RAYMOND D. NASHER, 85 Banker, arts patron
Raymond D. Nasher, an arts patron who helped establish museums in Texas and North Carolina and made a fortune in banking and real estate, died Friday at a Dallas hospital.
Mr. Nasher and his wife, Patsy, amassed what one expert described as the "world's greatest private collection of modern and contemporary sculpture." The real estate developer was also considered a pioneer in placing sculptures in commercial retail complexes.
The Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas, which opened in 2003, includes pieces by Willem de Kooning, Paul Gauguin and Pablo Picasso. In 2005, the Nasher Museum of Art opened at Duke University, his alma mater. Mr. Nasher donated $10 million to fund construction of the $23 million museum and loaned it his private collection for its exhibits. On display were Andy Warhol portraits of his wife and their three daughters - Andrea, Joanie and Nancy - that had previously hung in the hallway outside the Nashers' bedroom.
Mr. Nasher served on the President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities under the last three presidents. During Lyndon B. Johnson's administration, Mr. Nasher served as a delegate to the General Assembly of the United Nations. Since 1995 he had served on the Council on Foreign Relations. NATALIE BODANYA, 98 Singer at Met, in nightclubs
Natalie Bodanya, a soprano with the Metropolitan Opera in the 1930s who also performed popular music in nightclubs and on radio, died March 4 of natural causes in Santa Barbara, Calif.
She was born Natalie Bodanskaya in New York City, where her mother was a garment worker. She grew up in a tenement, but her talent caught the attention of Met soprano Marcella Sembrich, who helped her obtain a scholarship to the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia.
After graduating, she won a spot with the Met and debuted in 1936 as the jilted lover Micaela in a production of Carmen. She appeared in many other Met productions.
She and her family moved to Santa Barbara in the 1960s, and she began teaching music seminars around the country for the Association of American Colleges.