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The papers of Massachusetts painter, sculptor, and educator David Berger measure 3.8 linear feet and date from circa 1939 to 1986. His career as an artist and professor are documented through biographical material, personal business records, scattered correspondence, gallery files, exhibition catalogs, news clippings, and other printed material, as well as nine sketchbooks and photographs depicting Berger, his family, and artwork.
Biographical material consists of Veterans Administration records, interview transcripts, student records, diplomas, and documents from the memorial service held for Berger in 1966. Personal business records include of his employment records, scattered financial documents, and files documenting his submissions for juried art exhibitions. Also found here are inventory and sales records for Berger's artwork and documentation on the construction of Berger's house and studio in the late 1950s, designed by architect Marvin E. Goody.
Correspondence is with art galleries, professional organizations, publishers, Cranbrook Academy of Art, and individuals who purchased works by Berger. These letters primarily concern the sale and exhibition of David Berger's artwork as well as his education and teaching career. Gallery files include correspondence, price lists, artwork sales and loan records, exhibition planning documents, notes, and gallery publications.
Printed material consists of news clippings documenting David Berger's career, catalogs and announcements for exhibitions of works by Berger and others, as well as publications from Massachusetts College of Art and Cranbrook Academy of Art. One children's book includes illustrations by David Berger. Photographs depict Berger at art exhibitions and with his wife and daughters at home and in his studio. Also found are numerous photographs of his artwork. Nine sketchbooks contain various figure studies in pencil, ink, pastel, and charcoal.
Many of these files in this collection were maintained by Berger's wife, Ruth, after his death in 1966 and include her correspondence and notes.
David Berger papers, circa 1939-1986. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
David Berger (1920-1966) was a painter, sculptor, and educator from Boston, Mass.
Donated in 2010 by the Estate of David Berger via his widow Ruth Berger and daughters Ellen Berger Rainville and Elizabeth Berger Barraza.
Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 750 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001