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Oral history interview with Kathan Brown, 2017 December 15-18

Interviewee:
Brown, Kathan, 1935-  Search this
Brown, Kathan, 1935-  Search this
Interviewer:
Riedel, Mija, 1958-  Search this
Subject:
Crown Point Press (Oakland, Calif.)  Search this
Type:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Topic:
Authors -- California -- San Francisco -- Interviews  Search this
Printmakers -- California -- San Francisco -- Interviews  Search this
Women artists -- California -- San Francisco -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)17536
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)392053
AAA_collcode_brown17
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_392053

Rudolph Schaeffer papers, 1880s-1997

Creator:
Schaeffer, Rudolph Frederick, 1886-1988  Search this
Schaeffer, Rudolph Frederick, 1886-1988  Search this
Subject:
Wright, Frank Lloyd  Search this
Cunningham, Imogen  Search this
Tobey, Mark  Search this
Adams, Ansel  Search this
Frey, Caroline  Search this
Frey, Fred  Search this
Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design  Search this
East & West Gallery (San Francisco, Calif.)  Search this
Type:
Photographs
Scrapbooks
Diaries
Christmas cards
Designs
Interviews
Sketchbooks
Sketches
Sound recordings
Transcripts
Place:
Japan -- Description and Travel
Topic:
Artists -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Designers -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Art -- Collectors and collecting -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Art, Asian  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Artists -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Authors -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Color -- Study and teaching  Search this
Theme:
Art Materials, Techniques, and Studio Art Education  Search this
Architecture & Design  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)9605
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211811
AAA_collcode_scharudo
Theme:
Art Materials, Techniques, and Studio Art Education
Architecture & Design
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211811
Online Media:

Jan Butterfield papers, 1950-1997

Creator:
Butterfield, Jan, 1937-2000  Search this
Butterfield, Jan, 1937-2000  Search this
Subject:
Goode, Joe  Search this
Cage, John  Search this
Harrison, Helen Mayer  Search this
Harrison, Newton  Search this
Still, Clyfford  Search this
Dugmore, Edward  Search this
Francis, Sam  Search this
Irwin, Robert  Search this
Reinhardt, Ad  Search this
Nordman, Maria  Search this
Wheeler, Douglas  Search this
Orr, Eric  Search this
Nauman, Bruce  Search this
Shaw, Richard  Search this
Bell, Larry  Search this
Bischoff, Elmer  Search this
Hudson, Robert  Search this
Guston, Philip  Search this
Resnick, Milton  Search this
Ruscha, Edward  Search this
Rauschenberg, Robert  Search this
Greene, George  Search this
Roche, Jim  Search this
Turrell, James  Search this
Hopkins, Henry  Search this
Young, R. Joshua  Search this
Gehry, Frank O.  Search this
Wortz, E.  Search this
Kienholz, Edward  Search this
Wortz, Melinda  Search this
Karp, Michael  Search this
Pacific Enterprises  Search this
Lapis Press  Search this
Type:
Photographs
Sound recordings
Video recordings
Transcripts
Interviews
Scrapbooks
Topic:
Authors -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Theme:
Women  Search this
Art Theory and Historiography  Search this
Lives of American Artists  Search this
Art Theory and Historiography  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)6002
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)229789
AAA_collcode_buttjan
Theme:
Women
Art Theory and Historiography
Lives of American Artists
Art Theory and Historiography
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_229789
Online Media:

John Caldwell papers, circa 1909-1996

Creator:
Caldwell, John, 1941-1993  Search this
Caldwell, John, 1941-1993  Search this
Type:
Photographs
Essays
Drafts (documents)
Video recordings
Topic:
Curators -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Authors -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Authors -- Pennsylvania -- Pittsburg  Search this
Curators -- Pennsylvania -- Pittsburg  Search this
Theme:
Communities, Organizations, Museums  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)6004
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)230114
AAA_collcode_caldjohn
Theme:
Communities, Organizations, Museums
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_230114
Online Media:

