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Thomas Hess papers

Creator:
Hess, Thomas B.  Search this
Names:
Mark Rothko Foundation  Search this
Bess, Forrest, 1911-1977  Search this
Campbell, Lawrence  Search this
De Kooning, Elaine  Search this
De Kooning, Willem, 1904-1997  Search this
Frankenthaler, Helen, 1928-2011  Search this
Gottlieb, Adolph, 1903-1974  Search this
Guston, Philip, 1913-1980  Search this
Kline, Franz, 1910-1962  Search this
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Newman, Barnett, 1905-1970  Search this
Noguchi, Isamu, 1904-1988  Search this
Reinhardt, Ad, 1913-1967  Search this
Rivers, Larry, 1925-2002  Search this
Rosenberg, Harold, 1906-1978  Search this
Rothko, Mark, 1903-1970  Search this
Schapiro, Meyer, 1904-  Search this
Schuyler, James  Search this
Smith, David, 1906-1965  Search this
Still, Clyfford, 1904-1980  Search this
Extent:
10.01 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Sound recordings
Drawings
Greeting cards
Illustrated letters
Paintings
Cartoons (humorous images)
Photographs
Collages
Date:
1939-1978
Summary:
The papers of New York editor and art critic Thomas Hess measure 10.01 linear feet and date from 1939 to 1978. The collection includes biographical materials, correspondence, extensive writings and notes, artists and subject files that also include recorded conversations with artists and others, printed materials, photographic materials, and artwork.

There is a .01 linear foot unprocessed addition to this collection donated in 2022 that includes a six page typed manuscript, "Think, American Painting," undated, by Thomas Hess and the book American Realists and Magic Realists, The Museum of Modern Art, 1943, signed by Hess.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of New York editor and art critic Thomas Hess measure 10.01 linear feet and date from 1939 to 1978. The collection includes biographical materials, correspondence, extensive writings and notes, artists and subject files that also include recorded conversations with artists and others, printed materials, photographic materials, and artwork.

Biographical material includes a certificate, architectural plans, investment information, invoices, publisher and loan agreements, will for Paul Stamm, and resumes. Correspondence is with members of Hess' family including his wife and children, Philip Guston, Meyer Schapiro, David Smith, James Schuyler, Forrest Bess, Elaine de Kooning, Barnett Newman, Larry Rivers, Clyfford Still, Ad Reinhardt, and others.

Writings and notes consist of manuscripts and drafts by Hess for Art News, Le Monde, Vogue, New York magazine, and other publications; Hess' senior essay and class notes; notes on Ingres, Italian artists, and travels abroad; notebooks on art and literature; and scattered writings by others.

Artists and subject files contain primarily photographs of artwork, artists, and colleaguesare mostly photographs of artwork, artists, and colleagues. Some of the files also contain printed materials, writings, notes, and other documentation. The file on Willem de Kooning includes a sound recording of a conversation between Hess, de Kooning, and Harold Rosenberg. There are also significant files on Elaine de Kooning, Helen Frankenthaler, Adolph Gottlieb, Franz Kline, Carl Milles, Barnett Newman, Isamu Noguchi, Ad Reinhardt, Mark Rothko and the Mark Rothko Foundation Inc.

Printed materials include brochures and flyers, clippings, magazines and newspapers, press releases, travel memorabilia, and a printed scarf. Photographs are of of Hess, his wife Audrey, other family members, works of art, travel, Larry Rivers and Ad Reinhardt, and other artists and colleagues. Artwork includes drawings, paintings, collages, cartoons, and holiday cards made by Hess and his children, along with artwork by others including Audrey and Lawrence Campbell, Ad Reinhardt, and unidentified artists.

There is a .01 linear foot unprocessed addition to this collection donated in 2022 that includes a six page typed manuscript, "Think, American Painting," undated, by Thomas Hess and the book American Realists and Magic Realists, The Museum of Modern Art, 1943, signed by Hess.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 8 series.

Missing Title

Series 1: Biographical Materials, 1945-1977 (0.3 linear feet; Box 1, OV 15)

Series 2: Correspondence, circa 1945-1978 (1.0 linear feet; Box 1-2, OV 11)

Series 3: Writings and Notes, circa 1940-1978 (2.5 linear feet; Box 2-5, OV 12)

Series 4: Artists and Subject Files, circa 1946-1978 (4.5 linear feet; Box 5-9, OVs 13, 15-16)

Series 5: Printed Materials, 1943-1978 (0.5 linear feet; Box 9, OV 11)

Series 6: Photographic Materials, 1949-circa 1960s (0.8 linear feet; Box 9-10, OV14)

Series 7: Artwork, 1939-1978 (0.4 linear feet; Box 10, OV 11)

Series 8: Unprocessed Addition, 1943 and undated (0.01 linear feet; Folder 17)
Biographical / Historical:
Thomas B. Hess (1920-1978) was an editor, art critic, and curator who worked in New York City. He was on the staff at Art News for 26 years (1946-72). Starting as an editorial associate, he was named managing editor in 1948, then executive editor in 1954; he assumed the top editorial post in 1965 upon the death of long-time editor Alfred Frankfurter. In his critical writing from the late 1940s on, he was an influential supporter of the Abstract Expressionists. He wrote widely on other topics as well. In 1972 he left Art News after an ownership change. He then became the art critic for New York magazine (1972-78), a large-circulation weekly reaching a much larger public. (He was also, in the late '60s, a correspondent for the French daily newspaper Le Monde.)

Over the years he undertook several major curatorial projects including traveling retrospectives for Willem de Kooning (1968-69) and Barnett Newman (1971), which he organized for the Museum of Modern Art. His "New York School Painting and Sculpture" appeared at the New York State Museum in Albany in 1977. Both MoMA exhibitions were accompanied by comprehensive monograph/catalogues: Willem de Kooning (1968) and Barnett Newman (1971). Hess's other books include Abstract Painting: Background and American Phase (1951, Viking); Willem de Kooning (1959, Braziller); De Kooning, Recent Paintings (1967, Walker & Co.); Barnett Newman (1969, Walker & Co.); De Kooning: Drawings (1972, New York Graphic); and The Art Comics and Satires of Ad Reinhardt (1975, De Luca Editore, Rome).

Hess became consultative chairman of the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Department of 20th-Century Art a few months before his death from a heart attack in July 1978, age 57. Already under way were a Clyfford Still retrospective and a smaller show of recent paintings and sculptures by Ellsworth Kelly. Both exhibitions, completed by Philippe de Montebello (the Met's then new director) and Lowery S. Sims (the Met's then acting 20th-century curator) respectively, took place the year after Hess's death.

Thomas Hess was born in Rye, New York, to Gabriel Lorie Hess, a lawyer, and Helen Baer. He attended school in the United States and Switzerland. He continued his education at Yale University majoring in French 17th-century art history and literature. After graduating in 1942, Hess worked for a short period at the Museum of Modern Art under Alfred H. Barr and Dorothy Miller, before entering World War II as a pilot. In 1944 he married Audrey Stern with whom he had three children, William, Philip, and Anne Helen.
Separated Materials:
Materials on legacy microfilm reel 5028 related to Barnett Newman are photocopies. The originals are located at the Barnett New Foundation in New York City.
Provenance:
The Thomas Hess papers were donated in multiple increments from 1985 to 1987 by Hess' children, Anne Helen, William, and Philip Hess, except for a file on Barnett Newman donated by Newman's widow, who presumably had borrowed it from Hess. In 2014, additional correspondence, writings, photographs, printed material, and cartoons, including some by Ad Reinhardt, were donated by Elizabeth Wolff, Hess' sister. A small addition was donated in 2022 by Anne Hess, Thomas Hess' daughter.
Restrictions:
This collection is open for research. Access to original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center.
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 critics -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Artists -- Italy  Search this
Editors -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Drawings
Greeting cards
Illustrated letters
Paintings
Cartoons (humorous images)
Photographs
Collages
Citation:
Thomas Hess papers, 1939-1978. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.hessthom
See more items in:
Thomas Hess papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9cfd2536a-b35e-4030-9768-bfa094d6db9e
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-hessthom
Online Media:

