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Wednesday, January 27, 2010


Posted By on Wed, Jan 27, 2010 at 5:06 PM

Through his blog Modern Art Notes, Tyler Green instigated a betting match between the Superbowl-bound teams' hometown museums: the Indianapolis Museum of Art and the New Orleans Museum of Art. What followed is the nerdiest trash talking seen this side of Spock vs. Skywalker.

IMA director Maxwell Anderson agreed, should the New Orleans Saints win the Superbowl, to loan this to NOMA for three months. Anderson didn't think too much on the bet. ("We're already spackling the wall where the NOMA loan will hang," he tweeted.)

NOMA's E. John Bullard raised the stakes — with a $4 million Renoir:

Max Anderson must not really believe the Colts can beat the Saints in the Super Bowl. Otherwise why would he bet such an insignificant work as the Ingrid Calame painting? Let's up the ante. The New Orleans Museum of Art will bet the three-month loan of its $4 million Renoir painting, Seamstress at Window, circa 1908, which is currently in the big Renoir exhibition in Paris. What will Max wager of equal importance? Go Saints!

Anderson fired back, offering a Jean-Valentine Morel jeweled cup. Then Bullard hit back with this:

I am amused that Renoir is too sweet for Indianapolis. Does this mean that those Indiana corn farmers have simpler tastes? If so why would Max offer us that gaudy Chalice — just looks like another over-elaborate Victorian tchotchke. Let's get serious. Each museum needs to offer an art work that they would really miss for three months. What would you like Max? A Monet, a Cassatt, a Picasso, a Miro? Sorry but we have no farm scenes or portraits of football players to send you.


Anderon's latest wager? This guy.

Stay tuned to Green's blog for any updates, though if Anderson goes any deeper, NOMA may as well occupy IMA's entire collection.

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