Oral history interview with Bernarda Bryson Shahn, 1983 April 29
Bryson, Bernarda, 1903-2004
Kirwin, Liza, 1957-
Artists' Union (New York, N.Y.)
John Reed Club
Place of publication, production, or execution:
Transcript: 37 pages
Originally recorded on 1 sound cassette. Reformatted in 2010 as 2 digital wav files. Duration is 1 hr., 26 min.
An interview of Bernarda Bryson conducted 1983 April 29, by Liza Kirwin, for the Archives of American Art.
Bryson speaks of her family background and education; writing for the Ohio State Journal; teaching etching and lithography; meeting Diego Rivera and Ben Shahn; the formation of the Unemployed Artists Group and her role as secretary, 1933; the Gibson Committee, the John Reed Club, and the Artists' Union in New York City; founding Art Front magazine; pressure from the Communist Party; demonstrating at the Whitney Museum of American Art, 1934; lithography under Adrian Dornbush; assisting Ben Shahn; her work as an illustrator; and her painting since 1971.
Quotes and excerpts must be cited as follows: Oral history interview with Bernarda Bryson Shahn, 1983 April 29. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Funding for the digital preservation of this interview was provided by a grant from the Save America's Treasures Program of the National Park Service.
Bernarda Bryson (1903-2004) was a printmaker and painter from Roosevelt, New Jersey. She is the widow of artist Ben Shahn.
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and others.
Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 750 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001