Carl Milles: artist file, [photographs]

Artist:
Milles, Carl 1875-1955  Search this
Physical description:
1 folder
Type:
Photograph
Artist files
Topic:
Art, Swedish  Search this
Image number:
VFM VF002016
See more items in:
Photograph Study Collection
Data Source:
Photograph Study Collection, Smithsonian American Art Museum
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_jul_140621

Oral history interview with Harvey K. Littleton

Interviewee:
Littleton, Harvey K.  Search this
Interviewer:
Byrd, Joan Falconer  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
American Craft Council  Search this
Ann Arbor Potters Guild  Search this
Black Mountain College (Black Mountain, N.C.)  Search this
Corning Glass Works  Search this
Cranbrook Academy of Art -- Students  Search this
Haystack Mountain School of Crafts  Search this
Midwest Designer-Craftsmen  Search this
Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Penland School of Handicrafts  Search this
Pilchuck School  Search this
Renwick Gallery  Search this
University of Michigan -- Students  Search this
Braden, Norah, 1901-  Search this
Brown, William J. (William Joseph), 1923-1992  Search this
Dreisbach, Fritz  Search this
Eames, Charles  Search this
Eisch, Erwin, 1927-  Search this
Fredericks, Marshall M., 1908-1998  Search this
Hamada, Shōji, 1894-1978  Search this
Marioni, Dante, 1964-  Search this
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Turner, Robert Chapman, 1913-2005  Search this
Voulkos, Peter, 1924-2002  Search this
Extent:
36 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
2001 March 15
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Harvey K. Littleton conducted 2001 March 15, by Joan Falconer Byrd, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, in Littleton's home, Spruce Pine, N.C.
Littleton speaks of his family background including the work of his father [Jesse Talbot Littleton] at Corning Glassworks, and his early experiences with glass at Corning. He discusses his studies at the University of Michigan in physics and his switch to sculpture; his studies at Cranbrook Academy, in 1941, and his teachers Marshall Fredericks and Carl Milles; his studies on industrial design; becoming a potter; and working at Corning Glassworks, in the summers, inspecting hand-blown coffee pots and top-of-the-stove ware. He discusses his service in the 849th Signal Intelligence Unit in North Africa and Italy during WWII; studying with Norah Braden, at the Brighton School of Art, in England; the importance of, "A Potter's Book," by Bernard Leach; teaching pottery at night, in Ann Arbor, Michigan; the beginnings of the Ann Arbor Potters Guild; making his own potters' wheels; serving on the board of Penland School of Crafts; the development of "American" art and the impact of the GI Bill on the creation and expansion of art departments; the "master-slave apprentice system"; "the genius of Shoji Hamada"; the properties of porcelain; artist communities at Penland and Cranbrook; the influence of Bill Brown, director of the Penland School of Crafts; art education and the impact of the MFA; Black Mountain College, Pilchuck Glass School, and Haystack Mountain School of Crafts; problems with the European educational system; the importance of Erwin Eisch's work on his development; his relationship with galleries and museums, particularly the Museum of Modern Art, the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, and American Craft Museum; and consignment laws. He also comments on the founding of the Midwest Designer Craftsmen; his involvement with the American Crafts Council (ACC) and the distinction between "the indigenous craftsman" and the "artist-craftsman"; American Crafts Council fairs; his printmaking; his techniques of sandblasting; teaching vitreography; and his plans for opening a print gallery. He recalls Charles Eames, Peter Voulkos, Shoji Hamada, Robert Turner, Dante Marioni, Fritz Dreisbach, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Harvey K. Littleton (1922- ) is a glass artist, potter, sculptor, and printmaker from Wisconsin and Spruce Pine, N.C. Joan Falconer Byrd (1939-) ia a professor in the art department of Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, N.C.
General:
Originally recorded on 3 sound cassettes. Reformatted in 2010 as 6 digital wav files. Duration is 3 hrs., 10 min.
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:
Glass artists -- North Carolina -- Interviews  Search this
Potters -- Interviews  Search this
Pottery -- Study and teaching -- United States.  Search this
Printmakers -- North Carolina -- Interviews  Search this
Prints -- Technique  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.little01
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw961daf4d2-b6dd-486c-8664-b04a9b099d65
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-little01
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Harry Bertoia

Interviewee:
Bertoia, Harry  Search this
Interviewer:
Cummings, Paul  Search this
Names:
Carroll, John, 1892-1959  Search this
Eames, Charles  Search this
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Saarinen, Eero, 1910-1961  Search this
Sarkis, 1909-1977  Search this
Extent:
33 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1972 June 20
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Harry Bertoia conducted 1972 June 20, by Paul Cummings, for the Archives of American Art. Bertoia speaks of his childhood in San Lorenzo, Italy; his family; his art education at Cass Technical School, the Society of Arts and Crafts in Detroit, and Cranbrook Academy; his early metal work and woodcuts; defense work with Charles Eames in Venice, California; development of Eames' prize-winning plywood chair; his chair designs for Knoll International; exhibitions of his sculpture; his experiments with sound and with "sonambient" sculpture; and techniques and materials. Bertoia also discusses his commissioned works for Manufacturer's Trust, General Motors, and Dulles Airport. He recalls John Carroll, Carl Milles, Eero Saarinen, Sarkis Sarkisian, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Harry Bertoia (1915-1978) was a sculptor and furniture designer.
General:
Originally recorded 2 sound tape reels. Reformatted in 2010 as 3 digital wav files. Duration is 3 hr., 1 min.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives' 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 others.
Topic:
Design  Search this
Designers -- Interviews  Search this
Sculptors -- Interviews  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.bertoi72
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw98098a0f2-7a00-4216-8519-d6bb293d07bb
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-bertoi72
Online Media:

Carl Milles papers, 1942-1970

Creator:
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Subject:
Christ-Janer, Albert  Search this
Schiwetz, Pete  Search this
Topic:
Sculpture, American -- Michigan  Search this
Theme:
American Art and Artists in a Global Context  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)8003
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)210172
AAA_collcode_millcarl
Theme:
American Art and Artists in a Global Context
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_210172

Carl and Olga Milles papers, 1933-1951

Creator:
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Milles, Olga Granner, 1874-1967  Search this
Subject:
Mussolini, Benito  Search this
Milles, Ruth Anna Maria  Search this
Theme:
American Art and Artists in a Global Context  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)9802
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)212240
AAA_collcode_millecar
Theme:
American Art and Artists in a Global Context
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_212240

Carl Milles letter to Henry Booth, 1943 September 27

Creator:
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Theme:
Lives of American Artists  Search this
American Art and Artists in a Global Context  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)6769
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)208895
AAA_collcode_boothenr
Theme:
Lives of American Artists
American Art and Artists in a Global Context
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_208895

Buddha of the Sea, (sculpture)

Sculptor:
Milles, Carl 1875-1955  Search this
Medium:
Rosso Antico marble
Type:
Sculptures
Owner/Location:
Cranbrook Educational Community Cranbrook Academy of Art/Museum 380 Lone Pine Road, P.O. Box 801 Bloomfield Hills Michigan 48013
Date:
1913-14
Topic:
Mythology--Asian--Buddha  Search this
Control number:
IAS 76000466
Data Source:
Art Inventories Catalog, Smithsonian American Art Museums
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_ari_899