Knute Stiles papers

Creator:
Stiles, Knute, 1923-  Search this
Names:
Bolotowsky, Ilya, 1907-1981  Search this
Coplans, John  Search this
Fiore, Joseph A., 1925-  Search this
Krikorian, Leo  Search this
Leider, Philip, 1929-  Search this
Mason, Alice Trumbull, 1904-1971  Search this
Masurovsky, Gregory, 1930-  Search this
Noland, Kenneth, 1924-2010  Search this
Thomas, Dylan, 1914-1953  Search this
Extent:
0.2 Linear feet ((on 2 partial microfilm reels))
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Date:
1947-1971
Scope and Contents:
Correspondence, sketches, collages, writings and printed material.
REEL 2291: Letters from Ilya Bolotowsky, Joseph A. Fiore, Leo Krikorian, and Alice Trumbull Mason; illustrated letters from Gregory Masurovsky and Kenneth Noland; memos from Philip Leider and John Coplans concerning articles written by Stiles for Artforum Magazine; 8 pen drawings by Dylan Thomas; 2 exhibition announcements; and miscellany.
REEL 4046: 9 letters from Ilya Bolotowsky to Stiles; and a letter from Stiles to Archives of American Art staff in which he comments upon the nature of his correspondence with Bolotowsky.
Unmicrofilmed Framed watercolor by Kenneth Noland.
Biographical / Historical:
Collage artist and writer; San Francisco, Calif.
Provenance:
Donated 1980-1987 by Knute Stiles.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Microfilmed materials must be consulted on microfilm. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Rights:
Reel 2291: Authorization to publish, quote or reproduce requires written permission from Andrew Bolotowsky. Contact Reference Services for more information.
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Occupation:
Authors -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Collagists -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Identifier:
AAA.stilknut
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-stilknut

Oral history interview with Kathan Brown

Interviewee:
Brown, Kathan  Search this
Interviewer:
Riedel, Mija, 1958-  Search this
Names:
Crown Point Press (Oakland, Calif.)  Search this
Extent:
4 Items (Sound recording: 4 sound files (2 hr., 51 min.), digital, wav)
75 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Interviews
Sound recordings
Date:
2017 December 15-18
Scope and Contents:
An interview with Kathan Brown conducted 2017 December 15 and 18, by Mija Riedel, for the Archives of American Art, at Brown's office at Crown Point Press, in San Francisco, California.
Biographical / Historical:
Kathan Brown (1935- ) is a printmaker, writer, and founder of Crown Point Press in San Francisco, California. Mija Riedel (1958- ) is a writer and editor in San Francisco, California.
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.
Topic:
Authors -- California -- San Francisco -- Interviews  Search this
Printmakers -- California -- San Francisco -- Interviews  Search this
Women artists -- California -- San Francisco -- Interviews  Search this
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Identifier:
AAA.brown17
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-brown17

Jan Butterfield papers

Creator:
Butterfield, Jan  Search this
Names:
Lapis Press  Search this
Pacific Enterprises  Search this
Bell, Larry, 1939-  Search this
Bischoff, Elmer, 1916-1991  Search this
Dugmore, Edward, 1915-  Search this
Francis, Sam, 1923-1994  Search this
Gehry, Frank O., 1929-  Search this
Goode, Joe, 1937-  Search this
Greene, George  Search this
Guston, Philip, 1913-1980  Search this
Harrison, Helen Mayer, 1929-  Search this
Harrison, Newton, 1932-  Search this
Hopkins, Henry, 1928-2009  Search this
Hudson, Robert, 1938-  Search this
Irwin, Robert, 1928-  Search this
Karp, Michael  Search this
Kienholz, Edward, 1927-  Search this
Nauman, Bruce, 1941-  Search this
Nordman, Maria  Search this
Orr, Eric, 1939-1998  Search this
Rauschenberg, Robert, 1925-2008  Search this
Reinhardt, Ad, 1913-1967  Search this
Resnick, Milton, 1917-2004  Search this
Roche, Jim  Search this
Ruscha, Edward  Search this
Shaw, Richard, 1941 Sept. 12-  Search this
Still, Clyfford, 1904-1980  Search this
Turrell, James  Search this
Wheeler, Douglas  Search this
Wortz, E.  Search this
Wortz, Melinda  Search this
Young, R. Joshua  Search this
Interviewee:
Cage, John, 1912-1992  Search this
Extent:
15 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Sound recordings
Video recordings
Transcripts
Interviews
Scrapbooks
Date:
1950-1997
Summary:
The papers of Jan Butterfield measure 15 linear feet and date from circa 1950 to 1997. Papers contain hundreds of recorded interviews with and lectures by artists, panel discussions of artists and art historians, as well as extensive writings by Butterfield. Also found are project files, personal business records, printed materials, photographs, and additional sound and video recordings related to art subjects.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of Jan Butterfield measure 15 linear feet and date from circa 1950 to 1997. Papers contain hundreds of recorded interviews with and lectures by artists, panel discussions of artists and art historians, as well as extensive writings by Butterfield. Also found are project files, personal business records, printed materials, photographs, and additional sound and video recordings related to art subjects.

