Collecting 101: Donna Schneier Chats with Jody Harrison Grass

Jody Harrison Grass
Jody Harrison Grass

Here, accomplished collector and art and jewelry aficionado Donna Schneier speaks with Jody Grass about their shared love of collecting.

Raised in Norfolk,Virginia, Jody Harrison Grass is the Chairman of the Boca Raton Musuem of Art in Palm Beach County, Florida.

Grass’s first job as a teenager was at the Chrysler Museum. An artist herself, she majored in textiles at Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) in New York City.

She continues to work on her art at the Boca Museum Art School.

Donna Schneier & Jody Grass Talk Collecting

When did you start collecting?

I have always collected something. As a little girl, my mother took me to art fairs, galleries, and museums. One day, at age 5 or 6, I saw a painting I couldn’t stop thinking about. My mother bought it for me.

What do you collect today?

Paintings, lots of art jewelry and scarves.

Where do you keep them?

Walls for the paintings. Fortunately I have lots of closets and drawers which I open frequently to examine the objects. They continue to evoke the same wondrous feelings
I felt upon encountering them. They bring back wonderful memories.

Do you have a favorite work?

No. Like my children, they are all my favorites.

What would you like to tell me about collecting?

As a teenager, wandering in and out of galleries, I learned to trust my instincts. Many years ago I saw a painting by Pat Steir which I was drawn to. I dreamt about it. I couldn’t stop thinking about it but it was not for sale.

Many years later, I received a call from the gallery. The painting was now for sale. I bought it. I never thought about investment value although I have often been happily surprised about the current value of some of the work in my collection.

(Jody’s instincts are well trained. Those with little experience might want to take an Art History 101 course or consult an art advisor.)

Where do you find the work you collect?

Art fairs, galleries, and museums. My exposure through the Boca Museum has has opened my eyes to many collecting doors, especially for local artists.

Do you now collect anything other than what you historically collected?

Ceramics, glass, in particular holograms.

Thank you, Jody.

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