Cranbrook Foundation records

Creator:
Cranbrook Foundation  Search this
Names:
American Federation of Arts  Search this
Detroit Institute of Arts  Search this
Society of Arts and Crafts (Boston, Mass.)  Search this
Society of Arts and Crafts (Detroit, Mich.)  Search this
Scripps family  Search this
Bach, Oscar Bruno, b. 1884  Search this
Billington, Cecil  Search this
Booth, George G. (George Gough), b. 1864  Search this
Bradford, Francis Scott, 1898-1961  Search this
Cheney, Sheldon, 1886-  Search this
Childs, M. W.  Search this
Gimpel, René  Search this
Kahn, Albert, 1869-1942  Search this
Karbel, Mario  Search this
Kirk, Arthur Neville  Search this
Kirshmayer, I.  Search this
Lorch, Emil, 1870-1963  Search this
Lyle, John M. (John McIntosh), 1872-1945  Search this
McEwen, Katherine, b. 1875  Search this
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Player, Cyril Arthur  Search this
Extent:
640 Items ((on 1 microfilm reel))
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Date:
1912-1960
Scope and Contents:
Correspondence; financial records; a draft of a proposed publication about Cranbrook; letters regarding a biography of founder, George G. Booth, and of the Scripps family; miscellaneous items, including an address by George Booth to the Cranbrook School; and clippings.
Among the individual correspondents are Albert Kahn, M. W. Childs, Emil Lorch, Oscar Bach, Mario Karbel, Francis Scott Bradford, Jr., Katherine McEwen, I. Kirshmayer, René Gimpel, Sheldon Cheney, Carl Milles, John M. Lyle, Cecil Billington, Cyril Arthur Player, and Arthur Neville Kirk. Organizations figuring in the correspondence include the American Federation of Arts, the Society of Arts and Crafts, Detroit, the Society of Arts and Crafts, Boston, the Detroit Institute of Arts, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Provenance:
Lent for microfilming 1974 by the Cranbrook Foundation.
Restrictions:
The Archives of American art does not own the original papers. Use is limited to the microfilm copy.
Identifier:
AAA.cranfoun
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9929054f2-fe9d-4953-ac29-056560c3003d
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-cranfoun

James S. Plaut papers

Creator:
Plaut, James S. (James Sachs), 1912-1996  Search this
Names:
Expo 67 (Montréal, Québec)  Search this
Exposition universelle et internationale (1958 : Brussels, Belgium)  Search this
Institute of Contemporary Art (Boston, Mass.)  Search this
Institute of Modern Art (Boston, Mass.)  Search this
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston  Search this
World Crafts Council  Search this
Adenauer, Konrad, 1876-1967  Search this
Berman, Eugene, 1899-1972  Search this
Bernstein, Leonard, 1918-1990  Search this
Breuer, Marcel, 1902-  Search this
Eisenhower, Dwight D. (Dwight David), 1890-1969  Search this
Gandhi, Indira, 1917-1984  Search this
Gropius, Walter, 1883-1969  Search this
Kirstein, Lincoln, 1907-  Search this
Kokoschka, Oskar, 1886-  Search this
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Peirce, Waldo, 1884-1970  Search this
Ruckstull, F. W. (Fred Wellington), 1853-1942  Search this
Sachs, Paul J. (Paul Joseph), 1878-1965  Search this
Wright, Frank Lloyd, 1867-1959  Search this
Extent:
1.4 Linear feet
2.2 Linear feet (Addition)
4 Volumes (Reels 581 and 5139: Scrapbooks)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Volumes
Interviews
Scrapbooks
Sketchbooks
Sound recordings
Place:
Israel
Date:
[ca. 1929]-1980
Scope and Contents:
Correspondence, business files, academic papers, photographs, clippings, sketchbook, sketches, and miscellaneous notes.
REEL 581: Selected items from 2 family scrapbooks, 1933-1943 and 1946-1956; including clippings, photographs, correspondence, invitations and awards. Most material pertains to Plaut's work as director of the ICA and advisor to the government of Israel. Also included are correspondence from Georges Rouault, Carl Milles, and Oskar Kokoschka; and 6 drawings by Waldo Peirce.
REEL 5139: Two family scrapbooks, 1956-1959 and 1960-1980, containing clippings, invitations, photographs and miscellaneous material from Plaut's work World's Fairs at Brussels, 1958, New York, 1964 and Japan, 1970. Also found are family snapshots of the Plaut's travels, their children and grandchildren and include 7 earlier photographs of Plaut and his parents, ca. 1906-1932, and one photograph of Eleanor Roosevelt, 1959.
UNMICROFILMED: Travel sketchbook of Rome; term papers, honors thesis, and sketches for an architectural history course; files relating to Plaut's positions at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the ICA, the World Crafts Council, and other professional and personal concerns; correspondence, including letters from Eugene Berman, Carl Milles, Lincoln Kirstein, Paul Sachs and others; personal and work related photographs; lecture notes; slides from the World's Craft Fair Council, 1974; 2 untranscribed sound tape reels of an interview made by Plaut for Alfred Auerbach concerning the Brussels World's Fair 1958 and typed list of questions for the interview; and miscellaneous papers.
ADDITION: Resumes and obituaries; correspondence; the book, Waldo Peirce, by Margit Varga, 1941, with insertions of a caricature by Peirce, illustrated postcards, and a letter; photographs of Walter Gropius House, Lincoln, Mass. and 7 photographs of Plaut with Frank Lloyd Wright, Walter Gropius, Marcel Breuer, Konrad Adenauer, Indira Gandhi, Leonard Bernstein, and Dwight David Eisenhower; scrapbook and slides pertaining to Plaut's work for the World's Fair, Brussels, 1958; writings and publications; publications of the ICA and the WCC; the book, The Overcoat, by Nikoli Gogel, presented to Plaut upon retirement from the WCC; publications by others on art and design; and a file on James and Mary Plaut's personal art collection, ca. 1935-1990s.
Biographical / Historical:
Art administrator and museum director; Boston, Mass. Plaut was born to a wealthy family in Cincinnati, Ohio, graduated from HarvardCollege, and received an M.A. from Harvard University. His uncle was Paul Sachs, a connoisseur and influential museology professor at Harvard andsor. Plaut held curatorial positions at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and became Director of Boston's Institute of Modern Art in 1939 (later the Institute of Contemporary Art or ICA) where he staged early exhibitions of contemporary design and European avant-garde paintings and sculpture until his resignation in 1956. Plaut was also involved in many international exhibitions and expositions, serving as Deputy U.S. Commissioner to the World's Fair in Brussels, 1958, and was Secretary General of the World Crafts Council, 1967-1976 and a consultant on industrial design in Israel.
Provenance:
Scrapbooks on reel 581 lent for microfilming by Plaut, 1973; his estate, via the executor Edward M. Condit, Jr., lent those on reel 5139 in 1996. Plaut donated the unmicrofilmed material in 1985 and 1992, and additional papers were received as a bequest in 1996 via the executor of his estate.
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.
Occupation:
Arts administrators -- Massachusetts -- Boston  Search this
Museum directors -- Massachusetts -- Boston  Search this
Function:
Art museums -- Massachusetts -- Boston
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Scrapbooks
Sketchbooks
Sound recordings
Identifier:
AAA.plaujame
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9200dfcc5-4152-4511-ac15-312e1d323e18
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-plaujame

Pete Schiwetz papers

Creator:
Schiwetz, Pete, 1909-  Search this
Names:
Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Bearzi, Bruno  Search this
Christ-Janer, Albert, 1910-1973  Search this
Coe, Herring, 1907-  Search this
Hedmark, Anne  Search this
McVey, William Mozart, 1905-1995  Search this
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Milles, Olga Granner, 1874-1967  Search this
Rich, Frances  Search this
West, Clifford B.  Search this
Extent:
2 Linear feet ((on 3 microfilm reels))
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Date:
1939-1971
Scope and Contents:
Ca. 2,000 letters, including correspondence with family, bronze caster Bruno Bearzi, Carl and Olga Milles, curator Anne Hedmark (at Millesgarden in Stockholm), Clifford West, William McVey, Francis Rich, Herring Coe, Albert Christ-Janer, and others; business correspondence regarding his fountain at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, "Symbol of the Arts," and other projects; biographical sketch; catalogs; legal and financial papers; and miscellaneous printed materials.
Biographical / Historical:
Sculptor; Birmingham, Michigan. Was an assistant to Carl Milles. Nicknamed "Tex".
Other Title:
Microfilm title: Berthold Schiwetz papers
Provenance:
Donated 1973 by LeRoy Dahlberg, Schiwetz's attorney.
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.
Topic:
Sculpture, Modern -- 20th century -- History -- Michigan  Search this
Identifier:
AAA.schipete
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9e05b1f36-081a-42e1-8166-6a12f3b5a1c4
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-schipete