Interviews and Lectures include hundreds of interviews conducted by Butterfield between 1971 and 1987 with contemporary artists about whom she was writing at the time. The artists Robert Irwin and Sam Francis are represented particularly well. Also found are slide talks, class discussions, and lectures given by artists, which are assumed to have been recorded by Butterfield in most cases. Also among the recordings are recorded performances by John Cage, Joe Goode, Newton and Helen Harrison, Jim Roche, and George Greene. Panel discussions include two notable recordings involving Milton Resnick, one with the painter Edward Dugmore in 1959, and the other with the painter Ad Reinhardt at The Club in 1961, which was later dubbed "The Attack."

The bulk of the writings relate to Butterfield's published work The Art of Light and Space, represented here in multiple drafts, research, and photographs of works of art by the artists discussed in the work including Robert Irwin, James Turrell, Maria Nordman, Douglas Wheeler, Bruce Nauman, Eric Orr, Larry Bell, DeWain Valentine, Susan Kaiser Vogel, and Hap Tivey. Also found are extensive drafts and research for catalog essays for exhibitions of Larry Bell, Richard Shaw, Robert Hudson, and Elmer Bischoff. Drafts of articles and publicity writing are mainly about artists but also some galleries and other art events. There are a few transcripts of recorded interviews, and it appears that many of the writings are based on Butterfield's interviews.

Project files include records relating to Butterfield's involvement with the production of a catalog for the corporate art collection of Pacific Enterprises. These also include additional artist interviews and artist files containing research and writing, mainly by her associate Michael Karp. Also found are photographs and sound recordings for the Waterfront Project at the San Francisco Art Institute, an interdisciplinary community-centered development project that involved Larry Bell, Robert Irwin, Melinda Wortz, Eric Orr, Dr. E. Wortz, Frank Gehry, Newton and Helen Harrison, Josh Young, and students at the Art Institute. And finally, project files include photographs, interviews, and printed material related to publications of Lapis Press, where Butterfield was Executive Director.

Personal business records include correspondence, price lists, financial records, notes, press releases, and career documentation of Butterfield. Printed materials include articles by Butterfield, articles about Butterfield, and articles by Henry Hopkins, most of which are photocopies. There are also clippings, exhibition catalogs, exhibition posters, and publicity. Of note is a disassembled scrapbook pertaining to the controversial Ed Kienholz exhibition at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in 1966, and a directory of art spaces in Los Angeles from 1978.

Most of the photographs are of works of art by artists about whom Butterfield wrote. Also found are a few files of photographs of artists, some taken by Butterfield, including Philip Guston, Ed Kienholz, Henry Hopkins with Clyfford Still, Robert Irwin, Robert Rauschenberg, and James Turrell. Additional video and sound recordings include artist installations, a documentary on Sam Francis, and an acoustiguide for an Ed Ruscha exhibition.
Arrangement:
This collection is arranged as 7 series.

Series 1: Interviews and Lectures (Boxes 1-5; 4.2 linear feet)

Series 2: Writings (Boxes 5-7, 16, OV 17; 3.7 linear feet)

Series 3: Project Files (Boxes 8-10, 16; 1.6 linear feet)

Series 4: Personal Business Records (Boxes 10-11, OV 17-19; 1.1 linear feet)

Series 5: Printed Materials (Boxes 11-12, 16, OV 17-19; 1.8 linear feet)

Series 6: Photographs (Boxes 12-14, 16; 2.2 linear feet)

Series 7: Sound and Video Recordings (Box 15; 0.4 linear feet)
Biographical / Historical:
Jan Butterfield (1937-2000) was an art writer and critic of contemporary art who spent most of her career in California. She is best known for her writings on late twentieth century installation and craft artists, particularly those who worked in California and the American West.

