• Description

Lucy Truman Aldrich (1869-1955) and Abby Greene Aldrich Rockefeller (1874- 1948) were both enthusiastic collectors of Asian art and great benefactors to the Asian art collections at the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) Museum. Lucy Aldrich's collection of Asian textiles, donated between 1934 and 1956, is not only the single most significant gift of textiles to the Museum but is also one of the broadest and best collections of these materials in the world. Two other important gifts from Lucy Aldrich, a Benin head (39.054) and a spectacular Elizabethan Portrait of a Lady of the Hampden Family (42.283), enhance the Museum's holdings significantly. Her younger sister, Abby Aldrich Rockefeller, made a comparable gift to the Museum in 1934, when she donated her comprehensive collection of Japanese bird-and-flower prints (kachōga), one of the finest in the world. Mrs. Rockefeller and her husband, John D. Rockefeller, Jr. (1874-1960), also made various other gifts to the Department of Asian Art in the 1930s and 1940s, including other Japanese prints and a Chinese jade lithophone inscribed and dated 1761. These very generous benefactions have played a major role in shaping the character of the Asian collections at the RISD Museum.