Director’s Choice: In Memoriam: Napi Van Dereck

March 27 - September 13, 2020

Curated by:
Christine McCarthy
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About the Exhibition


Historically, my Director’s Choice exhibitions have focused on contemporary women artists – not all of them and not because I have limited myself to those parameters.  This year is different.  This year is bittersweet.  This year, my choices are not really my choices – they are Napi’s. Napi Van Dereck was a steward of Provincetown art for decades, and incidentally, he was a champion of women artists.

This exhibition will feature over 40 artworks from the collection of Napi and Helen Van Dereck.  Napi passed away on Christmas Day and this exhibition is a way to honor his legacy and his keen eye.  Every picture has a story – the scenes of Town represent “the way it used to was”.  Each artwork was carefully selected for a personal reason and he could tell you, in detail, the back story.  Some of Provincetown’s most iconic vantage points and important pieces of history are represented by artists such as Gerrit Beneker, Nancy Maybin Ferguson, Blanche Lazzell, Ross Moffett, B.J.O. Nordfeldt, Pauline Palmer and George Yater among others.  We are so grateful to Helen Van Dereck for allowing PAAM to exhibit this unprecedented collection and I would personally like to thank Jim Bakker and Bill Evaul for their assistance in getting this body of work together.

Image: William Auerbach Levy (1889–1964), Clamdiggers, n.d., Oil on canvas, 40″ x 32″ From the Napi and Helen Van Dereck Collection