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Philanthropist Peter Norton donates art to Rose Museum

Kamrooz Aram, “Untitled (Three Trees),” 2004. handout

Peter Norton, the millionaire computer programmer and software publisher, has donated dozens of works by some of the most respected contemporary artists to the Rose Art Museum at Brandeis University, museum director Christopher Bedford announced Monday. The 41 works drawn from Norton’s personal collection are part of a series of gifts he’s making to university museums and teaching museums around the country. (Williams College Museum of Art is among the dozen or so other institutions benefiting from Norton’s largesse.) “This is a historic addition to our collection that will significantly enhance our ability to actively engage students and diverse audiences with our collection at the Rose,” Bedford said in a statement. “This gift represents what Peter Norton’s collection is best known for — work that challenges definitions of racial and sexual identity and pushes the boundaries between media and genres.” The gift includes video, photography, painting, prints, sculpture, and mixed media works by Robert Gober, Christian Marclay, Damien Ortega, Kara Walker, Doug Aitken, Kamrooz Aram, Omer Fast, Glendive Foley, Jason Rhoades, Luca Bovoli, Dorothy Cross, E. V. Day, Mark Dion, Nicole Eisenman, Vincent Fecteau, Tom Friedman, and Anna Gaskell, among many other artists. Norton — of Norton AntiVirus renown — lives with his wife, Gwen Adams, on Martha’s Vineyard, in a Queen Anne-style home overlooking Ocean Park in Oak Bluffs. Pictured at left are Aram’s “Untitled (Three Trees)’’ and Dion’s “Treasure Chest (New Bedford Harbor).’’