A curator’s favorite piece in the collection is often the most recent addition. A perfect example of this is this newly-arrived folding screen created by the influential and enigmatic St. Paul art couple Clara Mairs (1878 – 1963) and Clement Haupers (1900 – 1982). Painted in 1937 and signed only by Mairs, the four-panel screen depicts several species of waterfowl from hooded mergansers and mallards to wood ducks and a loon. It was a gift from Clara and Clem to her brother, Samuel Mairs, an avid hunter and outdoorsman who hunted regularly on Lake Christina near Alexandria, Minnesota.
A gift to the Historical Society from Clara’s nephew Thomas Mairs and his children, it is an especially welcomed addition to the collection—a unique and functional work of art!
Brian Szott, Curator of Art