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Oral history interview with Charles Alan, 1970 August 20-25

Interviewee:
Alan, Charles, 1908?-1975  Search this
Interviewer:
Cummings, Paul, 1933-1997  Search this
Subject:
Allen, Lawrence  Search this
Baker, Richard Brown  Search this
Davis, Stuart  Search this
Halpert, Edith Gregor  Search this
Hirshhorn, Joseph H.  Search this
Kuniyoshi, Yasuo  Search this
Landau, Felix  Search this
Levi, Julian E. (Julian Edwin)  Search this
Levine, Jack  Search this
Marin, John  Search this
Marin, John, Jr.  Search this
Root, Edward Wales  Search this
Sachs, Paul J. (Paul Joseph)  Search this
Zerbe, Karl  Search this
Shahn, Ben  Search this
Geddes, Norman Bel  Search this
O'Keeffe, Georgia  Search this
Conner, Bruce  Search this
Harnett, William Michael  Search this
Askew, R. Kirk (Ralph Kirk)  Search this
Breinin, Raymond  Search this
Levy, Julien  Search this
Washburn, George  Search this
Downtown Gallery (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Yale School of Drama  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Citation:
Quotes and excerpts must be cited as follows: Oral history interview with Charles Alan, 1970 August 20-25. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
Set designers -- United States -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)11699
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)212203
AAA_collcode_alan70
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_212203
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Charles Alan

Interviewee:
Alan, Charles, 1908?-1975  Search this
Interviewer:
Cummings, Paul  Search this
Names:
Downtown Gallery (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Yale School of Drama -- Students  Search this
Allen, Lawrence  Search this
Askew, R. Kirk (Ralph Kirk), 1903-1974  Search this
Baker, Richard Brown  Search this
Breinin, Raymond, 1910-  Search this
Conner, Bruce, 1933-2008  Search this
Davis, Stuart, 1892-1964  Search this
Geddes, Norman Bel, 1893-1958  Search this
Halpert, Edith Gregor, 1900-1970  Search this
Harnett, William Michael, 1848-1892  Search this
Hirshhorn, Joseph H.  Search this
Kuniyoshi, Yasuo, 1889-1953  Search this
Landau, Felix, 1924-2003  Search this
Levi, Julian E. (Julian Edwin), 1900-1982  Search this
Levine, Jack, 1915-2010  Search this
Levy, Julien  Search this
Marin, John, 1870-1953  Search this
Marin, John, Jr., 1915?-1988  Search this
O'Keeffe, Georgia, 1887-1986  Search this
Root, Edward Wales, d. 1956  Search this
Sachs, Paul J. (Paul Joseph), 1878-1965  Search this
Shahn, Ben, 1898-1969  Search this
Washburn, George  Search this
Zerbe, Karl, 1903-1972  Search this
Extent:
37 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1970 August 20-25
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Charles Alan conducted 1970 August 20-25, by Paul Cummings, for the Archives of American Art.
Alan speaks of studying scene and stage design; attending Yale School of Drama; doing illustrations for various publications; traveling and studying in Europe; working as a set designer for MGM and Warner Brothers; his experiences working at the Downtown Gallery; his thoughts and recollections about Edith Halpert; leaving Downtown Gallery and starting his own gallery; his opinions on the future of small galleries in New York; museum purchases; Edith Halpert's art collection; selling his gallery to Felix Landau; and various thoughts concerning the art world. He recalls Norman Bell Geddes, Edith Halpert, Stuart Davis, Julien Levy, Yasuo Kuniyoshi, Kirk Askew, Raymond Breinin, Ben Shahn, George Washburn, Edward Root, Joe Hirshhorn, John Marin, John Marin Jr., Lawrence Allen, Georgia O'Keeffe, William Harnett, Julian Levi, Jack Levine, Karl Zerbe, Bruce Conner, Richard Baker, Paul Sachs, and many others.
Biographical / Historical:
Charles Alan (1908?-1975) was an art dealer from New York, New York. Alan attended Horace Mann School, graduating in 1924. Attended Yale School of Drama in 1925, then worked as a set designer for MGM and Warner Brothers. In 1930, Alan became a theatrical set designer and director. After serving in the Army in World War II, he worked for Edith Halpert at the Downtown Gallery. In 1952, he opened the Charles Alan Gallery, specializing in contemporary art. Alan closed the gallery in 1970 to become a private dealer.
General:
Originally recorded on 2 sound tape reels. Reformatted in 2010 as 6 digital wav files. Duration is 2 hrs., 58 min.
Provenance:
These interviews are 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.
Restrictions:
Transcript available on the Archives of American Art website.
Occupation:
Art dealers -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Topic:
Set Designers -- United States -- Interviews  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.alan70
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9b58bbd57-ca81-4a18-a614-fc868226702e
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-alan70
Online Media:

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  • Allen, Lawrence
  • Askew, R. Kirk (Ralph Kirk)
  • Baker, Richard Brown
  • Conner, Bruce
  • Cummings, Paul
  • Davis, Stuart
  • Downtown Gallery (New York, N.Y.)
  • Geddes, Norman Bel
  • Halpert, Edith Gregor
  • Harnett, William Michael
  • Allen, Lawrence
  • Askew, R. Kirk (Ralph Kirk)
  • Baker, Richard Brown
  • Conner, Bruce
  • Cummings, Paul
  • Davis, Stuart
  • Downtown Gallery (New York, N.Y.)
  • Geddes, Norman Bel
  • Halpert, Edith Gregor
  • Harnett, William Michael
  • Archives of American Art