Butterfield was born Jan Van Alstine in Los Angeles, California in 1937 and attended the Univeristy of California, Los Angeles. She received numerous fellowships and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts as an art critic, and contributed art writing to dozens of exhibition catalogs and art publications including Art International, Images and Issues, Art News, Art in America, and Flash Art. Her most ambitious work of writing was The Art of Light and Space (Abbeville Press: 1993), which profiles the work of contemporary artists Robert Irwin, James Turrell, Maria Nordman, Douglas Wheeler, Bruce Nauman, Eric Orr, Larry Bell, DeWain Valentine, Susan Kaiser Vogel, and Hap Tivey. She was also the author of a 1972 monograph of the Abstract Expressionist painter Sam Francis.

Butterfield held positions in public relations at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art from its opening until 1970, and at the Fort Worth Art Museum from 1970 to 1974. She taught at Northwood Experimental Art Institute in Dallas, Texas, the San Francisco Art Institute, San Jose State University, and Mills College in Oakland, California between 1973 and 1983. At the San Francisco Art Institute, she was Director of the extension program and Coordinator of the visiting artist program and the Waterfront Project between 1976 and 1978. In 1984, Butterfield and the artist Sam Francis co-founded the Lapis Press, where she served as Executive Director from its founding until 1988.

Butterfield was married twice, the second time to Henry Hopkins, Museum Director at LACMA, the Museum of Fine Art of Houston, and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. She died in 2000 after an extended illness.
Related Materials:
Also found among the collections of the Archives of American Art is a 1981 panel discussion on Bay area art criticism sponsored by the National Women's Caucus for Art, in which Butterfield participated, as well as an oral history interview Butterfield conducted with Helen Lundeberg for the Archives' Oral History Program in 1980.
Separated Materials:
The Archives of American Art also holds microfilm of material lent for microfilming on reel 1042 including two volumes of scrapbooks. Loaned materials were returned to the lender and are not described in the collection container inventory.
Provenance:
Jan Butterfield lent material in 1975 for microfilming. She donated the Robert Irwin material in 1980 of and most of the interviews and audio tapes in 1989. An additional 12 feet of papers, including some material previously loaned and microfilmed, along with two additional audio tapes, were donated by Butterfield's brother, and Trustee of the Jan Butterfield Trust, Derek Van Alstine in 2002.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Occupation:
Art historians -- California  Search this
Art critics -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Topic:
Authors -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Sound recordings
Video recordings
Transcripts
Interviews
Scrapbooks
Citation:
Jan Butterfield papers, 1959-1998. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.buttjan
See more items in:
Jan Butterfield papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-buttjan

Oral history interview with Gary Garrels

Interviewee:
Garrels, Gary.  Search this
Interviewer:
Yablonsky, Linda, 1948-  Search this
Names:
Visual Arts and the AIDS Epidemic: An Oral History Project  Search this
Extent:
1 Item (sound files (3 hrs., 7 min.), digital, wav)
73 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Interviews
Sound recordings
Date:
2016 September 12
Scope and Contents:
An interview with Gary Garrels conducted 2016 September 12, by Linda Yablonsky, for the Archives of American Art's Visual Arts and the AIDS Epidemic: An Oral History Project, at the San Francisco Museum of Art in San Francisco, California.
Garrels speaks of his recent curatorial positions; his childhood in rural Iowa; his first meaningful exposure to art while working at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's gallery in Boston in the late 1970s; his first New York City gallery positions in the mid-1980s; his formative gay relationships; his body of curatorial work; launching A Day Without Art in 1988; working in Minneapolis and San Francisco in the mid-1990s; his longtime partnership with Richard Hoblock; changes in the museum world that he has observed since the start of his career; and his current lifestyle and work. Garrels also recalls John R. Lane, Neal Benezra, Irena Hochman, Laura Carpenter, Vito Acconci, David Ireland, James Surls, Stuart Sherman, Julie Sylvester, Heiner Friedrich, Julie Ault, Doug Ashford, Tim Rollins, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Tom Sokolowski, Bill Olander, Robert Atkins, Robert Gober, Kathy Halbreich, John Caldwell, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Interviewee Gary Garrels (1957- ) is an author and curator in San Francisco, California. Interviewer Linda Yablonsky (1948- ) is a writer in New York, New York.
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.
Occupation:
Authors -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Topic:
AIDS (Disease) and the arts  Search this
Curators -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Identifier:
AAA.garrel16
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-garrel16

