Robert Scull papers, 1955-circa 1984, bulk dates 1965-1970
Scull, Robert C., 1917-1986
De Maria, Walter
Di Suvero, Mark
Place of publication, production, or execution:
2.0 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 Robert Scull papers measure 2 linear feet and date from 1955 to circa 1984, with the bulk of the material dating from 1965 to 1970. Throughout the 1960s, Robert Scull was a wealthy and prominent art collector of Abstract, Pop, and Minimalist art whose collection included works by Michael Heizer, Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, and Andy Warhol, among others. His papers include fourteen annotated appointment books, correspondence, financial and legal records, printed material, and photographs.
Fourteen appointment books include business dates, notes, and occasional sketches. Notes are on various subjects such as prices for paintings, appointments with art dealers, and visits with artists Mark di Suvero, Michael Heizer, Lucas Samaras, and others. There are sometimes items, i.e., business cards and receipts, interleaved between the pages of the books.
The bulk of the correspondence consists of letters to Robert Scull from various artists, such as Walter De Maria and Michael Heizer. There is limited correspondence with museums and galleries.
Financial and legal records mostly consist of invoices from art dealers to Robert Scull for his purchases of John Tweddle's artwork. Also included are art loan forms and charts tracking payments for various paintings and drawings. There are scattered legal papers on a settlement regarding payments for a group of paintings by Tweddle.
There is one exhibition catalog, "Street Painters: Feelism" (circa 1982), of printed material.
Photographs are of Robert Scull, friends, art dealers, artists, and art. Notable artists depicted include Alexander Calder, Gary Kuehn, Claes Oldenberg, Robert Rauschenberg, Andy Warhol, and many others. There are also images of sculptures, paintings, and other artwork by various artists.
Robert Scull papers, 1955-circa 1984, bulk dates 1965-1970. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
The bulk of the collection was digitized in 2016 and is available on the Archives of American Art's website. Materials which have not been scanned include blank pages, blank versos of photographs, and duplicates.
Funding for the processing and digitization of this collection was provided by the Roy Lichtenstein Foundation, The Walton Family Foundation, and the Terra Foundation for American Art.
The Archives of American Art also has an oral history interview with Robert Scull conducted by Paul Cummings in 1972.
Robert Scull (1917-1986) was a prominent New York City and Connecticut collector of contemporary American art primarily during the 1960s.
The 14 appointment books in the collection were donated in 1999 by Amy Newman, a writer, who received them from her friend, artist Chuck Close. Close received them from his brother-in-law, who found them in the trash, turned them over to Close, who, in turn, gave them to Newman. The rest of the papers were donated in 1993 by Robert Scull's widow, Stephanie.
This site provides access to the papers of Robert C. Scull in the Archives of American Art that were digitized in 2017, and total 2,106 images.
Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 750 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001