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Thomas M. Messer papers

Creator:
Messer, Thomas M.  Search this
Names:
Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation  Search this
Bacon, Francis, 1909-1992  Search this
Barnet, Will, 1911-2012  Search this
Bell, Larry, 1939-  Search this
Burri, Alberto, 1915-  Search this
Bury, Pol, 1922-2005  Search this
Chagall, Marc, 1887-  Search this
Chryssa, 1933-  Search this
Dubuffet, Jean, 1901-  Search this
Ernst, Max, 1891-1976  Search this
Flavin, Dan, 1933-  Search this
Frankenthaler, Helen, 1928-2011  Search this
Giacometti, Alberto, 1901-1966  Search this
Hamilton, Richard, 1922-  Search this
Hélion, Jean, 1904-1987  Search this
Knowlton, Grace, 1932-  Search this
Koczy, Rosemarie, 1939-2007  Search this
Kolář, Jiří, 1914-2002  Search this
Kuh, Katharine  Search this
Martin, Agnes, 1912-2004  Search this
Moore, Henry, 1898-1986  Search this
Rickey, George  Search this
Simonds, Charles, 1945-  Search this
Still, Clyfford, 1904-1980  Search this
Tworkov, Jack  Search this
Extent:
4.6 Linear Feet
Type:
Archival materials
Collection descriptions
Transcripts
Diaries
Date:
1949-2010
Summary:
The papers of New York museum director and independent curator Thomas M. Messer measure 4.6 linear feet and date from 1949-2010. Material includes correspondence, a diary transcript, and printed material that reflect Messer's long career, primarily as director of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation. Correspondence comprises the bulk of the collection and documents the relationships he built with artists, art historians, curators, and others colleagues. Notable correspondents include Francis Bacon, Will Barnet, Larry Bell, Alberto Burri, Pol Bury, Marc Chagall, Chryssa, Jean Dubuffet, Max Ernst, Dan Flavin, Helen Frankenthaler, Alberto Giacometti, Richard Hamilton, Jean Hélion, Grace Knowlton, Rosemarie Koczy, Jirí Kolár, Katharine Kuh, Agnes Martin, Henry Moore, George Rickey, Charles Simonds, Clyfford Still, Jack Tworkov, and many others.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of New York museum director and independent curator Thomas M. Messer measure 4.6 linear feet and date from 1949-2010. Material includes correspondence, a diary transcript, and printed material that reflect Messer's long career, primarily as director of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation. Correspondence comprises the bulk of the collection and documents the relationships he built with artists, art historians, curators, and others colleagues. Notable correspondents include Francis Bacon, Will Barnet, Larry Bell, Alberto Burri, Pol Bury, Marc Chagall, Chryssa, Jean Dubuffet, Max Ernst, Dan Flavin, Helen Frankenthaler, Alberto Giacometti, Richard Hamilton, Jean Hélion, Grace Knowlton, Rosemarie Koczy, Jirí Kolár, Katharine Kuh, Agnes Martin, Henry Moore, George Rickey, Charles Simonds, Clyfford Still, Jack Tworkov, and many others.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as three series

Series 1: Correspondence, 1962-2010 (4 linear feet; Box 1-4)

Series 2: Diary Transcript, 2007-2009 (0.02 gigabytes; ER01)

Series 3: Printed Material, 1949-1987 (0.6 linear feet; Box 5-6)
Biographical / Historical:
Thomas Messer (1920-2013) was a museum director and independent curator in New York, New York. Born and raised in Czechoslovakia, Messer became a United States citizen in 1944 and served in the United States Army in World War II. He earned his bachelor's degree from Boston University and studied at the Sorbonne in France before returning to the United States to study art history and museology at Harvard University. After obtaining his graduate degree, Messer was the director of the Roswell Museum in Roswell, New Mexico and then of the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston. In 1961, Messer became the director of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, which includes the Guggenheim Museum in New York and the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice, Italy. Messer retired from his position there in 1988 and became a freelance curator, teacher, writer, and arts consultant.
Related Materials:
Also found in the Archives of American Art are two oral history interviews with Thomas Messer conducted by Paul Cummings in 1970 and by Andrew Decker in 1994-1995.
Provenance:
Donated to the Archives of American Art in 1995 by Thomas Messer and in 2016 by the Thomas Messer estate via Adam Lehner, executor.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.

