Herb & Dorothy
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Top Customer Reviews
But if you had seen them walking down the streets of lower Manhattan in So-Ho or Tribeca sometime in the early 1970's (very unhip areas back then) you would have been very puzzled. Why would this tiny couple (they are both short) be walking around these rough neighborhoods full of punk clubs, drug addicts, scary leather bars, empty lofts and all kinds of disreputable people and why aren't they scared?
The reason is because they were probably on their way to see some emerging artist in his workspace or to attend some offbeat gallery show of minimalist art. Later you might have seen them heading back uptown on the subway or in a taxi with packages of art. You would have thought, well, this is just strange enough to be typical in New York.
Here, you would be wrong.
Herb and Dorothy Vogel are anything but typical. He was a worker for the US Post Office, with only a couple of years of high school for education, but he was a voracious reader of art books and an overall intelligent autodidact. She was a highly educated woman with a graduate degree who made a fine career working for the New York Public Library.
But, living frugally on her salary, the Vogels were able to use his salary to buy art. What kind of art? Well, mostly minimalist art from some known, but mostly from unknown artists. What were their criteria for purchase? There was only one, they simply had to like it. That's it.Read more ›
It is a fascinating warts-and-all portrayal of Herbert & Dorothy Vogel, a pair of working class art collectors who manage to put together one of the most extensive collections of minimialist and conceptual modern abstract art by visiting local NYC artists in their studios (to buy directly from them rather than through a gallery) and driving a hard bargain.
The film does a good job of explaining how Herb & Dorothy got involved in the NYC art world and got started on collecting art back in the 1950s. Although it is primarily shot in the "present" day with reminesces to those earlier times by not only Herb & Dorothy, but by many artists and others who knew them in the art scene, there is some archival footage of a younger Herb & Dorothy at art exhibitions, etc. It brings the viewer from those early beginnings up to the present day, with some very interesting developments in the latter part of the film.
The film is generally flattering - and Herb & Dorothy are a tremendously cute elderly couple - but notes that some artists and participants in the NYC art scene view the Vogels as exploitative, approaching local artists when they are vulnerable by discovering them before they make it big and offering them paltry sums that will barely put food on the table or pay their rent for pieces that will eventually become tremendously valuable. The viewer is left to judge these criticisms for him or herself.Read more ›
At H&D we have two very simple, loving individuals that not only they are not rich at all as far as their business accomplishment or their check book is concerned it is undeniably shocking to see so much love between not only Herb and Dorothy but the same love that they extend to all the artists that they work with and purchase their art works, their turtles, fish, city of New York, neighborhood, and more importantly the art work that they collect not as a financial investment but love.
Dr. Barns set up an unbelievable collection. I could care less for the H&D's art since it is not my taste at all, Dr. Barns collection is the one that I am fascinated by but as a human being, spiritually I admired and cherished H&D.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A charming look at two committed art collectors who enjoyed the hunt almost more than the acquisition- but to great effect and philanthropy...Published 4 months ago by Michael Eggert
Herb and Dorothy is the name of a documentary about the Vogels. To all appearances they are an average if somewhat short couple. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Phred
I've watched this twice and will watch it again. I am moved by their passion for art and their generosity. I will be visiting their collection this year.Published 10 months ago by Catherine O.
it is about a couple who start out young and their interest in abstract art. this is their hobby, and their life.