY – Simplicity touches on artists’ relations with the press, ambiguous feelings about showing one’s work, distilling concepts into an essence and what it means to succeed in the art world.”

For more information or to register, call Susan Clements, Coordinator of Community Relations at 716-286-8201 or visit www.castellaniartmuseum.org.