The John Crane Estate

John Crane was born and raised in Missouri, and had an early penchant for music and a strong connection to his family here in the Midwest. His career in business took him around the country, and in every place he called home, he surrounded himself with art and music. He built a remarkable collection of abstract paintings acquired both in his travels and sometimes right here in Columbia. When exhibiting abstraction we’ve often used the metaphor of instrumental music; art that does not rely on recognizable pictures can be absorbed much like music without lyrics, that is with immediacy, intuition, and an understanding that the artist imbued some emotion or experience that we as listeners or viewers are able to absorb without direct explanation. It is clear that John Crane understood and enacted this metaphor, and that he was drawn to works that supplant and even surpass pictorial narrative. We are honored that he left instructions before his passing in 2022 for our representation of the artwork in his estate. It spans decades of recent art history and a variety of abstract approaches from minimalism to color field. We are pleased to present the John Crane Estate Collection in the context of the gallery space as well as this catalog, both of which we feel honor the vision and impeccable taste of this thoughtful collector.