Lilian Swann Saarinen papers

Creator:
Saarinen, Lilian Swann, 1912-1995  Search this
Names:
Cambridge Art Center  Search this
Cranbrook Academy of Art -- Faculty  Search this
G Place Gallery (Washington, D.C.)  Search this
Knoll Associates, inc.  Search this
Massachusetts Institute of Technology -- Faculty  Search this
Midtown Galleries (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Otava Publishing Company  Search this
Reynal & Hitchcock  Search this
Armitage, Merle, 1893-1975  Search this
Crosby, Caresse, 1892-  Search this
Eames, Charles  Search this
Eames, Ray  Search this
Koch, Carl  Search this
Kreis, Henry, 1899-1963  Search this
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Moholy-Nagy, László, 1895-1946  Search this
Moholy-Nagy, Sibyl, 1905-  Search this
Saarinen, Eero, 1910-1961  Search this
Saarinen, Eliel, 1873-1950  Search this
Saarinen, Loja  Search this
Venturi, Robert  Search this
Weese, Harry, 1915-1998  Search this
Extent:
9 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Blueprints
Diaries
Illustrations
Sketches
Photographs
Scrapbooks
Date:
circa 1909-1977
Summary:
The papers of Cambridge sculptor and illustrator, Lilian Swann Saarinen, measure nine linear feet and date from circa 1909 to 1977. The collection documents Saarinen's career through correspondence with artists, architects, publishers, and gallery owners; writings and notes, including manuscripts and illustrations for children's books and publications; project and teaching files; financial records; artwork, including numerous project sketches; and photos of Saarinen and her artwork. Saarinen's personal life is also documented through diaries and correspondence with friends and family members, including Eero Saarinen, to whom she was married from 1939-1953.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of Cambridge sculptor and illustrator, Lilian Swann Saarinen, measure nine linear feet and date from circa 1909 to 1977. The collection documents Saarinen's career through correspondence with artists, architects, publishers, and gallery owners; writings and notes, including manuscripts and illustrations for children's books and publications; project and teaching files; financial records; artwork, including numerous project sketches; and photos of Saarinen and her artwork. Saarinen's personal life is also documented through diaries and correspondence with friends and family members, including Eero Saarinen, to whom she was married from 1939-1953.

Biographical material consists of resumes and biographical sketches, as well as a 1951 blueprint for the Eero Saarinen and Associates Office Building in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.

Correspondence documents Saarinen's personal and professional life through letters to and from Eero Saarinen and other family members, including six letters from Loja Saarinen; correspondence with artists and architects, including Merle Armitage, Charles and Ray Eames, Carl Koch, Henry Kreis, Carl Milles, Laszlo and Sibyl Moholy-Nagy, Robert Venturi, and Harry Weese; and friends and colleagues at the Cranbrook Academy of Art and Knoll Associates. Also documented is Saarinen's business relationship with Midtown Galleries and Caresse Crosby, and publishers and publications including Child Life, Interiors, Otava Publishing Company, and Reynal & Hitchcock, Inc.

Writings and Notes document Saarinen's work on several children's publications, including Picture Book Zoo (1935) and Who Am I? (1946), through correspondence, notes, manuscript drafts, and extensive sketches. This series also includes Saarinen's ideas for other publications and incorporates some early writings and notes, as well as typescripts of her reminiscences about Eliel Saarinen, the Saarinen family, and the Cranbrook Academy of Art.

Diaries consist of bound diary volumes, loose-leaf journal entries, and heavily annotated engagement calendars, documenting Saarinen's personal life, artistic aspirations, and career development from the 1930s-1970s. This material provides a deeply personal view of the emotional landscape of Saarinen's life, her struggles to balance her identity as a working artist with the roles of wife, mother, and homemaker, and the complex, and often competing, relationships within the renowned architectural family into which she married.

Project files document Saarinen's work on book cover designs, federal and post office commissions in Bloomfield, Indiana, Carlisle, Kentucky, and Evanston, Illinois, reliefs for the Crow Island School in Winnetka, Illinois, and other important commissions including the Harbor National Bank Clock in Boston, Massachusetts, the KLM Airlines installation at JFK Airport, the Fountain of Noah sculpture at the Northland Center in Detroit, Michigan, and the interior of Toffenetti's restaurant in Chicago, Illinois. Also documented is her role in designs for the Gateway Arch in St. Louis, with Eero Saarinen.

Teaching files document Saarinen's "Language of Clay Course" which she taught at Cambridge Art Center and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Financial records document exhibition and sales expenses for two exhibitions, including her show at G Place Gallery in 1944.

Printed material consists of clippings about Saarinen and her family, exhibition announcements and catalogs for herself and others, and reference files from the 1930s-1940s, primarily comprising clippings of animals.

Additional printed material documenting Saarinen's career can be found in one of two scrapbooks found in the collection. An additional scrapbook consists of clippings relating primarily to Saarinen's parents.

Artwork comprises extensive sketches, particularly animal and figure sketches, in graphite, crayon, ink, pastel, and watercolor. The sketches demonstrate in particular Saarinen's developing interest in and skill with animal portraiture from her childhood to the 1960s.

Photographs are primarily of artwork and Saarinen's 1944 exhibition at G Place Gallery. Also found are one negative of Saarinen, probably with Eero Saarinen, and a group photo including Lilian, Eero, and Eliel Saarinen with the model for the Detroit Civic Center, circa 1940s.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 11 series.

Missing Title

Series 1: Biographical Material, circa 1930s-1960s (3 folders; Box 1, OV 12)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1920-1974 (1.9 linear feet; Boxes 1-2, 8, OV 12)

Series 3: Writings and Notes, 1920s-1973 (1.3 linear feet, Boxes 2-3, 8, OVs 13-16)

Series 4: Diaries, 1930-1973 (1.4 linear feet, Boxes 3-5, 8)

Series 5: Project Files, 1931-1966 (1.7 linear feet, Boxes 5-6, 8, OVs 17-19)

Series 6: Teaching Files, 1966-1970 (3 folders, Box 6)

Series 7: Financial Records, 1940s-1970s (2 folders, Box 6)

Series 8: Printed Material, circa 1930s-1970s (0.2 linear feet, Box 6)

Series 9: Scrapbooks, circa 1909-1974 (2 folders; Boxes 6, 9)

Series 10: Artwork, circa 1920s-circa 1960s (1.7 linear feet, Boxes 6-7, 9-10, OVs 20-27)

Series 11: Photographs, circa 1940s, 1977 (0.5 linear feet, Boxes 7, 11, OV 27)
Biographical / Historical:
Cambridge artist and sculptor, Lilian Swann Saarinen (1912-1995), studied at the Art Students League with Alexander Archipenko in 1928, and later with Albert Stewart and Heninz Warneke from 1934-1936, before moving to Michigan where she studied with Carl Milles at the Cranbrook Academy of Art from 1936-1940. Saarinen was an accomplished skier and a member of the 1936 US Olympic ski team.

At Cranbrook, Swann met architect Eero Saarinen, whom she married in 1939. She subsequently worked with Saarinen's design group on a variety of projects, including the Westward Expansion Memorial, which later became known as the "Gateway Arch" in St. Louis. Lilian and Eero had a son, Eric, and a daughter, Susie, before divorcing in 1953.

