Arts patron Virginia Wright, who donated much of what became Western's Outdoor Sculpture Collection, dies at age 91

  • Virginia Wright (right) poses with sculptor Mark di Suvero as he assembles “For Handel” on what is now the PAC Plaza on Western's campus in 1974. Wright bought the soaring I-beam sculpture for Western after losing out on a different di Suvero work.
    Virginia Wright (right) poses with sculptor Mark di Suvero as he assembles “For Handel” on what is now the PAC Plaza on Western's campus in 1974. Photo by Jack Carver/courtesy Whatcom Museum
  • portrait of Virginia Wright
    Virginia Wright

Virginia Wright,  the longtime patron of the arts in the Seattle area who donated the core group of pieces that would become Western's renowned Outdoor Sculpture Collection, has died at the age of 91.

"We are deeply saddened by the passing of Virginia Wright and just as grateful for her vision and generosity in shaping Western's nationally recognized sculpture collection," said WWU President Sabah Randhawa. "The legacy she has established on Western's campus and the arts community in the Pacific Northwest will be treasured for many years to come."

Of the collection’s more than two dozen pieces, the Virginia Wright Fund purchased five and partially paid for two others. Six more works were donated from the Wrights’ private collection. Wright's impact on the campus can be seen in works we walk by every day, from Richard Serra's "Wright's Triangle" (named for Virginia) outside the Ross Engineering Building to the just renovated and relocated "Untitled" by Donald Judd, which now rests near Academic West.

For more on Wright's impact on the arts landscape of the Pacific Northwest, see these two links below, as well as the attached PDF of "Artistic Gifts," a story about Wright from the spring 2012 issue of Window Magazine.

 

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Thursday, February 20, 2020 - 12:08pm

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