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Oral history interview with Ira Spanierman

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Catalog Data

Spanierman, Ira  Search this
McElhinney, James Lancel, 1952-  Search this
Widgeon Point Charitable Foundation  Search this
Cooper-Hewitt Museum.  Search this
Savoy Gallery  Search this
Spanierman Gallery  Search this
Syracuse University -- Students  Search this
Widgeon Point Charitable Foundation  Search this
Adler, A. M. (Abraham M), 1902-1985  Search this
Fraad, Daniel  Search this
Fraad, Rita  Search this
Gerds, Abigail  Search this
Goodrich, Lloyd, 1897-1987  Search this
Halles, Bruce  Search this
Halles, Diane  Search this
Heinrich, Hans  Search this
Hirsch, Norman  Search this
Leroy, Roy  Search this
Newington, Barbara  Search this
Noortman, Rob  Search this
Novak, Barbara  Search this
Poskas, Peter  Search this
Terra, Daniel J., 1911-1996  Search this
Thaw, Eugene Victor  Search this
Warner, Jack  Search this
Wilson, Peter (Cayuga)  Search this
Woodner, Ian  Search this
63 Pages (Trancript)
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Sound recordings
2007 June 6-12
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Ira Spanierman conducted June 6-12, by James McElhinney, for the Archives of American Art, in the Spanierman Gallery, New York, New York. Spanierman speaks of growing up and living in New York City his whole life; the influence of working in his father's antique store; studying English at Syracuse University; how he got involved in the art business; becoming an auctioneer at Savoy Gallery working with silver and arms and armor; his collecting preferences; the influence of the Internet and technology; changes in the art market among buyers and collectors; the development and growth of art auctions; opening his first gallery and what kind of art he showed; interest in dealing 19th and 20th century American art; the kind of clientele he attracted; the Spanierman Gallery catalogues and publication program; publishing and distributing the catalogue raisonné; working and collaborating with other institutions like the Cooper-Hewitt; working with a panel of scholars to identify work that was fraud; the various kinds of collectors he has dealt with in the past and what kind of collectors he prefers to work with; opening a contemporary and modern wing to the gallery and the motivation behind that; relationships with artists; exhibiting members of the Ashcan School, the Ten, and the Hudson River School; trying to find artists that have been overlooked in the past and promoting a re-emergence of these figures and their work; a number of mentors in his life including Abe Adler and Roy Leroy; advice for younger collectors; what he sees in the future for the art market; a shift in privately owned art being turned over to museums; the educational aspect of his gallery; future goals of his gallery; the role of the museum today; what he has contributed to the art world; and how he would like to be remembered and thought of in the future. Spanierman also recalls Peter Wilson, Gene Thaw, Lloyd Goodrich, Abigail Gerds, Peter Poskas, Hans Heinrich, Daniel Terra, Jack Warner, Diane and Bruce Halles, Daniel and Rita Fraad, Barbara Newington, Robert Noortman, Ian Woodner, Barbara Novak, Roy Leroy, Abraham Adler, Norman Hirsch and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Ira Spanierman is a gallery owner from New York, New York. James McElhinney (1952- ) is a painter and educator from New York, New York.
Originally recorded on 2 sound discs. Reformatted in 2010 as 2 digital wav files. Duration is 2 hr., 21 min.
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.
Art, American -- 19th century  Search this
Art, American -- 20th century  Search this
Art -- Collectors and collecting  Search this
Ashcan school of art  Search this
Gallery owners -- New York (State) -- New York -- Interviews  Search this
Hudson River school of landscape painting  Search this
Sound recordings
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art