Saarinen, who had developed an affinity for drawing animals in childhood, specialized in animal portraits in a variety of sculptural media. In 1939, she exhibited her sculpture Night, which depicted Bagheera the panther from Rudyard Kipling's Jungle Book, at the World's Fair. The sculpture was placed in the Boston Public Garden in 1986. In the 1930s and 1940s Saarinen was commissioned to work on a variety of architectural projects, including reliefs for post offices in Bloomfield, Indiana, Carlisle, Kentucky, and Evanston, Illinois, and the Crow Island School in Winnetka, Illinois. She also executed commissions for the Harbor National Bank in Boston, KLM (Royal Dutch Airlines) at JFK Airport, the Northland shopping Center in Detroit Michigan, and Toffenetti's Restaurant in Chicago.

Saarinen was a contributing author and illustrator for a variety of publications, including Child Life, Interiors and Portfolio: An Intercontinental Quarterly. In 1935 she illustrated Picture Book Zoo for the Bronx Zoo and in 1946 Reynal & Hitchcock, Inc. published Who Am I?, a children's book which Saarinen wrote and illustrated.

Saarinen taught ceramic sculpture to soldiers for the Red Cross Arts and Skills Unit rehabilitation program in 1945, served on the Visiting Committee to the Museum School at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, from 1959-1964, where she taught ceramics, and later taught a course entitled "The Language of Clay" at the Cambridge Art Center and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. One of Saarinen's private students at Cambridge was her cousin, Edie Sedgwick.

Saarinen died in Cohasset, Massachusetts, in 1995 at the age of 83.
Separated Materials:
The Archives of American Art also holds material lent for microfilming (reels 1152 and 1192) including a scrapbook containing clippings, copies of letters and telegrams received, and reproductions of Saarinen's work. There is a copy of Saarinen's book, "Who Am I?", and three albums containing photographs of Saarinen, photographs and reproductions of her work, a list of exhibitions, quotes about her, and writings by her about sculpture. Lent material was returned to the lender and is not described in the collection container inventory.
Provenance:
Lilian Swann Saarinen donated the collection in 1975. She lent additional materials for microfilming in 1976.
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.
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:
Sculptors -- Massachusetts -- Cambridge  Search this
Topic:
Women artists  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Illustrated books, Children's  Search this
Gateway Arch (Saint Louis, Mo.)  Search this
Sculpture, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
Illustrators -- Massachusetts  Search this
Art, Municipal  Search this
Women sculptors  Search this
Women illustrators  Search this
Function:
Art commissions
Genre/Form:
Blueprints
Diaries
Illustrations
Sketches
Photographs
Scrapbooks
Citation:
Lilian Swann Saarinen papers, circa 1909-1977. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.saarlili
See more items in:
Lilian Swann Saarinen papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw97f1e4305-3886-479a-9db7-48c98fd8d2dd
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-saarlili
Online Media:

Albert Kahn papers

Creator:
Kahn, Albert, 1869-1942  Search this
Names:
Bacon, Henry, 1839-1912  Search this
Barlow, Myron, 1873-1937  Search this
Kahlo, Frida  Search this
Kahn, Ernestine Krolik  Search this
Mason, George D.  Search this
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Rivera, Diego, 1886-1957  Search this
Stoughton, Arthur A.  Search this
Toscanini, Arturo, 1867-1957  Search this
Trowbridge, Alexander Buell, 1868-1950  Search this
Extent:
7.02 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Diaries
Watercolors
Scrapbooks
Renderings
Lithographs
Photographs
Motion pictures (visual works)
Notebooks
Drawings
Sound recordings
Awards
Sketchbooks
Etchings
Notes
Typescripts
Lectures
Date:
1875-1970
Summary:
The papers of architect Albert Kahn date from 1875-1970, bulk 1875-1945, and measure 7.02 linear feet. Found within the papers is biographical material, correspondence, personal business records, nine sketchbooks, art work, notes and writings, two scrapbooks, printed material, photographs and photograph albums, artifacts, and motion picture film.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of architect Albert Kahn date from 1875-1970, bulk 1875-1945, and measure 7.02 linear feet. Found within the papers are biographical material, correspondence, personal business records, nine sketchbooks, art work, notes and writings, two scrapbooks, printed material, photographs and photograph albums, artifacts, a sound recording and motion picture film.

Biographical material includes a biographical account, marriage certificate, architect's licenses, calling cards for the Kahns, passports, identification cards, letters of introduction, award certificates and medals, membership cards and certificates, a sound recording concerning Albert Kahn's life, and an address book.

Correspondence consists of letters between Albert Kahn, family members, and colleagues including Myron Barlow, George D. Mason, Carl Milles and Arthur A. Stoughton. There is one letter each from Henry Bacon and Alexander Trowbridge, and condolence letters to Kahn's widow.

Personal business records include records of stocks and income, lists of expenses and receipts for construction, property records, price lists for paintings by others, and miscellaneous receipts.

Art work includes nine sketchbooks and drawings by Albert Kahn, a paper silhouette portrait of Kahn, and drawings, watercolors, etchings, lithographs, and a sketchbook of Cornwall by others.

Notes and writings include Ernestine Kahn's diary, notebooks, guest registers and records concerning Albert Kahn's funeral, and typescripts of speeches and lectures.

Two scrapbooks contain clippings, small drawings, photographs of architecture, and letters of tribute.

Printed material includes clippings, exhibition catalogs for others, programs, booklets, books, reproductions of art work, travel brochures, picture postcards, and miscellaneous printed material.

Photographs are of Albert Kahn, members of his family, and colleagues including Myron Barlow, Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, Arturo Toscanini, residences, and travel scenes. Moving images include five reels of 16mm motion picture film of the Kahn family at the farm and at various family gatherings.

Artifacts primarily consist of the tools used by Albert Kahn during his career including t-squares and portable tripod supports for drawing boards used on construction sites.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 9 series. Glass plate negative housed separately and closed to researchers.

Missing Title

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1896-1945 (Box 1, 6, OV 10; 19 folders)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1891-1970 (Box 1-3, 6; 3.3 linear feet)

Series 3: Personal Business Records, 1891-1943 (Box 3; 7 folders)

Series 4: Art Work, 1890-1936 (Box 3, 6, OV 11-12; 20 folders)

Series 5: Notes and Writings, 1899-1943 (Box 3-4; 29 folders)

Series 6: Scrapbooks, 1890-1942 (Box 7; 0.3 linear feet)

Series 7: Printed Material, 1897-1968 (Box 4-6, OV 10; 0.8 linear feet)

Series 8: Photographs and Moving Images, 1875-1944 (Box 5-6, 8, FC 13-17, MGP 2; 1.5 linear feet)

Series 9: Artifacts, circa 1942 (Box 5, 9; 0.4 linear feet)
Biographical Note:
Albert Kahn (1869-1942) of Detroit, Michigan, was an architect, primarily known for designing industrial buildings with the pioneering use of reinforced concrete that allowed large unobstructed interiors.

Albert Kahn was born on March 21, 1869 in Rhaunen, Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany, the oldest son of rabbi Joseph Kahn and Rosalie Cohn Kahn. The family immigrated to the United States in 1881 and settled in Detroit, Michigan.

Albert Kahn worked as an office boy in an architect's office and studied drawing in Sunday classes conducted by sculptor Julius Melchers. Melchers found Kahn a position in the architectural offices of Mason and Rice where he worked for several years. In 1890, Kahn won a scholarship to travel in Europe to study architecture and in 1895 he opened his own architectural office, Albert Kahn Associates, hiring his younger brothers, Louis, Moritz, and Felix. In the following year, Kahn married Ernestine Krolik.

In 1903, Kahn was awarded his first two important commissions: to design the University of Michigan's engineering building and the Palm Apartments in Detroit, built with the early use of reinforced concrete. In the following year, he built the first reinforced concrete factory for the Packard Motor Company. Because of the industrial growth in Detroit at that time, Kahn was in demand to design various automobile factories including the General Motors Building, textile, business machine, and chemical plants. He became an authority on concrete construction and by the beginning of the First World War, his firm provided construction for the military aviation section of the Army.

