OFFICE OF THE CHANCELLOR
10545 Main Street, Clarence, N.Y. 14031 (U.S.A.)
(716) 759-6078 FAX (716) 759-7925
To the Director
Volksbank Rhein-Wupper eG
Leverkusen, G e r m a n y
Ladies and Gentlemen,
esteemed Frau Christiane Herzog!
The Order of Alexander the Great for Art and Science sends our congratulations on the occasion of the grand opening of the Exhibition "Beflügelnd helfen", organized to support the important work of the Mukoviszidose-Stiftung.
We appreciate the engagement of Frau Christiane Herzog to help her fellow men and women who suffer from this illness. As we know from history, most illnesses can eventually be cured. But the cure will not just happen by itself: it will take a determined effort by doctors and medical researchers, to use new ways of looking at the problem at hand and finding a new solution.
Let me give you an example; the Vice Grandmaster of the Alexander-Order, Dr. Wilson Greatbatch, is the inventor of the implantable heart pacemaker. By education, he was not a doctor -- he was an electrical engineer. In his young days, he knew of people who were ill with irregular heart-beat. Being an engineer, he understood how the heart works, and he knew that he could find a way to help these people. So he worked on his research in an old barn behind his house, with his own savings -- there was no big company financing his research. He had to overcome many technical and medical problems and complications, but we all know the happy end. Finally, his implantable pacemaker worked and since that time, this invention has saved and prolonged the lives of millions of people worldwide.
With this little story I like to encourage the young medical researchers in Germany to continue their research to find a cure for mukoviszidose; with persistence, they will one day succeed.
But for their work, money is also required, and in this respect we value the engagement of Frau Christiane Herzog and the Leverkusener sculptor Kurt Arentz, who offered his artistic talents to support this good cause.
Ladies and gentlemen:
at this exhibition you will get to see and enjoy some of his most famous portait-bust of the leading personalities in Europe and America, as well as some of his wonderful sculptures of bulls, horses and other wild animals. But Kurt Arentz is not only a great artist; he is also a great friend of America. His decades-long engagement to support friendly relations between Europe and America is valued by many of his friends and admirers.
Ronald Reagan and George Bush, both members of the Alexander-Order, know him well as the "Presidential Sculptor" and their bronze portraits from the hand of Kurt Arentz are in the collections of their Presidential Libraries in California and Texas. As guests of President Bush, my visit with Kurt Arentz and his wife Therese to the Grand Opening of the magnificent George Bush Presidential Library a year ago, combined with the presentation of his bronze portrait "First Lady Barbara Bush" will always remain in my memory as a unique and inspiring event.
Ladies and gentlemen: you have come here today to support a good cause. We also like to take a part in this worthwhile initiative by ordering one exemplaire of the graphic PEGASUS for our art collection.
We hope that you will enjoy this art exhibition and will get a chance to meet the and to talk to Kurt Arentz personally. As Salvador Dali once said, "It is not enough to like an artist; one must also possess some of his art!" Today, you have a chance to acquire a fine work of art - graphic or a sculpture -- and at the same time, support a good cause.
Thank you and God bless you.
Consul B. John Zavrel
Buffalo, New York
November 18, 1998
Copyright 1999 Museum of European Art