Arts & Life
Chop Suey by Edward Hopper
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Chop Suey by Edward Hopper

Oh phooey! SAM won't be getting 'Chop Suey'

In 2007, arts patron Barney Ebsworth told Seattle Art Museum he would give the museum an Edward Hopper painting he owned.

The painting was just one artwork in a larger, promised gift to the museum where Ebsworth had served as a trustee.

“Chop Suey,” a moody rendering of two women in a restaurant, is now worth an estimated $70 million.

But the painting is not going to SAM. According to Christie’s auction house, more than 85 artworks, including “Chop Suey” will go on the market in November.

Christie’s says Ebsworth, who died in April, left the balance of his collection to his family who are putting it up for sale. The auction house values this collection at more than $300 million.

In a statement, SAM Director Kimerly Rorschach praised Ebsworth’s generosity to the institution, but declined to comment on the Hopper painting.

Many Seattleites may have passed by Ebsworth’s most visible gift to the art museum: Jaume Plensa’s sculpture “Echo,” a large white head which sits in the Olympic Sculpture Park, facing west toward Elliott Bay and the Olympic Mountain range.