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Catalog Data

Creator:
Saarinen, Aline B. (Aline Bernstein), 1914-1972  Search this
Names:
Saarinen, Eero, 1910-1961  Search this
White, Stanford, 1853-1906  Search this
Extent:
14.2 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Motion pictures (visual works)
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1906-1977
Summary:
The Aline and Eero Saarinen papers measure approximately 14.2 linear feet and date from 1906 to 1977. The bulk of the collection consists of Aline Saarinen's papers which document her relationship with her husband Eero Saarinen and other aspects of their personal lives, as well as Aline's work as an art and architectural critic, author, and television correspondent. Papers include research files for published and planned books (in which can be found scattered original letters of Stanford White, John Quinn and Edward Root) and other projects, NBC correspondent files, writings, committee files, correspondence, photographs, printed material, and miscellaneous personal papers.
Scope and Content Note:
The Aline and Eero Saarinen papers measure approximately 14.2 linear feet and date from 1906 to 1977. The bulk of the collection consists of Aline Saarinen's papers which document her relationship with her husband Eero Saarinen and other aspects of their personal lives, as well as Aline's work as an art and architectural critic, author, and television correspondent. Papers include research files for published and planned books (in which can be found scattered original letters of Stanford White, John Quinn and Edward Root) and other projects, NBC correspondent files, writings, committee files, correspondence, photographs, printed material, and miscellaneous personal papers. The portion of the collection relating to personal aspects of Aline and Eero Saarinen's lives consists of: Aline Saarinen's diary, guest book, notebooks, personal writings, biographical material, awards and honorary degrees; scattered papers of Eero Saarinen, including biographical material, drawings of furniture designs, various sketches and drawings, and some project timelines and notes; correspondence between Aline and Eero Saarinen (the bulk of which dates from the year they met and married), as well as general and family correspondence received by Aline Saarinen and some miscellaneous and personal correspondence of Eero Saarinen; printed material, mostly clippings, documenting aspects of the life, work, and achievements of both Aline and Eero Saarinen; and photographs, including ones of Aline Saarinen, Eero Saarinen, Aline and Eero Saarinen together, and family members, as well as ones from various trips and of various residences, and various slides. The bulk of the collection consists of material, including research and writing files, NBC correspondent files, and committee files, stemming from Aline Saarinen's various professional activities. Writings include manuscripts, typescripts, notes, notecards, and clippings of Aline Saarinen's various articles, lectures and speeches on art and architecture, scripts for television, creative and college writing. Research files include material for Saarinen's published book on art collectors, The Proud Possessors, and her planned, but never completed, biography of the architect, Stanford White. Research material for The Proud Possessors includes files of notes, manuscripts, correspondence, photographs and printed material on art collectors, and related material such as scrapbooks of correspondence and clippings in response to the book. Files also include scattered original material, such as correspondence and photographs, belonging to the collectors, John Quinn and Edward Root. Research material on Stanford White includes correspondence, notebooks, writings, printed material, photographs, and copies of architectural drawings. Also found is scattered original material belonging to Bessie White, Stanford White, and the firm of McKim, Mead and White. NBC material consists of files, including correspondence, printed material, notes, scripts, motion picture films and video transfers, and photographs, kept by Aline Saarinen while working as a television correspondent. Also found are miscellaneous research files on artists that may relate to television or other projects and files stemming from her involvement in various arts-related and other committees.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into two series: Series 1: Aline and Eero Saarinen Personal Papers, 1928-1977 (Boxes 1-4, 15, OV 16; 3.7 linear feet) Series 2: Aline Saarinen Professional Papers, 1906-1969 (Boxes 4-15, OV 16, FC 17-18; 10 linear feet)
Biographical Note:
Aline Bernstein Saarinen was born on March 25, 1914 in New York City. She attended Vassar College, where she took art courses and became interested in journalism, and graduated with a B.A. in 1935. She went on to receive her M.A. in the history of architecture from the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University in 1941. She married Joseph H. Louchheim in 1935, and they had two sons, Donald and Harry (or Hal). They divorced in 1951. Aline joined the staff of Art News Magazine in 1944 and served as managing editor from 1946 to 1948. She edited and provided commentary for the book, 5000 Years of Art in Western Civilization, which was published in 1946. She served as associate art editor and critic at The New York Times from 1948 to 1953 and then as associate art critic from 1954 to 1959. She received awards for her newspaper work, including the International Award for Best Foreign Criticism at the Venice Biennale in 1951, the Frank Jewett Mather Award for best newspaper art criticism in 1953, and the American Federation of Arts Award for best newspaper criticism in 1956. In 1953, Aline interviewed the architect Eero Saarinen for an article. Eero was born in 1910 in Kirkkonummi, Finland, and received his B.F.A. in Architecture from Yale University in 1934. He began work as an architect in his father Eliel Saarinen's firm and went on to start his own firm, Eero Saarinen and Associates. Among his best-known works are the Gateway Arch in St. Louis, Missouri, the Trans World Air Lines Terminal Building at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York, and Dulles International Airport in Chantilly, Virginia. Aline and Eero became romantically involved shortly after they met and were married in December 1953. The following year, they had a son, Eames (named after Eero's friend, the designer and architect Charles Eames). After their marriage, Aline relocated to Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, where she continued to work as associate art critic for The New York Times and where she served as Director of Information Service in the office of Eero Saarinen and Associates (from 1954 to 1963). In 1957, she received a Guggenheim Fellowship to work on a book about major American art collectors, The Proud Possessors, which was published by Random House in 1958. Thereafter, she began work on a biography of the architect, Stanford White, also for Random House; this work continued for several years, but the book was never completed. Over the years, she wrote numerous freelance articles on art, architecture, socio-cultural history, travel, and theater for magazines such as Atlantic Monthly, Vogue, Saturday Review of Literature, Reader's Digest, and Cosmopolitan. After Eero's sudden death in 1961, Aline edited the book, Eero Saarinen on His Work (1962). She then embarked upon a new career in television, appearing on shows such as "Today" and "Sunday" where she reported on manners, morals, culture, and the arts, and eventually becoming, in 1964, an NBC News correspondent for such shows as "The Huntley-Brinkley Report" and "The Frank McGee Report" in addition to the shows on which she was already appearing. In 1971, she was appointed chief of the NBC News Paris Bureau, becoming the first woman to hold such a position in television. In the 1960s, Aline served on various arts-related committees, including the Design Advisory Committee of the Federal Aviation Administration, the Fine Arts Commission, and the New York State Council of the Arts. She received honorary degrees from the University of Michigan in 1964 and Russell Sage College in 1967. Aline Saarinen died from a brain tumor on July 13, 1972. This biographical notes draws from the one on Aline Bernstein Saarinen by Seymour Brody in Jewish Heroes and Heroines of America: 150 True Stories of American Jewish Heroism, and from the one on Eero Saarinen in the Guide to the Eero Saarinen Collection at Yale University Library.
Related Material:
Also found in the Archives are: the Museum of Modern Art exhibition correspondence concerning Eero Saarinen, 1958-1959; the Lily Swann Saarinen papers, 1924-1974; an oral history interview with Lily Swann Saarinen, 1979-1981; and an oral history interview on Aline Saarinen with Charles Alan, 1973 February 17. Other related material includes: Eero Saarinen Collection, Manuscripts and Archives, Yale University Library.
Separated Material:
Two exhibition catalogs and various clippings that were donated as part of the collection were transferred to the Smithsonian American Art Museum Library in 1981.
Provenance:
The Aline and Eero Saarinen papers were donated in 1973 by Charles Alan, Aline Saarinen's brother and executor of her estate, and microfilmed. In 1966 five photographs of Eliel Saarinen's home in Helsinki, Finland were donated by Florence Davis and were subsequently integrated into the collection. The NBC material was donated in 1974 by NBC Studios via Charles Alan. Additional material, which had originally been donated to the Parrish Museum by Aline Saarinen, was donated to the Archives in 1991 by the Museum.
Restrictions:
The collection has been digitized and is available online via AAA's website. Use of material not digitized requires an appointment.
Rights:
The Aline and Eero Saarinen 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. Quotation, publication, or reproduction of scripts or films prepared for television must be cleared with NBC for rights: NBC Studios, 30 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY.
Topic:
Architecture -- United States  Search this
Architects -- Michigan -- Bloomfield Hills  Search this
Architectural historians -- Michigan  Search this
Women art historians -- Michigan  Search this
Art -- Collectors and collecting -- United States  Search this
Women architectural critics -- Michigan  Search this
Women art critics -- Michigan  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Motion pictures (visual works)
Sound recordings
Interviews
Citation:
Aline and Eero Saarinen Papers, 1906-1977. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.saaralin
See more items in:
Aline and Eero Saarinen papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-saaralin