Eulogy for Mr. and Mrs. Price

Ms. Etsuko Price left us on the 19th of this month, less than four months after her beloved husband Mr. Joe Price passed away in April this year. They were known as the top collector of now very popular Edo period painter Ito Jyakuchu. It is said that Jyakuchu became this famous because of Prices.

It’s a well-known story that right after his graduation from University, Joe went to a Japanese Art Shop, Seo Store in NY city accompanying his father’s friend and architect Frank Lloyd Wright. He came across a brush painting of grapes and instantly fell in love. He abandoned his plan to buy Mercedes SL300 Gulf Wing and bought the artwork. Few years later, he went back to the store to buy Jyakuchu and was told that he already had one—–the grapes.

They opened a studio at their house where young Japanese and American can come and study his collection.

During our stay in DC, we became friends with them and visited each other. In 2012, the centennial year of Tidal Basin cherry blossom tree planting, there was a big exhibition of Jyakuchu where a quarter of one million people visited in a month. In 2013, two years after Great Disaster of Tohoku, the couple decided to bring most important works of his collection to devastated area Iwate, Miyagi, and Fukushima. This was when many foreign artists cancelled visits to the area or to Japan from fear of nuclear contamination. Prices were grateful to Japan and this was intended to encourage and give hope to people. In 2017, the AJS designated Joe as the first recipient of the special prize of Kaneko Kentaro Award, the award given to individuals who privately contributed greatly to relations between the two countries. Joe had the special eyes for art. But it was Etsuko who managed his collection and supported his activities. They were inseparable partners. We all will miss this great friend of our two countries so much.

President、 Ichiro Fujisaki







会長 藤崎一郎