Gee and Union director to arm wrestle over disputed painting
Published: Wednesday, March 3, 2010
Updated: Saturday, June 16, 2012 00:06
It will be a battle of the bicep between two of the university's top administrators, and it all started over a painting.
On Friday, Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee and Tracy Stuck, director of the Ohio Union, will compete in an arm wrestling match to find out who gets to keep a coveted painting by Alice Schille.
"I officially ‘challenged' Dr. Gee a little over a year ago," Stuck said. "I can assure you that I've been on a rigorous training regimen with the help of the RPAC staff."
The painting previously adorned the former Ohio Union, but when that building was cleared out two years ago in preparation of the new $118 million Union, Gee installed the artwork in his home.
"I am not one to back down from a challenge," Gee said, "and the painting really is one of my favorites."
If Gee wins, the painting stays at his house. If Stuck wins, it will go to the new Union, where Stuck has already reserved a specific space for the painting.
The painting in question is "Children at the Beach," a piece painted in 1911 by Schille, who attended the Columbus Art School, now the Columbus College of Art and Design. No matter who wins, the painting will be retained as property of the university.
Schille is noted as one of the foremost female watercolor painters.
After her education in Columbus, she launched a career that took her from Columbus to Paris and around the world in search of inspiration for her works.
Schille passed away in 1955 at the age of 86.
The match will be held at 10:30 Friday a.m. at the RPAC and is open to the public.