Marcel Sternberger, Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera, 1952, Mexico City, Image date 1952, Print Date 2017, Silver gelatin print, Gift of Robert and Malena Puterbaugh in memory of Anne Tucker, recipient of the 2008 Harrison-Hooks Lifetime Achievement Award, Polk Museum of Art

Marcel Sternberger, Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera, 1952, Mexico City

Marcel Sternberger’s career, which spanned the decades 1930-1950, spanned a tumultuous period in modern history. Sternberger brought his journalist talents to bear on the intersection of portrait photography and psychology. He sought the genuine and spontaneous moments when sitters had dropped their guard. These precious instants provided a glimpse of true character. Over the course of his professional life, he developed a technique for using light, positioning, and a contemporaneous interview of his subjects to create not only a striking image of an individual, but one that allowed for personality, emotion, and experience to be visually expressed.

He took portraits of many icons of his time including President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Sigmund Freud, Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, Albert Einstein, H.G. Wells, George Bernard Shaw, Prime Ministers Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi of India, and many others. His portrait of President Roosevelt became the image used as the model for the American dime. He served as "Private Photographer to the Belgian Royal Family" beginning in 1935 and his images of the royal children were printed on Belgian postage stamps, which bore his name.

While living in New York City, the Sternbergers travelled to Mexico to photograph Miguel Aleman, Mexico’s president, among other business and governmental elites. After this official presidential session they ironically became intimate friends of the communist radicals and artists Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo. Although Rivera and his wife Frida are world-renowned for their self-portraits, it was Steinberger who produced photographs that Rivera said were, "The first time I have seen the real me... behind the mask I have all the time."

Reynier Llanes, Alone for a Lucky Charm - Instruction for a Talisman, 2015, Oil on canvas, Gift of the artist, made possible by Harmon-Meek Gallery, FP.2017.13.1

Reynier Llanes, Alone for a Lucky Charm - Instruction for a Talisman

Reynier Llanes was born in Pinar del Rio, Cuba in 1985. He attended the city’s school of art (Instructores de arte) for four years and completed his studies in 2004. In Havana, Reynier was tutored by one of the country’s most recognized realist artists, Juan Miguel Suárez.

In 2007 LIanes availed himself of an opportunity to emigrate from Cuba and moved to the United States, first settling in Naples, FL, then in Charleston, SC, and ultimately, Miami, FL.  

In 2012 Oxford America recognized Llanes as one of the "New Superstars of Southern Art." He was awarded a "First Purchase Award" for a piece now in the art collection of the city of Charleston 2011 at Moja Art Festival Juried Exhibition Award. His art is on permanent exhibition in the Museum collection of Franklin G. Burroughs - Simeon B. Chapin Art Museum in Myrtle Beach, SC,Cornell Fine Arts Museum Rollins College, and Snite Museum of Art - South Bend, Indiana. His work has been exhibited in numerous museums and galleries throughout the East Coast, among them the Naples Museum of Art in Naples, FL. 

Robert Vickrey,  Poster Wall , 1986, Lithograph, edition of 100, Gift of J. William Meek, III (FSC '72) & Barbara Hanson Meek (FSC '76), FP.2017.26

Robert Vickrey, Poster Wall, 1986, Lithograph, edition of 100, Gift of J. William Meek, III (FSC '72) & Barbara Hanson Meek (FSC '76), FP.2017.26

Robert Vickrey, Poster Wall

Robert Vickrey was born in 1926 in Manhattan. He studied art at the Pomfret School in Pomfret, Connecticut, before enlisting in the Navy’s V-12 officers’ training program, which sent him to study at Wesleyan University and Yale.

After earning a bachelor’s degree at Yale in 1947, he spent a year in New York studying with Reginald Marsh and Kenneth Hayes Miller at the Art Students League before returning to Yale, where he received a bachelor of fine arts degree in 1950.

Vickrey mastered the Renaissance technique of egg tempera painting as a student at Yale and used his consummate skill to create his realistic, yet dreamlike images. In his work Vickrey assumes the viewpoint of the realistic observer, but calls himself "anti-romantic," and says that to the careful viewer his paintings "always [convey] a sense of danger."

In the 1950s and ’60s Mr. Vickrey was a highly visible artist. He was included in no fewer than nine of the Whitney Museum’s annual exhibitions showcasing contemporary art. He was also commissioned to paint dozens of portraits for the cover of Time, notably a portrait from life of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. for the magazine’s Man of the Year issue in 1964.