Use of electronic records requires advance notice.
Rights:
The Thomas M. Messer papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Occupation:
Art museum directors -- United States  Search this
Topic:
Curators -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Transcripts
Diaries
Citation:
Thomas M. Messer papers, 1949-2010. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.messthom
See more items in:
Thomas M. Messer papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-messthom

Tanager Gallery records

Creator:
Tanager Gallery  Search this
Names:
Arnold, Anne, 1926-  Search this
Brooks, James, 1906-1992  Search this
Burkhardt, Rudy  Search this
Cajori, Charles, 1921-  Search this
Cherry, Herman  Search this
Dodd, Lois, 1927-  Search this
Fine, Perle, 1908-1988  Search this
Frankenthaler, Helen, 1928-2011  Search this
Geist, Sidney  Search this
Guston, Philip, 1913-1980  Search this
Hazelet, Sally  Search this
Hofmann, Hans, 1880-1966  Search this
Ippolito, Angelo  Search this
Katz, Alex, 1927-  Search this
King, William, 1925-2015  Search this
Pearlstein, Philip, 1924-  Search this
Rauschenberg, Robert, 1925-2008  Search this
Rivers, Larry, 1925-2002  Search this
Stamos, Theodoros, 1922-1997  Search this
Wesselmann, Tom, 1931-2004  Search this
Extent:
2.6 Linear feet
Type:
Archival materials
Collection descriptions
Diaries
Scrapbooks
Photographs
Sketches
Date:
1952-1979
Summary:
The records of contemporary New York City Tanager Gallery measure 2.6 linear feet and date from 1952 to 1979. Found are administrative files, financial and legal records including detailed receipt books, scattered correspondence, artists' files for circa 70 artists that include price lists and biographies, two scrapbooks of printed materials, newsclippings, exhibition announcements and other printed materials, and five photographs of openings at the gallery and of the exterior of the building.
Scope and Content Note:
The records of contemporary New York City Tanager Gallery measure 2.6 linear feet and date from 1952 to 1979. Found are administrative files, financial and legal records including detailed receipt books, scattered correspondence, artists' files for circa 70 artists that include price lists and biographies, two scrapbooks of printed materials, newsclippings, exhibition announcements and other printed materials, and five photographs of openings at the gallery and of the exterior of the building.

Administrative files include four day books, lists of artists and exhibitions, historical sketches, and an address book. There are two ledger books of expenses for shows and four receipt books from 1959-1962 which are organized by date and list artist, and artwork, buyer, and price. Correspondence is arranged chronologically and comprised mainly of copies of letters sent by the Gallery to artists as invitations to exhibit. Also found are scattered letters from museums and artists.

There are artists' files for circa 70 artists that contain a variety of materials, including price lists and biographies or resumes. Artists files are found for Anne Arnold, James Brooks, Charles Cajori, Herman Cherry, Lois Dodd, Sally Hazelet Drummond, Perle Fine, Helen Frankenthaler, Sidney Geist, Philip Guston, Hans Hofmann, Angelo Ippolito, Philip Pealstein, Alex Katz, William King, Robert Rauschenberg, Larry Rivers, Theordore Stamos, and Tom Wesselmann among many others.

