Playing Favorites: Scott Tarr & Paul Manship

We’ve asked FWMoA staff the hardest question you can ask art museum people: so, what is your favorite artwork currently on display? As “art museum people”, we often get asked about our favorite artists, artworks, and the art we choose to hang on our own walls. Since not all of our staff are front-end, and not all of them write for the blog, this series gives everyone a chance to get to know them, too. Taking advantage of our rotating exhibitions of artworks, from painted portraits to sculpted bronzes, FWMoA staff from all departments are choosing artworks that enthrall and enchant them; or, in other words, playing favorites.

Scott Tarr, FWMoA Director of Facilities. Photo courtesy of FWMoA.

Scott Tarr, FWMoA Director of Facilities, has made the art museum his place of work for 36 years! His current favorite? A set of maquettes (he couldn’t pick just one!) by Paul Manship, on display in Bronze: The Artistic Interest.

Q: What is the first thing you noticed about this artwork? What drew you to this particular piece?

A: I have always loved these pieces. I love the movement and mood in each piece and how they convey the period of time they represent.

Q: Would you hang this artwork in your home? Why or why not?

A: I would live with all four of these pieces in a heartbeat!!! (If they ever come up missing from the vault, start looking for them at my house.)

Q: What does this artwork mean to you?

A: I like their connection to Fort Wayne, with the “Hoosier Youth” sculpture done by Manship in front of the Lincoln Life offices on Harrison Street.

I know they are maquettes, or a sculptor’s scale model, for pieces done for the 1939 World’s Fair in Flushing Meadow, NY. Manship’s Prometheus sculpture and work at Rockefeller Center, NYC is also pretty amazing.

A gallery shot of Paul Manship’s series now on view. Photo courtesy of FWMoA.

Q: Why did you choose to work in an art museum?

A: I applied for a part-time security guard position in 1985. I got the job and worked my way to full-time and eventually became the Director of Facilities. I love being around all of the artwork, even the pieces I don’t particular care for; it all makes you think.

Q: What has been your favorite exhibition at FWMoA during your employment? What exhibition are you most looking forward to in the next year or two?

A: That’s a tough one after almost 36 years. The Paul Manship Exhibition and the Robert Morris glass exhibitions were pretty spectacular.

Q: What kid of art (if any) do you have in your home?

A: I like to collect local artists and actively collect Blenko Glass.

Come visit FWMoA to see Scott Tarr’s favorite artworks, Paul Manship’s Moods of Time series, on view through May 30th, 2021!

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