In his memoir, John wrote, “Collecting great art has been a passion in my family … My collector genes [are] inherited from all branches of my family.” John believes art is “a connector among peoples and nations, cultures and eras.” Because “art bridges worlds,” he tells us, he hung American art in the US ambassadorial residence in Denmark and hangs Danish art in his New York homes. He also loans his holdings to institutions for major exhibitions on a regular basis.
By his own account, John L. Loeb, Jr. has had “a lifelong affinity for fine art,” not only for its aesthetic value but because art is “a connector among people and nations, cultures and eras.” All branches of his family were art collectors. Their interests are reflected in the Lehman Wing of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Lewisohn Collection at the Brooklyn Museum, Loeb gifts to the Harvard Art Museums, and the Frances Lehman Loeb Museum at Vassar College.
After serving as US Ambassador to Denmark, John focused his collecting on Danish art. The Ambassador John L. Loeb Jr. Danish Art Collection is now the largest in the world outside of Danish museums.
Another deeply aesthetic part of John’s life is his beautiful homes: Ridgeleigh Estate in Purchase, NY; his townhouse on Manhattan’s Upper East Side; and his home on Eaton Square in London.
John Loeb’s Ridgeleigh Estate in Purchase, NY is where he grew up. He wrote, “Ridgeleigh is where I find deep peace and comfort. In fact, sometimes I wonder why I ever leave it.”
In 1961, John acquired a townhouse on East 61st Street in Manhattan. Built between 1874 and 1875 in what is now designated as the “Treadwell Farm Historic District,” John hired renowned decorator Sister Parish to give it “the English country-house look.”
In 1985, John added a flat on London’s Eaton Square to his collection of homes. The square has been “home” to fictional characters created by such authors as Henry James, Anthony Trollope and, more recently, Jeffrey Archer. Eaton Square was home to the fictional Bellamy family in the BBC drama series Upstairs, Downstairs.