Trailblazing New Orleans gallerist Arthur Roger gifts his collection to NOMA

NEW ORLEANS, LA — Pride of Place: The Making of Contemporary Art in New Orleans showcases renowned art collector and gallery owner Arthur Roger’s transformational gift of his entire personal art collection to the New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA). Spotlighting one of the city’s most groundbreaking contemporary art collections, the exhibition explores the rise of modern and contemporary art in New Orleans.

Since its founding in 1978, the Arthur Roger Gallery has been one of New Orleans’ most exciting venues for contemporary art. Roger’s personal collection of more than eighty paintings, photographs and sculptures reflects the gallery’s storied forty-year history, as well as Roger’s skill and sophistication as an art collector. Bringing together works of art Roger has collected from the 1970s through today, Pride of Place unfolds as an evolving narrative about place, identity, and belonging in New Orleans over the course of the last four decades.

“It is a privilege to present Pride of Place: The Making of Contemporary Art at NOMA and welcome into the museum’s collection a dynamic group of artworks that reflect Arthur’s lifelong commitment to contemporary art, and invaluable contributions to the art and culture of the city of New Orleans,” says Susan Taylor, The Montine McDaniel Freeman Director of NOMA.

Arthur Roger’s personal art collection incorporates many of the artists that his gallery exhibited over the years, including experimental works by local artists as well as vanguard works made all across the country. Many works featured in his collection were purchased long before the artists became established voices in contemporary art, further instituting Roger’s place as a pioneer in bringing contemporary art to New Orleans.

“Arthur Roger helped put the art of New Orleans into conversation with the broader art world, and into dialogue with the pressing social and political issues of our time. His collection offers an unparalleled glimpse into the history of New Orleans’ evolving art scene,” says Katie A. Pfohl, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at NOMA.

Featured Artists

Contemporary artists that will be added to NOMA’s permanent collection courtesy of Arthur Roger include, but are not limited to: Luis Cruz Azaceta, Willie Birch, Douglas Bourgeois, Robert Colescott, George Dureau, Robert Gordy, Deborah Kass, Catherine Opie, Robert Polidori, Holton Rower and John Waters.

Curator and Catalog

The exhibition is organized by Katie Pfohl, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the New Orleans Museum of Art. The exhibition will be accompanied by a richly illustrated 143-page catalogue that includes an interview between Arthur Roger and iconic American film director and artist John Waters and an essay on contemporary art in New Orleans by NOMA Curator Emeritus William Fagaly.

Exhibition-Related Programming

Artist Perspectives: Select artists featured in Pride of Place will present a series of lively Friday night gallery talks about their work and offer their perspectives on contemporary art in New Orleans.

John Waters Film Festival: Five films by iconic American film director and artist John Waters, whose photography is featured in Pride of Place, will be screened in NOMA’s auditorium throughout the summer.

Noontime Talks: Pride of Place curator Katie A. Pfohl and curatorial fellow Allison K. Young will lead noontime gallery talks that explore the artists and major themes behind the exhibition.


About NOMA and the Besthoff Sculpture Garden

The New Orleans Museum of Art, founded in 1910 by Isaac Delgado, houses nearly 40,000 art objects encompassing 5,000 years of world art. Works from the permanent collection, along with continuously changing special exhibitions, are on view in the museum’s 46 galleries Fridays from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The adjoining Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden features work by over 60 artists, including several of the 20th century’s master sculptors. The Sculpture Garden is open seven days a week: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The New Orleans Museum of Art and the Besthoff Sculpture Garden are fully accessible to handicapped visitors and wheelchairs are available from the front desk. For more information about NOMA, call (504) 658-4100 or visit Wednesdays are free admission days for Louisiana residents, courtesy of The Helis Foundation. (May not include special exhibitions.) Teenagers (ages 13-19) receive free admission every day through the end of the year, courtesy of The Helis Foundation.

Contact Margaux Krane, Communications and Marketing Manager, for additional information and hi-res images:, 504.658.4016.


Gallery of select works of art from Pride of Place