Kahn later moved from using concrete to steel and glass. In 1927, his company finished a large building for the Fisher Brothers of Detroit for which he was awarded a medal by the Architectural League of New York for the year's outstanding contribution to architecture. In the following year his firm was given full charge of the entire heavy industrial building program of Russia's first five-year plan, and they constructed an estimated two billion dollars worth of factories in Russia.

During World War II, Kahn's firm was constantly busy constructing naval air bases, airplane engine plants, tank arsenals including the Detroit Arsenal Tank Plant, and other government defense projects. In June 1942 Kahn was given the honorary degree of Doctor of Fine Arts by Syracuse University.

Albert Kahn died on December 8, 1942 in Detroit, Michigan.
Provenance:
The Albert Kahn papers were donated by Kahn's children, Mrs. Lydia Winston Malbin, Mrs. Rosalie Butzel, and Dr. Edgar A. Kahn, in 1974.
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.
Topic:
Architecture, American  Search this
Architects -- Michigan -- Detroit  Search this
Genre/Form:
Diaries
Watercolors
Scrapbooks
Renderings
Lithographs
Photographs
Motion pictures (visual works)
Notebooks
Drawings
Sound recordings
Awards
Sketchbooks
Etchings
Notes
Typescripts
Lectures
Citation:
Albert Kahn papers, 1875-1970. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.kahnalbp
See more items in:
Albert Kahn papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw998c9d20d-7eac-4264-8dd4-21511423e9a1
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-kahnalbp
Online Media:

Florence Knoll Bassett papers

Creator:
Knoll, Florence, 1917-2019  Search this
Names:
Cranbrook Academy of Art  Search this
Cranbrook Kingswood School (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.)  Search this
Hans G. Knoll Furniture Company  Search this
Knoll Associates, inc.  Search this
Knoll International, inc.  Search this
Cheek, Leslie, 1908-  Search this
Eames, Charles  Search this
Gandhi, Indira, 1917-1984  Search this
Graham, Katharine, 1917-  Search this
Helm, John  Search this
Johnson, Philip, 1906-2005  Search this
Knoll, Walter C.  Search this
Miller, R. Craig  Search this
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Raseman, Rachel de Wolfe  Search this
Reagan, Nancy, 1923-  Search this
Saarinen, Eero, 1910-1961  Search this
Saarinen, Eliel, 1873-1950  Search this
Slavin, Maeve  Search this
Extent:
2 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Sketches
Drawings
Photographs
Sketchbooks
Date:
1932-2000
Summary:
The papers of architect and designer Florence Knoll Bassett, measure approximately 2 linear feet dating from 1932 to 2000. Through correspondence, sketches, drawings, designs, subject files, photographs, and printed material, the collection selectively documents Knoll Bassett's education, her work with Knoll Associates from the 1940s until her resignation in 1965, and projects undertaken since her retirement. It is an important source of information on the development of interior architecture and design from the 1940s to the 1970s.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of architect, and interior designer and planner Florence Knoll Bassett, measure approximately 2 linear feet dating from 1932 to 2000. The collection selectively documents Knoll Bassett's education and her career at Knoll Associates, Inc. from the 1940s until her resignation in 1965, in addition to personal design projects and other activities after leaving the company. It is an important source of information on the development of interior architecture and design from the 1940s to the 1970s, chronicling the Knoll mission to synthesize space, furniture, and design by creating interiors based on practical use, comfort, and aesthetics.

The collection documents the growth of Knoll's international reputation for its modern furnishings and interiors and the impact of a business philosophy that encompassed design excellence, technological innovation, and mass production. The material includes a chronology of Knoll Bassett's career; a portfolio of sketches, drawings and designs; photographs of Knoll Bassett and others; subject files containing sketches and photographic material; letters from friends, colleagues, clients and others; awards received by Knoll Bassett throughout her career; and printed material.

Much of the material is annotated with historical and biographical notes written by Knoll Bassett which provide invaluable contextual information for the materials found therein. The notes are dated 1999 in the Container Listing, under the assumption that they were written by Florence Knoll Bassett as she was arranging her archival papers.
Arrangement:
Before donating her papers to the Archives of American Art, Knoll Bassett organized the material in portfolios and color-coded files and designed four containers for them. Because the method of arrangement in itself provides insight into Knoll Bassett's style and creativity the collection has been minimally processed with the addition of acid-free materials for preservation reasons and the transcription of labels which may, over time, become detached. The original order of the collection has been retained throughout.

The collection was organized into what Bassett termed "storage units," the first container being divided into three units and the collection as a whole being divided into six units. Knoll Bassett supplied a detailed inventory of the contents of each container and the subjects represented in each porfolio or folder. Subject headings from this inventory have been used in the Series Description/Container Listing. Knoll Bassett also supplied a vita summarizing her career and copies of this, and her original container inventory are enclosed with the collection and can be consulted at AAA's research center in Washington D.C.

The collection is arranged as seven series. These series represent the categories into which Knoll Bassett organized the material, with the exception that Letters and Awards are presented as two series in the finding aid. Most of the items in Series 1 to 4 are presented as portfolios in spiral-bound notebooks and the remainder of the collection is organized in folders.

Missing Title

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1932-1999 (Box 1; 1 portfolio)

Series 2: Selected Publications, 1946-1990, 1999 (Box 1; 1 portfolio)

Series 3: Drawings, Sketches, and Designs, 1932-1984, 1999 (Boxes 1-2; 2 portfolios)

Series 4: Photographs and Printed Material, 1956-1997, 1999 (Box 2; 1 portfolio)

Series 5: Subject Files, circa 1930s-1999 (Box 3; 1.0 linear ft.)

Series 6: Letters, circa 1930s-2000 (Box 4; 7 folders)

Series 7: Awards, 1954-1999 (Box 4; 6 folders)
Biographical Note:
Florence Knoll Bassett (1917-2019) was born Florence Schust and was affectionately known as Shu by her colleagues and friends. She was orphaned at age 12 and then cared for by Emile Tessin, a friend of the family whom her mother had appointed as Florence's legal guardian in the event of her death. When arrangements were being made for Florence to attend boarding school she was given the opportunity to make the selection. Kingswood School in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, held a strong aesthetic appeal for her and she "made an immediate decision that it was the right place for me," beginning her architectural studies under the school's art director, Rachel de Wolfe Raseman.

At Kingswood Knoll Bassett met the Saarinen family, studying under Eliel Saarinen and developing her interest in texture and color through her friendship with Loja Saarinen who supervised the school's weaving studio. Following Florence's graduation from Kingswood in 1934, Eliel Saarinen encouraged her to spend some time at Cranbrook Academy of Art before attending an accredited architecture school. She spent the next two years at Cranbrook working closely with advanced students and artists such as the Saarinens and Carl Milles, and gaining experience in all aspects of design.

Knoll Bassett then studied for two years at the Architectural Association in London, spending summers with the Saarinens in Europe. She completed her formal training at the Illinois Institute of Technology where she studied under Mies van der Rohe, whom she credits with having "a profound effect on my design approach and the clarification of design."

After graduation Knoll Bassett worked for architecture firms in Boston and New York where she met Hans Knoll who was then in the process of establishing a furniture business. In 1943 she began working for him in her spare time as an interior space planner and designer. In 1946 the two were married and formed Knoll Associates, Inc.

As director of the Knoll Planning Unit, Knoll Bassett established herself as one of the most important and influential interior planners and designers of the second half of the twentieth century. Believing that intelligent design "strikes at the root of living requirements and changing habits," she established the practice of working closely with the corporate sector to determine the needs of the people who would actually use the spaces that her company designed. Her connections with leading contemporary architects and designers, and the company's commitment to crediting designers by name and paying them royalties, laid the foundations for the strong working relationships upon which the commercial success of Knoll Associates was built. Drawing on a pool of top architects and designers, many of whom were personal friends, Knoll Bassett directed the company's Bauhaus approach, incorporating design excellence, technological innovation, and mass production in a seamless package of "total design."

