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Oral history interview with Alison Knowles, 2010 June 1-2

view Oral history interview with Alison Knowles, 2010 June 1-2 digital asset number 1
Interviewee:
Knowles, Alison, 1933-
Interviewer:
Richards, Judith Olch, 1947-
Subject:
Albers, Josef
Brecht, George
Cage, John
Chicago, Judy
De Kooning, Willem
Duchamp, Marcel
Gordon, Coco
Gottlieb, Adolph
Hamilton, Richard
Hendricks, Jon
Higgins, Dick
Johnson, Ray
Jones, Joe
Kaprow, Allan
Kuehn, Kathy
Lauf, Cornelia
Lindner, Richard
Mac Low, Jackson
Maciunas, George
Moorman, Charlotte
Ono, Yoko
Paik, Nam June
Pollock, Jackson
Rauschenberg, Robert
Saito, Takako
Schapiro, Miriam
Schneemann, Carolee
Schöning, Klaus
Shiomi, Mieko
Silverman, Gilbert
Spoerri, Daniel
Teitelbaum, Richard
Tenney, James
WaÔsko, Ryszard
California Institute of the Arts
Elizabeth Murray Oral History of Women in the Visual Arts Project
Middlebury College
Pratt Institute.Art School
Place of publication, production, or execution:
New York (State)
Physical Description:
Transcript: 86 pages.
General Note:
Originally recorded on 5 mini discs. Duration is 5 hr., 45 min.
Summary:
An interview of Alison Knowles conducted 2010 June 1-2, by Judith Olch Richards, for the Archives of American Art's Elizabeth Murray Oral History of Women in the Visual Arts Project, at Knowles' home and studio, in New York, N.Y.
Knowles speaks of her family background; her father's (an English professor) influence on her education; her love of nature and isolation as a young girl; her French studies at Middlebury College; her transfer to Pratt Institute to study art; the social and academic environment at Pratt; her inclinations towards abstraction; her first marriage to Jim Ericson; her first studio at 423 Broadway; her early jobs as a commercial artist; her first gallery show at Nonagon, in 1958, and how she subsequently burned the paintings in that show; her second marriage to Dick Higgins in 1960; her Judson Gallery Show in 1962 and how she subsequently discarded those works; her involvement in the Fluxus group; her involvement with the "Cage class," and its early performances; her collaboration with John Cage on the book, "Notations" (1968); her collaboration with Marcel Duchamp on a print (1967); the circumstances surrounding her performance piece, "Make a Salad" (1962), her travels through Europe with Higgins; the birth of her twins; her computerized poetic piece and installation, "House of Dust" (1967) and how it was later vandalized; her move to Los Angeles to teach at CalArts; the rebuilding of "House of Dust" at CalArts; her move back to New York; the processes leading up to several projects and collaborations including "Loose Pages," "Big Book," "Bread and Water," and more; where she finds her inspiration; her thoughts on performance art; her studio environment in Barrytown, N.Y.; the influence and support of Germany on her work and Fluxus in general; her recent work, including "Identical Lunch"; and current challenges she faces as an artist.
She recalls Richard Lindner, Adolph Gottlieb, Willem de Kooning, Jackson Pollock, Judy Chicago, Josef Albers, Dorothy Podber, Ray Johnson, Dick Higgins, Robert Rauschenberg, John Cage, Klaus Schöning, Jon Hendricks, Gilbert Silverman, George Maciunas, George Brecht, Jack Mac Low, Yoko Ono, Mieko Shiomi, Takako Saito, Joe Jones, Marcel Duchamp, Daniel Spoerri, Richard Hamilton, Nam June Paik, Charlotte Moorman, Helmut Becker, Coco Gordon, Jim Tenney, Cornelia Lauf, Rirkrit Tirvanija, Allan Kaprow, Simone Forte, Carolee Schneemann, Richard Teitelbaum, Miriam Schapiro, Miguel Abrau, James Fuentes, Cyrilla Wozenter, Kathy Kuehn, Ryszard Wasko.
Citation:
Quotes and excerpts must be cited as follows: Oral history interview with Alison Knowles, 2010 June 1-2. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Funding:
This interview is part of the Elizabeth Murray Oral History of Women in the Visual Arts Project, funded by the A G Foundation.
Biography Note:
Alison Knowles (1933- ) is an artist and a founding member of Fluxus in New York, N.Y. Judith Olch Richards (1947- ) is a former director of iCI in New York, N.Y.
Provenance:
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 administrators.
Location Note:
Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 750 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001
Topic:
Artists' studios
Fluxus (Group of artists)
Interviews
Performance art
Sound recordings
Women artists
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)15822
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)290220
AAA_collcode_knowle10
Theme:
Women
Data Source:
Archives of American Art

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