John Caldwell papers

Creator:
Caldwell, John, 1941-  Search this
Extent:
1.7 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Essays
Drafts (documents)
Video recordings
Date:
circa 1909-1996
Summary:
The papers or curator and writer John Caldwell measure 1.7 linear feet and date circa 1909 to 1996. The collection documents Caldwell's life and career through a variety of materials, such as biographical material including legal papers relating to the Caldwell Estate, letters from friends and colleagues, writings by Caldwell such as a draft version of a speech and draft essays, printed material including articles written by Caldwell for the New York Times, photographs of Caldwell, family members, dealers, donors, and artists, as well as a video recording documenting the 1985 Carnegie International.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers or curator and writer John Caldwell measure 1.7 linear feet and date circa 1909 to 1996. The collection documents Caldwell's life and career through a variety of materials, such as biographical material including legal papers relating to the Caldwell Estate, letters from friends and colleagues, writings by Caldwell such as a draft version of a speech and draft essays, printed material including articles written by Caldwell for the New York Times, photographs of Caldwell, family members, dealers, donors, and artists, as well as a video recording documenting the 1985 Carnegie International.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into 6 series:

Series 1: Biographical Material, circa 1909-1996, undated (Box 1, OV 4; 0.6 linear feet)

Series 2: Letters, 1970-1994, undated (Box 1, OV 4; 0.3 linear feet)

Series 3: Writings, circa 1983-1992, undated (Box 2; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 4: Printed Material, 1977-1996, undated (Box 2, OV 4; 0.4 linear feet)

Series 5: Photographs, circa 1941-1993, undated (Box 3; 2 folders)

Series 6: Video Recording, 1985 (Box 3; 1 folder)
Biographical Note:
John Caldwell (1941-1993) was a curator and art critic in New York, NY, Pittsburg, PA, and San Francisco, CA. He was born on November 16, 1941 in Nashville, Tennessee. He received a bachelor's degree in modern French history from Harvard University in 1963 and his master's degree in art history from Hunter College, New York, NY, in 1973. While studying at Hunter, Caldwell also served as associate editor at the New-York Historical Society (1967-1973). From 1973 to 1976, Caldwell pursued a doctorate in eighteenth and nineteenth century American art history at Yale University and worked as an assistant to the curator of American art at the Yale University Art Gallery in New Haven, CT.

In 1975, Caldwell won an Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship with the Metropolitan Museum of Art; in 1977, he was appointed assistant curator of American art at the museum. From 1980 to 1984, Caldwell served as art critic for the suburban weekly sections of the New York Times. During this period, Caldwell's interest in contemporary art grew. In 1984, Caldwell accepted a position as adjunct curator of contemporary art at the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh, PA. A year later he was promoted to curator of contemporary art at the museum, a position that he held until 1989. Both Caldwell and John R. Lane, the director of the Carnegie Museum of Art, infused new energy into the 1985 Carnegie International, a triennial exhibition, that brought together many contemporary American and European works of art. Caldwell also spearheaded the 1988 Carnegie International and was the only curator in the history of the museum to have organized two consecutive Internationals. During his tenure at the Carnegie Museum of Art, Caldwell organized solo exhibitions on artists that included Susan Rothenberg (1984), Sean Scully (1985), and Richard Deacon (1988).

In 1989, two years after John R. Lane was appointed director of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Caldwell joined his former colleague and served as the first curator of painting and sculpture for the museum. At SFMoMA, Caldwell organized retrospective exhibitions on artists that included Sigmar Polke (1990-91), Luciano Fabro (1992), and Jeff Koons (1992-1993). He also curated one person shows of new works by artists that included Matthew Barney (1991), Sherrie Levine (1991), and Susana Solana (1991).

