Obituary of the Day: Thomas M. Messer

Thursday, May 16, 2013

New York Times obituaries editor Bill McDonald joins us every day during the drive to discuss one life featured in the obit page. Today: museum director Thomas M. Messer.

→ From the WNYC Archives: Thomas Messer Interviewed on "Views on Art" (1967)

From the Obituary of Thomas M. Messer

"It was due to Tom’s charm, grace, diplomacy and — and this is a point that none of us should ever forget — his love of great art that Peggy gave her collection and palazzo to the Guggenheim and not to the Tate,” Peter Lawson-Johnston, who was the Guggenheim’s president during Mr. Messer’s directorship, said at a celebration of Mr. Messer’s 90th birthday in 2010. He added: “Here we are, three decades later, with Guggenheims in Bilbao, Berlin, Venice, and soon to be Abu Dhabi. The foundation for all this was laid by Tom Messer. And I can tell you, he laid that foundation under budget.”

-- Read the full obituary.


Bill McDonald

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