William Kienbusch papers, 1915-2001, bulk 1936-1980
Kienbusch, William Austin, 1914-1980
Poor, Henry Varnum
Kraushaar, Antoinette M.
Maitland, Walter McClymonds
Place of publication, production, or execution:
5.0 linear feet
Access Note / Rights:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
The papers of landscape painter and art instructor William Kienbusch measure 5.0 linear feet and date from 1915 to 2001, with the bulk of the materials dating from 1936 to 1980. The collection documents Kienbusch's life as an artist in New York City and Cranberry Island, Maine. Files include biographical material; correspondence with family, friends, and colleagues; writings and notes; scattered printed material; photographs; and artwork, including 17 sketchbooks.
Biographical materials include military records, identification and membership documents, guestbooks, and an album entitled "Book of Friendship" containing short notes written by friends for Kienbusch on the occasion of his 60th birthday. Also of note is copy of the "In Memoriam" written for Kienbusch by Karl Schrag.
The bulk of the papers consist of family and general correspondence. Family correspondence includes letters from Kienbusch to his parents regarding school, summer camps, travel, and the army. General correspondence includes many letters he sent to his close friend, Stanley Clifford, as well as letters from friends and associates, such as Stuart Davis, Antionette Kraushaar, Walter Maitland, Henry Varnum Poor, Abraham Rattner, Karl Schrag, Reuben Tam, and others.
Writings and notes include scattered notes, lists, and draft writings, as well as three notebooks, including one on casein technique. Printed material includes several armed forces publications and maps from World War II, clippings, and press releases. Photographs are of William Kienbusch, including two snapshots of Kienbusch with friends Dorothy Andrews and Reuben Tam. Also found are numerous travel and nature photographs. Artwork includes drawings created by Kienbusch while on his military tour in Guam and seventeen sketchbooks containting drawings in pencil, ink, and pastel.
William Kienbusch papers, 1915-2001, bulk 1936-1980. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Location of Originals:
Reel N70-22: Originals returned to William Kienbusch after microfilming.
William Kienbusch loaned materials for microfiliming in 1970. Originals of loaned material, including a scrapbook of clippings, exhibition catalogs, photographs of Kienbusch, letters, writings, and two journals describing his travels in Europe and the Orient were returned to Kienbusch after microfilming and were not subsequently donated by his estate. Loaned material is available on reel N70-22 but is not described in the container listing of this finding aid.
Also found in the Archives of American Art is the Walter Maitland correspondence with and about William Kienbusch, 1969-1981; the William Kienbusch letters to Francis and Sydney Hamabe, 1958-1977; the Thomas Barrett and Leni Mancuso papers relating to William Kienbusch, 1950-1980; and an oral history interview with William Kienbusch conducted by Forrest Selvig, November 1-7, 1968.
William Austin Kienbusch (1914-1980) was a painter and art instructor in New York, N.Y. Kienbusch received a B.A. from Princeton in 1936 and attended the Art Students League the following year, where he studied under Henry Varnum Poor, Abraham Rattner, and Stuart Davis. He taught camouflage to soldiers during World War II and was later on the faculty of the Brooklyn Museum Art School.
The William Kienbusch papers were donated by his sisters, Millicent Kelly and Juliana Little, and his friend Stanley Clifford as co-executives of the Kienbusch estate from 1985-1991. Additional papers were donated by Stanley Clifford in 2008 and 2010.
Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 750 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001