The Leepa/Rattner/Gentle (LRG) Collection was donated to St. Petersburg College in 1997 through the generosity of Allen and Isabelle Leepa. This collection served as the nucleus for the establishment of the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art. More than 5,000 objects, including paintings, sculptures, tapestries, stained glass, works on paper and extensive archives are owned by the SPC Foundation, but managed by the museum.
The primary works in the LRG Collection are by artists Abraham Rattner (1893-1978), Esther Gentle (1889-1991), and Allen Leepa (1919-2009). Rattner was a figurative expressionist who, through his use of color and movement, expressed reactions to the major world events of the 20th century. Esther Gentle, Rattner’s second wife, was a printmaker, sculptor and painter. Her son, Allen Leepa, was an abstract expressionist painter and noted author. Also within the LRG Collection are 280 works, mostly prints and works on paper, by 20th century American and European contemporaries of Rattner, including Pablo Picasso, Marc Chagall, Georges Rouault, Fernand Léger and an important bronze head by Henry Moore.
Gulf Coast Museum of Art Collection
In 2010, the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art expanded its scope to include much of the permanent collection of the Gulf Coast Museum of Art, which closed in 2009. This collection of 275 objects ranges from landscape paintings by noted 19th century American artist George Inness to contemporary photography by Clyde Butcher. The Gulf Coast Museum of Art Collection includes paintings, sculptures, mixed media works, fine art crafts and works on paper, primarily by 20th and 21st century artists from Florida and the southeastern United States.
LRMA, Inc. Collections
Since the establishment of the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art, Inc. as a collecting institution in 2002, LRMA has acquired over 1,000 important works of mostly 20th and 21st century art. Almost all donations were made through foundations and private collectors following the guidelines of the museum’s mission and collecting policies and procedures. These donations helped expand LRMA’s holdings in photography, prints, fine art crafts, as well as in painting and sculpture. Individual collections in the LRMA, Inc. holdings include:
- Caroline Adams-Bryd-Denjoy Collection: French prints (1950-2010)
- Richard Florsheim Art Fund: Repository of artist Richard Florsheim (1916-1979)
- Patricia A. and Thomas J. Lehnen Family Art Collection: Eclectic collection of 20th century American fine, folk and decorative art
- Dorothy Mitchell Collection: American prints (1990s)
- St. Petersburg College Foundation: American prints (1980-2000)
- Edna Andrews and Dr. Dietrich Schroeer Collection: Japanese prints (1880-1950)
- Rita Hayes Scott and Robert Russek Scott Collection: American and European painting, sculpture and decorative arts (1930-2000)
- Lothar and Mildred Uhl Collection: Mostly American prints and photographs (1850-1970)
- Barbara Witlin Collection: Works by Roy Witlin (1923-1997)
- Vladimir Yoffe Collection (Pasco Arts Council): Works by sculptor Vladimir Yoffe (1911-1997)
- Zipkin Family Collection: Works by Esther Gentle and Abraham Rattner