The collection includes two scrapbooks containing mostly newsclippings and exhibition announcements, as well as additional loose newsclippings, numerous exhibition announcements and catalogs, and press releases. There are five photographs of gallery openings and the exterior of the building, the latter taken by Rudy Burkhardt.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 7 series:

Series 1: Administrative Files, 1952-1979 (Boxes 1, 4; 0.5 linear feet)

Series 2: Financial and Legal Records, 1952-1962 (Box 1; 0.5 linear feet)

Series 3: Correspondence, 1952-1967 (Boxes 1-2; 0.3 linear feet)

Series 4: Artists Files, circa 1952- circa 1962 (Box 2; 0.1 linear feet)

Series 5: Scrapbooks, circa 1962 (Boxes 2-3; 0.3 linear feet)

Series 6: Printed Material, 1952-1971 (Boxes 2, 4; 0.3 linear feet)

Series 7: Photographs, circa 1952-circa 1959 (Box 2; 2 folders)
Historical Note:
The Tanager Gallery operated from 1952-1962 in New York City. The gallery was one of the first artist cooperative galleries formed on 10th Street in Manhattan to provide an alternative to the larger upscale galleries of Madison Avenue.

In 1952, the artist cooperative Tanager Gallery opened at 90 East 10th Street in Manhattan. Co-founders included Charles Cajori, Lois Dodd, Angelo Ippolito, William King, and Fred Mitchell. The Tanager offered open spaces for young artists to show their work and to sell art on their own terms. Membership at the Tanager included American Realists Alex Katz and Philip Pearlstein, and the Pop art/found-art collagist Tom Wesselmann. Later artists to join the cooperatiive included Mary Abbott, Perle Fine, Sidney Geist, Joseph Groell, Nanno de Groot, Sally Hazelet, Ben Isquith, Lester Johnson, Nicholas Marsicano, George Earl Ortman, Charlotte Park, Philip Pearlstein, Frank Stout, Raymond Rocklin, and Sal Sirugo. From 1952 to 1962, the Tanager Gallery exhibited works from about 250 artists.

The opening of Tanager and other 10th Street galleries was a radical change for the New York arts scene and for emerging New York artists who generally found representation with uptown gallery owners and/or art dealers on 57th Street or Madison Ave. In the 1950s, Manhattan's 10th Street was a gathering place for young artist-bohemians. The galleries were often the centers for anything avant-garde or new, such as art installations, happenings, poetry readings, jazz sessions, and performance art. For example, Tanager Gallery hosted a series of forums with local artists who would discuss their work and objectives.

Tanager Gallery received attention and respect from the more established art galleries and critics in New York, including Dore Ashton, Leo Castelli, Tom Hess, Martha Jackson, and Dorothy Miller. The Tanager Gallery closed in 1962.
Related Material:
Among the holdings of the Archives of American Art are the Lois Dodd papers, 1952-2001 and an oral history interview with Lois Dodd by Barbara Shikler from 1988.
Provenance:
Lois Dodd, co-founder of the Tanager Gallery, donated the Tanager Gallery records in several increments between 1972 and 1989.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Rights:
The Tanager Gallery records are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Topic:
Art, Abstract -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Art galleries, Commercial -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Diaries
Scrapbooks
Photographs
Sketches
Citation:
Tanager Gallery records, 1952-1979. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.tanagall
See more items in:
Tanager Gallery records
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-tanagall
Additional Online Media:

