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Catalog Data

Creator:
Dwan Gallery  Search this
Names:
Dwan Gallery (Los Angeles, Calif.)  Search this
Dwan Gallery (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Anastasi, William, 1933-  Search this
Andre, Carl, 1935-  Search this
Arakawa, Shusaku, 1936-  Search this
Arman, 1928-2005  Search this
Dwan, Virginia  Search this
Flavin, Dan, 1933-  Search this
Goodnough, Robert, 1917-  Search this
Guston, Philip, 1913-1980  Search this
Kienholz, Edward, 1927-  Search this
Klein, Yves, 1928-1962  Search this
Kline, Franz, 1910-1962  Search this
LeWitt, Sol, 1928-2007  Search this
Mitchell, Joan, 1926-1992  Search this
Morris, Robert, 1931-  Search this
Oldenburg, Claes, 1929-  Search this
Parker, Raymond, 1922-  Search this
Rauschenberg, Robert, 1925-  Search this
Raysse, Martial, 1936-  Search this
Reinhardt, Ad, 1913-1967  Search this
Richenburg, Robert  Search this
Rivers, Larry, 1925-  Search this
Saint-Phalle, Niki de, 1930-  Search this
Scarpitta, Salvatore, 1919-  Search this
Smithson, Robert  Search this
Snelson, Kenneth, 1927-  Search this
Weber, John, 1932-2008  Search this
Extent:
2.3 Linear feet
Type:
Archival materials
Collection descriptions
Photographs
Slides (photographs)
Date:
1959-circa 1982
bulk 1959-1971
Summary:
The Dwan Gallery records measure 2.3 linear feet and consist primarily of files of exhibitions curated by Virginia Dwan at Dwan Galleries in Los Angeles (1959-1967) and New York (1965-1971). Found within this nearly comprehensive set of exhibition files may be lists of exhibited works, price lists, photographs, slides or color transparencies of installations, invitations, full-size posters, magazine and newspaper clippings and exhibition catalogs.
Scope and Contents:
The Dwan Gallery records measure 2.3 linear feet and consist primarily of files of exhibitions curated by Virginia Dwan at Dwan Galleries in Los Angeles (1959-1967) and New York (1965-1971). Found within this nearly comprehensive set of exhibition files may be lists of exhibited works, price lists, photographs, slides or color transparencies of installations, invitations, full-size posters, magazine and newspaper clippings and exhibition catalogs. Artists that held exhibitions at the Dwan Gallery in New York and Los Angeles include: Robert Goodnough, Robert Richenburg, Larry Rivers, Philip Guston, Yves Klein, Salvatore Scarpitta, Arakawa, Martial Raysse, Ad Reinhardt, Arman, Franz Kline, Edward Kienholz, Claes Oldenburg, Niki de Sainte Phalle, Joan Mitchell, Robert Rauschenberg, Robert Morris, Dan Flavin, Raymond Parker, Kenneth Snelson, Carl Andre, Sol LeWitt, Robert Smithson, and Anastasi. Also, the exhibition files are nearly comprehensive and include: Language to be Looked at and/or Things to be Read annual series (1967-1970), Boxes (1964), Earth Works (1968), My Country 'tis of Thee (1962) and 10 (1967 and 1968). Many of the multiple artist shows were created and organized by gallery director John Weber and/or Virginia Dwan. Many of these exhibition files include full-sized posters and panoramic photos showing installations. Also found are records created by a consulting firm hired by the Dwan Gallery to inventory the exhibition files prior to donation to the Archives of American Art. These guides appear at the beginning of each series and outline a chronology of exhibitions held at each branch.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into two series: Series 1: Los Angeles Exhibition Files, 1959-1967, after 1981 (Box 1-2, 5, OV6, OV8; 1.3 linear feet) Series 2: New York Exhibition Files, 1965-1971, after 1982 (Box 2-4, OV7; 1.0 linear feet)
Biographical / Historical:
In 1959, Virginia Dwan opened her first gallery on 1091 Broxton Avenue in the Westwood Village neighborhood of Los Angeles, California. Her independent wealth allowed her to open a gallery without worrying about business and sales. Three years after opening, the Dwan Gallery moved into a new Westwood Village space especially designed to express the gallery's contemporary aesthetic. In 1965, Virginia Dwan moved to New York City and founded an east coast branch of the Dwan Gallery at 29 West 57th Street. Early exhibitions at the Dwan Gallery showed Abstract Expressionist artists and works of art from New York which Dwan consigned from other galleries. After traveling to New York and France, Virginia Dwan's interests and tastes manifested in exhibitions by 1961 with Yves Klein. Through Klein, Dwan made connections to other Nouveaux RĂ©alistes artists that the gallery featured in solo and group shows. Later exhibitions featured Land and Minimilist artists. Dwan recognized that many of her shows were not considered salable but continued to show the avant-garde. She saw the gallery as an opportunity to expose the public to different styles of art. Virginia Dwan maintained a close and personal relationship with many of her artists. She allowed large stipends to gallery artists and invited them to spend time at her home in Malibu, California. When working with artists concentrating on found objects, Dwan would accompany them on scavenger hunts and shopping trips. In the case of Robert Smithson and other Land Art artists, she traveled to offsite locations to visit works of art in progress. Dwan relied on her longtime gallery director, John Weber to interact with collectors as she preferred to maintain her connection with the artists. The Dwan Gallery Los Angeles closed in mid-1967 but the New York branch remained open. By 1971, Virginia Dwan felt pressure to support her thirteen artists through a period of economic insecurity. She decided to close the gallery secretly and only informed her artists at the last minute. The final exhibition at Dwan Gallery New York closed in June of 1971.
Related Materials:
Also found within the Archives of American Art is an interview with Virginia Dwan conducted March 21 through June 1, 1984 by Charles Stuckey.
Separated Materials:
Dwan Gallery exhibition catalogs that were donated to the Archives in 1989 were transferred to the Smithsonian Institution American Art and National Portrait Gallery Library. Bard College's Center for Curatorial Studies and Art in Contemporary Culture holds Dwan Gallery materials related to exhibitions in the Library and Archives.
Provenance:
The Dwan Gallery records were donated in 1996 by Virginia Dwan, the former owner of the gallery.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Rights:
The Dwan Gallery records are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Topic:
Art -- New York (State) -- New York -- Exhibitions  Search this
Art -- California -- Los Angeles -- Exhibitions  Search this
Art galleries, Commercial -- California -- Los Angeles  Search this
Earthworks (Art)  Search this
Minimal art  Search this
Art galleries, Commercial -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Abstract expressionism  Search this
Artists -- United States  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Slides (photographs)
Citation:
Dwan Gallery records, 1959-circa 1982, bulk 1959-1971. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.dwangall
See more items in:
Dwan Gallery records
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-dwangall