Joop Bollen donated several Egyptian works of art to the Carlos

Museum Lovers Invest in the Carlos

Collector and friend Joop Bollen has generously donated several important Egyptian works of art to the Michael C. Carlos Museum, including a Middle Kingdom wooden sarcophagus and a large19th Dynasty limestone relief slab called a stela. Bollen is one of many benefactors who helped the Carlos Museum nearly $34 million during Campaign Emory, and the museum continues to seek assistance in continuing its work at Emory and in the community. Top priorities for philanthropy at Carlos Museum include support for expansion and renovation and increasing the museum’s endowment.

“We are fortunate to have so many dedicated donors and patrons who believe in our work. We could not sustain the Carlos Museum’s level of excellence without their support. ” says Bonnie Speed, director of the Carlos Museum.

Bollen, a businessman based in South Dakota, is a longtime collector whose interest in antiquities led him to a close association with Peter Lacovara, senior curator of Egyptian, Nubian, and Near Eastern Art at the Carlos Museum.

“When you are collecting antiquities, you have to be knowledgeable. Peter’s advice gave me the confidence I needed to be able to identify authentic artifacts,” Bollen says. “When someone gives you good advice and does it in such an altruistic way, it makes you want to do something for them.”

As he builds his collection, Bollen says he encounters pieces he realizes are destined for amuseum. His recent gift of a large Egyptian mummy mask from the Late New Kingdom period is a rare find of ancient Egyptian funerary art.

“The only other examples in the country are in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York,” Lacovara says. “Made of fragile cartonnage, a paper mache-like material made of papyrus and linen, it is a miracle the mask has survived in such wonderful condition.”

Because of its beauty and rarity, Bollen knew the cartonnage mask belonged in a museum where others could learn from it. “Peter is such an asset to the university, it seemed like a meaningful way to show my gratitude to him,” says Bollen.

Carlos supporters find the museum a unique resource both to Emory and the community and are committed to supporting the museum and strengthening the museum’s collections, education programs, and conservation work.

Like Bollen, some patrons make direct gifts of art to the Carlos to support collections. Among the donations made by James and Elizabeth Ferrell of Kansas City are two bronze disks and a glazed vase, while museum member Louise Gunn donated a Hellenistic marble statue of a draped female to enhance the museum’s Greek and Roman collection.

Adjunct Clinical Professor of Pediatrics Stanley Cohen and Jamie Cohen have invested in the African collection to help the museum share the art and culture of Africa with all audiences. Walter Melion, chair of Art History Department at Emory, and John Clum are making an estate gift to strengthen the Works on Paper and Art of the Americas collections.

Others provide philanthropic gifts that allow the museum to acquire important artifacts to strengthen its collections.

Longtime supporter Anne Cox Chambers has generously given funds to grow the Carlos Museum’s Egyptian and Ancient Near Eastern collections, enabling the purchase of a number of rare artifacts.

Emory alum and Carlos Museum board member Eleanor Ridley volunteers in the museum’s conservation lab once a week and has been a museum donor for more than 30 years. She and herlate husband established the Eleanor and Clarence Ridley Endowment Fund to support conservation, education, and exhibitions at the museum.

Carlos Museum board member Joan Sammons has established the Family of Ted and Joan Sammons Endowment Fund for Exhibitions and Exhibition Design, while fellow board member Bill Zewadski 66C is supporting the museum with an estate gift to strengthen the collection of Greek and Roman artifacts.

Along with these and many other investments in the Carlos Museum, donors are providing critical funding for all of the museum’s programs.

To learn how you can support the Carlos Museum, please contact Gail Habif at 404.727.2251 or


Michael C. Carlos Museum Volunteer Campaign Chairs: 

Courtlandt B. Ault and James H. Morgens