Bernard Harper Friedman papers

Creator:
Friedman, B. H. (Bernard Harper), 1926-2011  Search this
Names:
Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center  Search this
Whitney Museum of American Art  Search this
Asher, Elise, 1914-  Search this
Baur, John I. H. (John Ireland Howe), 1909-1987  Search this
Bertoia, Harry  Search this
Biddle, Flora Miller  Search this
Bluhm, Norman, 1921-1999  Search this
Brooks, James, 1906-1992  Search this
Bultman, Fritz, 1919-1985  Search this
Castelli, Leo  Search this
Copley, William Nelson, 1919-1996  Search this
Dine, Jim, 1935-  Search this
Frankenthaler, Helen, 1928-2011  Search this
Gill, Brendan, 1914-1997  Search this
Goodnough, Robert, 1917-  Search this
Gray, Cleve  Search this
Gray, Francine du Plessix  Search this
Hall, Joellen  Search this
Huebler, Douglas  Search this
Kanovitz, Howard  Search this
Knowlton, Grace, 1932-  Search this
Krasner, Lee, 1908-1984  Search this
Kunitz, Stanley, 1905-2006  Search this
Marca-Relli, Conrad, 1913-2000  Search this
Matter, Mercedes  Search this
McDarrah, Fred W., 1926-2007  Search this
McEwen, Rory, 1932-  Search this
Motherwell, Robert  Search this
Newman, Arnold, 1918-2006  Search this
Newman, Barnett, 1905-1970  Search this
Norman, Dorothy, 1905-1997  Search this
Ossorio, Alfonso, 1916-1990  Search this
Pollock, Jackson, 1912-1956  Search this
Richenburg, Robert  Search this
Rosset, Barney  Search this
Roth, Philip  Search this
Rothschild, Judith  Search this
Salvesen, Magda  Search this
Sandler, Irving, 1925-  Search this
Scarpitta, Salvatore, 1919-2007  Search this
Schueler, Jon, 1916-  Search this
Simon, Sidney, 1917-1997  Search this
Slivka, David, 1913-  Search this
Still, Clyfford, 1904-1980  Search this
Stout, Myron, 1908-1987  Search this
Interviewee:
Cage, John, 1912-1992  Search this
Correspondent:
Leary, Timothy Francis, 1920-  Search this
Extent:
30.6 Linear feet
Type:
Archival materials
Collection descriptions
Diaries
Transcripts
Sound recordings
Photographs
Scrapbooks
Date:
1926-2011
bulk 1943-2010
Summary:
The papers of writer, art critic and collector Bernard Harper Friedman, 1926-2011, bulk 1943-2010, measure 30.6 linear feet. Extensive professional and personal correspondence, 41 diaries, a large number of his published and unpublished writings, and subject files document Friedman's career as a writer, relationships with cultural institutions and art world figures, and his personal life. Also included are biographical materials, interviews, printed material, 5 scrapbooks and photographs.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of writer, art critic and collector Bernard Harper Friedman, 1926-2011, bulk 1943-2010, measure 30.6 linear feet. Extensive professional and personal correspondence, 41 diaries, a large number of his published and unpublished writings, and subject files document Friedman's career as a writer, relationships with cultural institutions and art world figures, and his personal life. Also included are biographical materials, interviews, 5 scrapbooks, and photographs.

Biographical materials include educational records, documentation of Friedman's World War II service in the U.S. Navy, and birth, marriage, and death certificates.

Correspondence is with friends, family, artists, art world figures and institutions, writers, publishers, and literary agents. Among the correspondents are: John I. H. Baur, Harry Bertoia, Flora Biddle, Norman Bluhm, James Brooks, Fritz Bultman, Leo Castelli, William N. Copley, Jim Dine, Helen Frankenthaler, Brendan Gill, Robert Goodnough, Cleve and Francine Gray, Howard Kanovitz, Grace Knowlton, Stanley Kunitz, Conrad Marca-Relli, Mercedes Matter, Fred W. McDarrah, Rory McEwen, Robert Motherwell, Arnold Newman, Barnett Newman, Dorothy Norman, Alfonso Ossorio, Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center, Robert Richenburg, Barney Rosset, Philip Roth, Judith Rothschild, Irving Sandler, Salvatore Scarpitta, Jon Schueler, Sidney Simon, David Slivka, Clyfford Still, Myron Stout, Calvin Tompkins, and David Windham.

There are transcripts of interviews with B. H. Friedman, his daughter and wife conducted by the Yale University School of Medicine's "Adult Development Study," and 2 recordings of interviews with Friedman for radio broadcast.

Writings by Friedman include manuscripts of novels, short stories, plays, articles, monographs, and art criticism, some published versions of his work, and a variety of notes. Also found are recordings of lectures by B. H. Friedman and panel discussions in which he participated. Other authors represented are John Cage, W. B. Henry, and Jon Schueler. Friedman's diaries, 1948-1993 (41 volumes) record activities, thoughts, and events.

Subject files compiled by Friedman reflect professional and personal interests, activities, and projects. Many concern publicity for published writings or efforts to find publishers. Especially well documented is his interest in Jackson Pollock, Timothy Leary, and Alfonso Ossorio, and his affiliation with the Whitney Museum of American Art.