While Knoll Bassett oversaw the creative process of the Planning Unit's operations in its entirety, she was also directly responsible for many of the individual elements used in the Unit's projects. During the war years, she worked with her designers to overcome the scarcity of materials, establishing Knoll Textiles in response to the dearth of available fabrics and textile colors, and developing the company's hallmark style of spare clean lines and vibrant colors in a functional, comfortable, and aesthetically appealing space. Finding that much of the "fill-in" furniture, primarily cabinetry, that she envisaged in many of her plans was not available, Knoll Bassett designed the pieces herself. She used the Knoll showrooms as "experimental laboratories" to convince clients to use modern ideas and materials, showcasing and putting into production the classic designs of people such as Eero Saarinen, Mies van der Rohe, Jens Risom, Harry Bertoia, Isamu Noguchi, and Marcel Breuer.

After the war Knoll Associates expanded to Europe through a series of government contracts which resulted ultimately in the formation of Knoll International. When Hans Knoll died suddenly in an automobile accident in 1955 Florence became president of the company. She married Harry Hood Bassett in 1958 and began to divide her time between New York and Florida. In 1959 she sold her interest in Knoll Associates to Art Metal and retired as President of the company the following year, while continuing to work as a consultant and serving as Design Director. In 1961 she became the first woman to be awarded the Gold Medal for Industrial Design by the American Institute of Architects, one of many awards received over the course of her career. In 1965 she resigned from Knoll Associates entirely after completing the interior design for the CBS headquarters in New York.

Following her retirement Knoll Bassett devoted more time to private commissions and other interests such as her campaign against billboards in Miami in the mid 1980s. She spent summers in Vermont and winters in Florida with her husband, until his death in 1991. In July 2001, Metropolis magazine published a rare interview with Knoll Bassett in which she reflects upon the life she so skillfully documented in the extraordinary gift of her archival papers to the Archives of American Art.
Provenance:
The collection was donated to the Archives of American Art by Florence Knoll Bassett in 2000.
Restrictions:
The collection is open for research. Use requires an appointment.
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:
Architects -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Designers -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Furniture designers -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Topic:
Interior decoration firms  Search this
Interior decoration  Search this
Industrial design  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Women architects  Search this
Women designers  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sketches
Drawings
Photographs
Sketchbooks
Citation:
Florence Knoll Bassett papers, 1932-2000. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.knolflor
See more items in:
Florence Knoll Bassett papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw92a5be5e6-2fa4-4ce3-ae1d-b36626e44ddc
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-knolflor
Online Media:

Israel and Idee Levitan papers

Creator:
Levitan, Israel, 1912-1982  Search this
Levitan, Idee  Search this
Names:
Armitage, Merle, 1893-1975  Search this
Aronson, James.  Search this
De Kooning, Elaine  Search this
Dearstyne, Howard.  Search this
Dreier, Katherine Sophie, 1877-1952  Search this
Helm, Lillian  Search this
Kline, Svea  Search this
Koff, Noah  Search this
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Extent:
0.2 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Date:
[ca.1946-1982]
Scope and Contents:
Correspondence, a photograph, and printed material documenting Israel and Idee Levitan's involvement in the New York art community after WWII. Correspondence includes letters from Elaine de Kooning, Katherine Dreier, Noah Koff, Merle Armitage, Howard Dearstyne, James Aronson, and others and one letter from the Levitans to Howard Dearstyne. The photographs are of Carl Milles, Svea Kline, and Lillian Helm. Among the printed material are exhibition announcements, including one for a faculty exhibition at the Parsons School of Design featuring Elaine de Kooning in 1976 and various newspaper clippings, including an obituary for Amedee Ozenfant.
Biographical / Historical:
Sculptors, New York, N.Y.
Provenance:
Donated 2007 by Mark Borghi, gallery owner and art dealer, Mark Borghi Fine Arts. Borghi purchased the papers from the Levitan estate in 2006.
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.
Occupation:
Sculptors -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Identifier:
AAA.leviisra2
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw99a2e205d-c8fa-483f-abce-b49a7155fc61
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-leviisra2

Janet deCoux papers

Creator:
deCoux, Janet, 1904-1999  Search this
Names:
Guild of Liturgy, Art and Design  Search this
Liturgical Arts Society  Search this
Fraser, James Earle, 1876-1953  Search this
Fraser, Laura Gardin, 1889-1966  Search this
Gurney, George  Search this
Jennewein, Carl Paul, 1890-  Search this
Lindbergh, Anne Morrow, 1906-2001  Search this
Manship, Paul, 1885-1966  Search this
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Moore, Bruce, 1905-1980  Search this
Extent:
3.92 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Sketchbooks
Drawings
Poetry
Interviews
Sound recordings
Date:
1895-2000
Summary:
The papers of sculptor Janet DeCoux date from 1895-2000 and measure 3.92 linear feet. The collection documents DeCoux's career through scattered biographical material, correspondence, audio cassette tapes of an autobiographical narrative, an interview transcript, miscellaneous notes and writings, sketchbooks and drawings, files for commissioned sculpture projects, printed material, photographs of DeCoux, family members, friends, colleagues, and artwork.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of sculptor Janet deCoux measure 3.92 linear feet and date from 1895 to 2000. Found within the papers are scattered biographical material, including curriculum vitae and a file concerning deCoux's induction as a Distinguished Daughter of Pennsylvania. Correspondence is primarily between family, friends, and colleagues. It includes letters from Carl Milles, Bruce Moore, C.P. Jennewein, the Guild of Liturgy, Art and Design (GLAD), the Liturgical Arts Society, Inc., sculptor James Earle Fraser, offering advice on various sculpture projects, his wife Laura Gardin Fraser, a letter of congratulations from Paul Manship on the occasion of deCoux's election to the National Academy of Design, and approximately fifty letters, 1944-1952, from Anne Morrow Lindbergh, writer and wife of aviator Charles Lindbergh. There are also one or two letters from Lu Duble, Joseph Bailey Ellis, Mark Tobey, and Albert Wein.

Found within the papers are a transcript of an interview of deCoux by George Gurney, and audio cassettes with transcripts of an autobiographical narrative by deCoux. Miscellaneous notes and writings include autobiographical accounts and poems by deCoux and miscellaneous writings by others. Seven of deCoux's sketchbooks and a folder of drawings by deCoux, as well as a portrait of deCoux by C. Paul Jennewein are found in the Artwork series. Project files contain letters, receipts, clippings, brochures, and photographs for sculpture projects primarily commissioned by religious organizations. Printed material includes clippings, exhibition catalogs, and miscellaneous brochures. Photographs are of deCoux, family members, friends including Anne Morrow Lindbergh and her children, colleagues including James Earle Fraser, Laura Gardin Fraser, Carl Milles, and Bruce Moore, and sculpture.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 8 series. Glass plate negative housed separately and closed to researchers.

Missing Title

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1895-1993 (Box 1; 13 folders)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1895-2000 (Boxes 1-2; 1.0 linear feet)

Series 3: Interviews, 1978, 1990 (Box 2; 3 folders)

Series 4: Notes and Writings, 1937-1996 (Box 2; 23 folders)

Series 5: Artwork, 1928-1929 (Boxes 2, 6; 9 folders)

Series 6: Project Files, 1942-1982 (Boxes 2-3, 6; 36 folders)

Series 7: Printed Material, 1906-2000 (Box 3; 20 folders)

Series 8: Photographs, 1926-1996 (Boxes 3-6, MGP 1; 1.3 linear feet)
Biographical Note:
Janet deCoux was born on October 5, 1904 in Niles, Michigan, the youngest of the five children of Bertha Wright deCoux and Rev. Charles John deCoux, an Episcopal clergyman. The family moved to Grand Rapids in 1908 and four years later to a farm in Gibsonia, outside Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

deCoux studied with Joseph Bailey Ellis at the Carnegie Institute of Technology from 1925 to 1927. She then apprenticed in the New York studio of C. Paul Jennewein for fifteen months, followed by a year at the Gorham Bronze Division learning architectural modeling. She also worked with Aristide Cianfarani in Providence, and for Alvin Meyer in Chicago. While serving her apprenticeships, she attended night school at the New York School of Industrial Arts, the Rhode Island School of Design, and the Art Institute of Chicago. deCoux was then employed in James Earle Fraser's studio where she had previously assisted Gozo Kawamura.

