Recent Gifts to the Permanent Collection: Part II

This exhibition of recent gifts to the PAAM collection presents a wide range of eras and styles in Provincetown art, from long-time stalwarts of PAAM’s collection to first-time additions.

This group of artworks highlights PAAM’s rich collecting mission of representing this art colony’s diverse history, and features works from peers of Charles Hawthorne, one of the founders of the original Provincetown Art Association in 1914, to prominent mid-century abstractionists, to innovative contemporary artists who live and work in Provincetown today. This exhibition acts as a survey represented through recent gifts from generous benefactors and invites visitors to experience the deep breadth of PAAM’s collection across form and style.


The permanent collection is an important measure of any museum’s value. At PAAM, the holdings of local and regional art is extensive and dynamic, comprising more than 4,000 works by over 900 artists who have worked in Provincetown and on Cape Cod. The PAAM collection weaves together at least three major art movements—each a significant strand of American art history—and creates perspectives that uniquely position the Provincetown Art Colony as a pertinent fixture to the larger art world.

Each year, PAAM presents at least two exhibitions showcasing some of the recent gifts donated to our permanent collection. As an actively collecting museum, PAAM receives on average nearly 100 new works each year, and these exhibitions allow us to proudly display a selection of those works, some of which represent our first works by an artist in our permanent collection. We extend our deepest gratitude to our new and continuing donors.

Another measure of a museum is how well it uses its collection. The PAAM collection serves as a foundation for many of our educational programs and exhibitions. Programs for both youth and adults in our Lillian Orlowsky and William Freed Museum School use collection works to stimulate creativity. The Museum School courses take advantage of gallery exhibitions to clarify principles and techniques. Additionally, major museums and galleries borrow exemplary works for exhibitions around the country.

Image: James Lechay (1907-2001), Hopper House No. II, c. 1978, Gouache on paper, 22″ x 30″, Gift of Marjorie and Jack Rachlin, 2021