The majority of printed material is about or mentions Friedman. Five scrapbooks consist mainly of printed material.

Most photographs are of B. H. and Abby Friedman, their family, and friends. Among the individuals pictured are: Elise Asher, Cary and Norman Bluhm, Sandy Friedman, Joellen Hall, Doug Huebler, Howard Kanowitz, Stanley Kunitz, Lee Krasner, Sheridan Lloyd, Barnett and Annalee Newman, Alfonso Ossorio, Magda Salvesen, Salvatore Scarpitta, John Schueler, and Myron Stout. A photograph album records scenes from a 1979 performance of Whispers, a stage adaptation by Alan Wynroth from Friedman's novel of the same title.
Arrangement:
This collection is arranged as 9 series:

Series 1: Biographical Materials, 1926-2011 (Box 1; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1946-2011 (Boxes 1-15; 14.7 linear feet)

Series 3: Interviews, 1969-2001 (Box 15; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 4: Writings, 1940s-2010 (Boxes 16-23; 8 linear feet)

Series 5: Diaries, 1948-1993 (Boxes 24-25; 1.75 linear feet)

Series 6: Subject Files, 1940-2010 (Boxes 25-30; 4.45 linear feet)

Series 7: Printed Material, 1954-2010 (Box 30-31; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 8: Scrapbooks, 1960-2006 (Boxes 30-32; 0.8 lilnear feet)

Series 9: Photographs, circa 1950s-2008 (Box 30; 0.4 linear feet)
Biographical / Historical:
Bernard Harper Friedman (1926-2011), a writer best known as the author of the first biography of Jackson Pollock, was also an art critic and art collector involved in the cultural life of New York City.

Bernard Harper Friedman, known professionally as B. H. Friedman, was called Bob by family and friends. After interrupting his studies at Cornell University to serve in the U.S. Navy during World War II, he graduated in 1948 with a degree in English. Friedman and his new bride, fellow student Abby G. Noselson (1926-2003), returned home to New York City and he began a real estate career in his uncles' firm, Uris Buildings Corporation. While a businessman, Friedman spent much of his spare time writing. He produced fiction, plays, and criticism; Friedman's articles on art, literature and music appeared in a wide variety of periodicals. During this period, Friedman also pursued his interests in jazz, collecting abstract art, and psychedelic drug experiences with Timothy Leary.

His first published novel, Circles, about the Abstract Expressionist milieu, appeared in 1962. A year later, B. H. Friedman became a full-time writer. For nearly 20 years, he divided his time between New York City and Provincetown, Massachusetts, where he was affiliated with the Fine Arts Work Center as a director and consultant. During this period, he published several novels and two biographies: Jackson Pollock: Energy Made Visible and Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, written with Flora Biddle. More novels and short story collections were published, and staged readings of seven plays were presented between 1987 and 2007. Tripping, a memoir of using psychedlics with Timothy Leary, appeared in 2006.

A founding member of Fiction Collective, a nonprofit publishing group run by and for writers, Friedman was also a member of several national writers' organizations. He served as a trustee of the Whitney Musuem of American Art, 1961-1968, and then as honorary trustee. B. H. Friedman died from complications of pneumonia on January 4, 2011 in New York City.
Related Materials:
Also available is an oral history interview with Bernard Harper Friedman, 1972 November 10, conducted by Paul Cummings for the Archives of American Art.
Provenance:
The Bernard Harper Friedman papers were donated to the Archives of American Art in 2012 by his daughter, Daisy Friedman.
Restrictions:
The collection is ACCESS RESTRICTED; written permission is required. Use of original materials requires an appointment. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
Rights:
The Bernard Harper Friedman papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. They may be used for research, study, and scholarship. Access requires written permission.
Topic:
Art critics -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Art -- Collectors and collecting -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Interviews  Search this
Authors -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Diaries
Transcripts
Sound recordings
Photographs
Scrapbooks
Citation:
Bernard Harper Friedman papers, 1926-2011, bulk 1943-2010. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.friebern
See more items in:
Bernard Harper Friedman papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-friebern

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