In 1932 deCoux met Eliza Miller in the sculpture department of Carnegie Tech, beginning a sixty-year relationship in which they shared a shop and adjoining studios in Gibsonia, Pennsylvania. For several months in 1935, deCoux traveled to Germany, Italy, and Switzerland, where she joined her friend Aly Moore, the wife of sculptor Bruce Moore. She first met longtime friend Father Hughson on a ship returning to the United States from Europe.

A Guggenheim Fellowship awarded to deCoux in 1938 was renewed for a second year. In 1943, she became resident instructor at Cranbrook Academy of Art.

Janet deCoux died in December 1999.
Related Material:
Also found in the Archives of American Art is an oral history interview with Janet deCoux done by George Gurney, May 5, 1978.
Provenance:
The Janet deCoux papers were donated in 1992 by the artist and in two later installments in 2000-2001 by her longtime companion, Eliza Miller.
Restrictions:
The collection is open for research. Use requires an appointment.
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:
Sculptors -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia  Search this
Educators -- Michigan  Search this
Topic:
Women artists  Search this
Women sculptors  Search this
Women educators  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Sketchbooks
Drawings
Poetry
Interviews
Sound recordings
Citation:
Janet deCoux papers, 1895-2000. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.decojane
See more items in:
Janet deCoux papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw98daf965e-678f-497b-b3b2-d226ef0a5bf9
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-decojane
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Marianna Pineda

Interviewee:
Pineda, Marianna, 1925-1996  Search this
Interviewer:
Brown, Robert F.  Search this
Names:
Cranbrook Academy of Art  Search this
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Extent:
1 Item (tape reel (2 hr., 7 min.))
51 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1977 May 26-June 14
Scope and Contents:
Interview of Marianna Pineda, conducted by Robert Brown for the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, in Brookline, Massachusetts, on June 14 and May 26, 1977.
Pineda speaks of her childhood in Chicago; travels to Europe with her mother; early encounters with sculpture and architecture at the Chicago World's Fair; studying at the Otis Art Institute, Cranbrook, and Columbia University; meeting and marrying her husband Harold Tovish; living and working in Paris, Minneapolis, and Italy; how having children affected her work; teaching at Newton College and Boston University; showing at the Swetzoff Gallery in Boston; sculpting in wood, plaster, wax, and bronze; work with the Boston Visual Artists' Union; and various of her works, including the Oracle series, the Bed series, An Effigy for the Young Lovers, Sleepwalker, and The Dance of Sleep or Death. Pineda also recalls Carl Milles, Ossip Zadkine, William Zorach, David Smith, Simon Moselsio, Oronzio Maldarelli, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Marianna Pineda (1925-1996) was a sculptor and educator from Boston, Massachusetts. Pineda studied at Cranbrook Academy with Carl Milles, Bennington College with Simon Moselsio, University of California, Berkley, with Raymond Puccinelli, Columbia University with Oronzio Maldarelli, and in Paris with Ossip Zadkine. She met her future husband while studying at Columbia, fellow sculptor Harold Tovish. Pineda exhibited her work in group exhibitions held at Brooklyn Museum, New York, Museum of Modern Art, New York, and the Carnegie Institute, Pennsylvania, and had solo shows at the Honolulu Academy of Art, Hawaii, Walker Art Center, Minnesota, George Washington University, Washington, D.C., and Swetzoff Gallery, Boston. Her public commissions include a 6-foot bronze sculpture, The Spirit of Lili'oukalani, located in Honolulu, Hawaii. Pineda's sculptures are found in the permanent collections of the Boston Public Library, Walker Art Center, Fogg Art Museum, Munson-Williams-Proctor Institute, and others. Pineda was an instructor at Newton College of the Sacred Heart and Boston College, and was an adjunct professor of sculpture at Boston University.
General:
Originally recorded on 1 tape reel. Reformatted in 2010 as 2 digital wav files. Duration is 2 hr., 7 min.
Provenance:
These interviews are 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 others.
Topic:
Sculptors -- Massachusetts -- Boston -- Interviews  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Women sculptors  Search this
Women educators  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.pineda77
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw937959011-3ebf-473c-87f1-f0876d05c099
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-pineda77
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Marshall Fredericks

Interviewee:
Fredericks, Marshall M., 1908-1998  Search this
Interviewer:
Colby, Joy Hakanson  Search this
Names:
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Extent:
2 Sound cassettes (Sound recording)
68 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Sound cassettes
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1981 Aug. 5
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Marshall Fredericks conducted 1981 Aug. 5, by Joy Colby, in Fredericks' studio, in Royal Oak, Mich.
Fredericks speaks of his childhood and family background; his education; how his interest in sculpture began; Carl Milles and others who influenced him; his interest in Scandinavia; his early career in sculpture; his important commissions, including the Cleveland War Memorial; his service in the military during World War II; his work in Norway; and his family. His wife Rosalind also contributes to the interview.
Biographical / Historical:
Marshall Fredericks (1908-1998) was a sculptor from Birmingham, Mich.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives' 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 others.
Topic:
Sculptors -- Michigan -- Birmingham -- Interviews  Search this
Sculpture, American  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.freder81
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9b9e270e7-d130-4a0b-a9ab-4a858995afce
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-freder81
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Ray Eames

Interviewee:
Eames, Ray  Search this
Interviewer:
Bowman, Ruth, 1923-  Search this
Names:
Eames, Charles  Search this
Grotell, Maija  Search this
Hofmann, Hans, 1880-1966  Search this
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Saarinen, Eero, 1910-1961  Search this
Saarinen, Eliel, 1873-1950  Search this
Strengell, Marianne, 1909-1998  Search this
Extent:
89 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1980 July 28-August 20
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Ray Kaiser Eames conducted 1980 July 28-1980 August 20, by Ruth Bowman, for the Archives of American Art, in Venice, California.
Eames speaks of her childhood; her education at Cranbrook Academy; meeting Charles Eames; methods and styles in furniture design and architecture; and teaching design at the University of California, Los Angeles. She recalls Hans Hofmann, Eliel and Eero Saarinen, Maija Grotell, Marianne Strengell, and Carl Milles.
Biographical / Historical:
Ray Eames (1916-1988) was a designer from Venice, California.
General:
Originally recorded on 4 sound cassettes. Reformatted in 2010 as 8 digital wav file. Duration is 3 hr., 56 min.
Provenance:
These interviews are 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 others.
Restrictions:
Transcript available on the Archives of American Art website.
Topic:
Design  Search this
Designers -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.eames80
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw96cf29e06-c79d-4edd-b6c7-d3ed0d64cbbf
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-eames80
Online Media:

Esther Hoyt Sawyer letters

Creator:
Sawyer, Esther Hoyt  Search this
Names:
Dickinson, Edwin Walter, 1891-1978  Search this
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Vasilieff, Nicholas  Search this
Extent:
1 Linear foot ((on partial microfilm reel))
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Date:
1916-1965
Scope and Contents:
Over 500 letters to Sawyer from Edwin Dickinson, Carl Milles, and Nicholas Vasilieff.
Biographical / Historical:
Painter, graphic artist; Buffalo, N.Y.
Provenance:
Donated 1966 by Esther Hoyt Sawyer.
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.
Occupation:
Graphic artists -- New York (State) -- Buffalo  Search this
Painters -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Topic:
Women artists  Search this
Women painters  Search this
Identifier:
AAA.sawyesth
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9bc65632c-a677-4baa-9666-8d73b4e0123c
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-sawyesth

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