Caldwell died in 1993 at the age of 51 in Miami Beach, Florida.
Provenance:
The papers were donated in 2002 by Joan Witek, executrix of the John Caldwell estate.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requres advance notice.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Topic:
Curators -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Authors -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Authors -- Pennsylvania -- Pittsburg  Search this
Curators -- Pennsylvania -- Pittsburg  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Essays
Drafts (documents)
Video recordings
Citation:
John Caldwell papers, circa 1909-1996. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.caldjohn
See more items in:
John Caldwell papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-caldjohn

Rudolph Schaeffer papers

Creator:
Schaeffer, Rudolph  Search this
Names:
East & West Gallery (San Francisco, Calif.)  Search this
Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design  Search this
Adams, Ansel, 1902-1984  Search this
Cunningham, Imogen, 1883-1976 -- Photographs  Search this
Frey, Caroline  Search this
Frey, Fred  Search this
Tobey, Mark  Search this
Wright, Frank Lloyd, 1867-1959 -- Photographs  Search this
Extent:
13.3 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Scrapbooks
Diaries
Christmas cards
Designs
Interviews
Sketchbooks
Sketches
Sound recordings
Transcripts
Place:
Japan -- Description and Travel
Date:
1880s-1997
Summary:
The collection measures 13.3 linear feet, dates from the 1880s-1997 and documents the life and varied career of Rudolph Schaeffer, artist, designer, teacher, writer, collector of Asian art, and pioneer in the field of color study who founded the Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design in San Francisco in 1926. The papers include biographical information, correspondence, subject files, writings, diaries, journals, artwork, scrapbooks, sound recordings, and photographs.
Scope and Content Note:
The collection measures 13.3 linear feet, dates from the 1880s-1997, and documents the life and varied career of Rudolph Schaeffer, artist, designer, teacher, writer, collector of Asian art, and pioneer in the field of color study who founded the Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design in San Francisco in 1926. The papers include biographical information, correspondence, subject files, writings, diaries, journals, artwork, scrapbooks, sound recordings, and photographs.

Correspondence documents Schaeffer's personal and professional activities as well as the Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design. Subject files contain various combinations of correspondence, photographs, printed material, and drawings reflecting Schaeffer's activities, projects, and interests. Within the subject files is correspondence with artists, including Mark Tobey. Extensive writings include manuscripts for published and unpublished articles and drafts, notes, and manuscripts of several unpublished books including Collected Lectures of Rudolph Schaeffer on Color and Design, Color and Design, Prismatic Color Theory, and Rhythmo-Chromatics, all undated. Diaries include a volume recording Schaeffer's 1936 trip to Japan. 42 volumes of journals, compiled between 1954 and 1987, contain entries on a wide range of subjects including lists of errands, invitation lists, class notes, drafts of letters, notes including staff assignments and staff meetings, autobiographical notes and reminiscences, and musings on religion and philosophy.

The Artwork series houses artwork by Schaeffer and his students. Found are hand-made Christmas cards, designs, sketches, and sketchbooks. Seven scrapbooks document Rudolph Schaeffer's career, his school and former students, and the San Francisco art scene. They contain printed material, photographs, letters, and a small amount of artwork. Volume 3 is devoted to East West Gallery, and volume 7 documents Rudolph Schaeffer's 90th Birthday and the 50th Anniversary of the Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design.

Most untranscribed sound recordings (audio cassettes and reels) are of lectures by Schaeffer and others delivered at the Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design.

Miscellaneous records includes a series of hand-baticked fabric samples from the Wiener Werkstatte, as well as transcripts of an oral history with Schaeffer and other interviews.

Printed material concerns the career of Rudolph Schaeffer, his school and former students, the San Francisco art scene, and general art topics. Included are articles and a book by Schaeffer, catalogs and other items produced by the Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design, and miscellaneous items about or mentioning Schaeffer and his school. Items of note are announcements of courses taught by Schaeffer in Piedmont and San Francisco prior to the opening of his school, and theatre programs from productions with sets and some costumes designed by Schaeffer in the early 1920s.

Photographs are of artwork, people, places, events, stage designs, and miscellaneous subjects. Artwork includes some designs by Rudolph Schaeffer; people include Schaeffer, his family, friends, and students. Of particular note are a photograph of Frank Lloyd Wright's visit to the Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design, and one of Rudolph Schaeffer and Imogen Cunningham. Places include interior and exterior views of the Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design at its St. Anne Street and Mariposa Street locations. Also included are photographs by Ansel Adams of the home of Ed and Caroline Fey.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 10 series:

Series 1: Biographical Information, 1900-1988 (Box 1; 0.1 linear ft.)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1906-1989 (Box 1, 19; 0.5 linear ft.)

Series 3: Subject Files, 1907-1988 (Boxes 1-2, OV 16; 1.3 linear ft.)

