The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York has acquired Peter Doig’s 2017 painting Two Trees as a gift from collector George Economou, who has appeared on the ARTnews “Top 200 Collectors” list each year since 2015. The museum said in a release that Economou gave the work in honor of the Met’s forthcoming 150th anniversary in 2020.
Economou bought Two Trees from Michael Werner Gallery in New York, where it had been on view in a 2017. The large painting, more than 11 feet long, features three figures near an ocean, with one of the subjects filming the other two using a camcorder. Doig has said that similar works recall his time in Trinidad, where he is now based.
The painting—which was the subject of lengthy discussion in Calvin Tomkins’s profile of Doig for the New Yorker in 2017—is one of three works by the artist now owned by the Met.
In a statement, Sheena Wagstaff, the chairman of the Met’s modern and contemporary art department, said, “Two Trees is a masterpiece, as well as a watershed work in the artist’s oeuvre. It poses provocative questions about modern life, even as it sits within a lineage of peers such as Goya or Munch, who also touched on the rawness of contemporary life with distinctive painterly invention and strange beauty.”