Eldzier Cortor papers, circa 1930s-2009, bulk, 1972-2009
Cortor, Eldzier, 1916-2015
Bridaham, Lester Burbank
Collier, Leontine L.
Driskell, David C.
Harrigan, Violetta C.
Art Institute of Chicago
Michael Rosenfeld Gallery
Museum of Contemporary Art (Chicago, Ill.)
National African American Museum (U.S.)
Studio Museum in Harlem
Sylvan Cole Gallery
Place of publication, production, or execution:
5.2 linear feet
Access Note / Rights:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center.
The papers of painter and printmaker Eldzier Cortor measure 1.1 linear feet and date from circa 1930s-2009, with the bulk of the papers dating from 1972-2009. The papers contain biographical material, letters, subject files, exhibition files, writings, printed material, photographs, and artwork documenting Cortor's career as an artist.
Biographical material consists of awards from Carnegie Institute in 1947, Festival of Arts and Culture in 1977, and 3rd International Biennial Print Exhibit: 1987 ROC. Letters are from Cortor's family, friends and associates. Included are letters from Cortor's mother Ophelia, and his wife and sister. Those from his friends and associates include Acklyn Lynch, Leontine Collier, Violetta Harrigan, Halima Taha, David C. Driskell, and Carol Anderson. Letters from art institutions include Sylvan Cole Gallery, Anderson Gallery, and Kenkeleba House.
Subject files include correspondence, contracts, loan forms, purchase agreements, consignments and other documents, exhibition checklists, newspaper clippings, exhibition announcements, and photocopied images of photographs and artworks. This material relates to institutions such as the Art Institute of Chicago, David Anderson Gallery, Brooklyn Museum, Cosby Collection of Fine Arts, National Afro-American Museum, Michael Rosenfeld Gallery, and the Studio Museum in Harlem. Other notable subject files include Lester B. Bridaham and the Public School Mural Project.
Exhibition files consist of correspondence, printed material, newspaper and magazine clippings, statistics, photographs, inventories, exhibition announcements, writings, press releases, and loan agreements. The series is organized by institution, including Indiana University, Kenkeleba House, and Museum of Contemporary Art.
Writings consist of essays and articles about Eldzier Cortor. Printed material includes articles and clippings from publications and books, exhibition announcements and catalogs. Artwork includes ink and watercolor sketches from Cortor's student days at the Art Institute of Chicago. Photographs, undated, are primarily of Cortor's paintings, prints and drawings, as well as a several photographs of Cortor himself.
An addition of 4.0 linear feet donated 2016 includes biographical material, professional correspondence, source material, and printed material.
Eldzier Cortor papers, circa 1930s-2009, bulk, 1972-2009. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Archives of American Art microfilm reel N70-47 contains biographical material, correspondence, printed material, exhibition data, exhibition announcements and catalogs, photographs and sketchbooks that were loaned for filming by Eldzier Cortor in 1970. The only microfilmed items included in his 2009 gift are three photographs.
Eldzier Cortor (1916-2015) was a painter and printmaker in Chicago, Illinois and New York, New York.
The papers were donated to the Archives of American Art in 2009 by Eldzier Cortor and in 2016 by Michael Cortor, Eldzier's son.
Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 750 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001