Series 4: Writings, circa 1910-1987 (Boxes 2-6, 15, 19, 21; 4.2 linear ft.)

Series 5: Artwork, 1911-1957 (Boxes 6-15, 19, 21 OV 17; 0.6 linear ft.)

Series 6: Scrapbooks, 1933-1976 (Boxes 6, 14, 19; 0.6 linear ft.)

Series 7: Sound Recordings, 1949-1986 (Boxes 11-13; 1.2 linear ft.)

Series 8: Miscellaneous Records, 1905-1986 (Box 7, 19, 22; 0.8 linear ft.)

Series 9: Printed Material, 1906-1994 (Boxes 7-8, 15, 19, 22; 1.2 linear ft.)

Series 10: Photographs, 1880s-circa 1988 (Boxes 8-10,15, 20, 22, OV 18; 1.8 linear ft.)
Biographical Note:
Rudolph Schaeffer (1886-1988), a proponent of the Arts and Crafts movement, aspired to unite technology, science, and lifestyle in order to live in harmony with nature. An individual with many talents and interests, he was best known for his work in the field of color study and as a teacher and the founder of the Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design in San Francisco.

Born on a farm in Clare, Michigan in 1886, Rudolph Schaeffer displayed musical and artistic talent from a young age. Although he initially wanted to become a professional musician, he began focusing more on art when his musical abilities were compromised by an improperly set broken wrist. Schaeffer received his first formal art training as a high school student and then attended the Thomas Normal Training School in Detroit, where he studied music, art, and design. He continued studying independently, developing interests in calligraphy and metal craft.

In 1907, Schaeffer taught manual training courses in the Columbus, Ohio, public schools. The following summer he traveled to Paris and London. While in London he saw an exhibition of Josef Hoffman's modern interiors that had a great impact on his own design ideas. He then returned to Michigan and taught in schools close to home. In 1909, Schaeffer attended a design course in Minneapolis taught by A. E. Batchelder, director of Throop Polytechnic Institute in Pasadena. Both Batchelder and his course were strong influences on Schaeffer, as was Ralph Johnot, a proponent of Arthur Wesley Dow's design principles. In 1910 Schaeffer joined the faculty of Throop Polytechnic Institute, where he remained for five years.

The U. S. Commission on Education selected Schaeffer to be part of a delegation of twenty-five American teachers sent to Munich for several months in 1914 to investigate the exemplary industrial design curriculum offered in their secondary schools. Schaeffer subsequently expected to begin teaching at the Manual Arts High School in Los Angeles at the start of the 1914 school year, but World War I erupted while he was in Germany and his return to the United States was delayed so long that another teacher had to be hired to fill his place.

In 1915 Schaeffer was a manual training instructor at the California College of Arts and Crafts (formerly the Hopkins School), and taught design and metal crafts at the University of California Berkeley. For a number of years afterwards, he did free lance design work, taught private classes, and ran a small summer school in his Piedmont studio. Schaeffer was a visiting professor at Stanford University in 1918 when he was drafted and sent to drafting and surveying courses by the Army. Between 1917 and 1924 Schaeffer was on the faculty of the California College of Arts and Crafts where he taught design, color, handicrafts, and interior design. During this period he developed a new approach to teaching color and design based on the prismatic color wheel.

During the early 1920s Schaeffer worked as a set designer and as Art Director of Greek Theatre at the University of California at Berkeley, Schaeffer began applying prismatic color theory to set and costume design. He also designed sets for productions in Detroit. In 1925, Schaeffer saw the Paris Exposition and researched interior and stage design while in France.

The Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design which, in its early days was called the Rudolph Schaeffer School of Rhythmo-Chromatic Design, opened on St. Anne Street in San Francisco's Chinatown in 1926. In 1951 the school then moved to Union Street on Telegraph Hill where it remained for nearly a decade. In 1960, the school purchased a former boys' school on Mariposa Street, Portero Hill. Rudolph Schaeffer lived in a small cottage built for him at the rear of the property where he designed and tended a remarkable "Peace Garden."

The Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design was best known for its courses in color and interior design. Schaeffer was the first person in the United States to teach prismatic color theory, is credited with being the first to use the term "interior design" rather than "interior decoration" and the first to incorporate the use of models into interior design coursework. In 1959 the school's courses were expanded from 2 to 3-year programs and a diploma was awarded. Former students include many successful interior designers, textile designers, furniture designers, industrial designers, commercial artists, color consultants, teachers, and master flower arrangers.

In addition to the interior design and color diploma courses, the school offered a summer session, classes for children, a brief lecture series for the general public, and a wide variety of classes including advertising art, architecture and design, art history, art in public schools, calligraphy, color design, color for television, color for weavers, color theory, design, drawing, environmental aesthetics, fashion design, fashion illustration, flower arrangement, industrial design, interior design, Notan, sculpture, space planning, textile design, and weaving. Always struggling financially and sometimes lacking adequate enrollment, the school nevertheless managed to stay open for nearly 60 years. In 1984, the Board of Directors voted to remove Schaeffer from the board and close the school. Two years earlier the board had forced Schaeffer to retire, appointed him Director Emeritus, and brought in a new director charged with making the institution financially solvent, reorganizing the curriculum, and working toward accreditation. Unable to separate himself from the school (though he had done so legally when it was incorporated in 1953), Schaeffer balked and refused to cooperate with plans for revitalizing the institution.

One of the aims of the Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design was to interpret Asian esthetic principles. To this end the East West Gallery was established at the school in 1950. A membership organization, it offered exhibitions, lectures, concerts, and other programs that encouraged cultural integration. Exhibitions alternated between East (Asian art and artifacts from Rudolph Schaeffer's collection or other sources) and West (student work or work of local artists illustrating the influence of the Asian esthetic on contemporary art and design). East West Gallery was a membership organization, the first space of its kind in San Francisco for Asian art and operated in each of the school's locations.

In addition to running the school Schaeffer was involved in many other activities. He wrote several articles about flower arrangement, color, and color theory that were published in popular magazines. In 1935, he published Flower Arrangement Folio I (said to be the first on the subject published in this country) and in 1942 edited and wrote the introduction to Sunset's Flower Arrangement Book by Nell True Welch. Over a period of many years, he worked on several monographs on color, design, and "rhythmo-chromatics." None were ever published.

A sought-after speaker on the subjects of color, interior design, flower arrangement, and myriad other art topics, Schaeffer frequently served as a juror for art exhibitions and flower shows. From the 1930s on, the San Francisco department store Emporium used his services as a color consultant, as did Dutch Boy paints, and numerous textile and clothing manufacturers. Builders also asked Schaeffer to select interior and exterior colors for suburban housing developments.

Schaeffer worked on planning and designing the decorative arts exhibition at the 1939-40 Golden Gate International Exposition. In 1943-44, he participated in the Red Cross's Arts and Skills program, using color therapy with shell-shocked soldiers in a psychiatric unit.

The Rudolph Schaeffer Collection of Asian Art began as a collection of ceramics, both historical and contemporary examples chosen for their form and color, which he used for flower arrangements and in set-ups for still life classes. It soon expanded to include color prints, paintings, screens, and other works of art and portions were exhibited frequently in the East West Gallery. Selections from this collection were exhibited in Kansas City in 1960 and at the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco in 1976.

The City of San Francisco declared June 26, 1986, Schaeffer's 100th birthday, "Rudolph Schaeffer Day" and it was observed with great fanfare. He died at home on March 5, 1988, a few months before his 102nd birthday.
Provenance:
The Rudolph Schaeffer papers were donated in 1991 by Rudolph Schaeffer and the Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design administrator Peter Docili, and in 1999 and 2000 by James Alexander, a friend of both Schaeffer and Docili, who had been storing portions of Docili's estate after his death in 1998, with the assistance of Frances Valesco, a fiber artist and researcher. An addition was received in 2007 by William Woodworth, a close friend and caretaker of Schaeffer's and in 2017 and 2018 by Frances Valesco.
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 archival audiovisual recordings requires advance notice.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Occupation:
Art teachers -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Topic:
Artists -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Designers -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Art -- Collectors and collecting -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Art, Asian  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Artists -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Authors -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Color -- Study and teaching  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Scrapbooks
Diaries
Christmas cards
Designs
Interviews
Sketchbooks
Sketches
Sound recordings
Transcripts
Citation:
Rudolph Schaeffer papers, 1880s-1997. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.scharudo
See more items in:
Rudolph Schaeffer papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-scharudo

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