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Oral history interview with Luchita Hurtado, 1994 May 1-1995 Apr. 13

Interviewee:
Hurtado, Luchita, 1920-2020  Search this
Interviewer:
Winter, Amy H. (Amy Harriet), 1948-  Search this
Subject:
Bloch, Lucienne  Search this
D'Harnoncourt, Rene  Search this
Kozloff, Joyce  Search this
Moholy-Nagy, Sibyl  Search this
Mullican, Lee  Search this
Mullican, Matt  Search this
Noguchi, Isamu  Search this
Paalen, Wolfgang  Search this
Varda, Jean  Search this
Wescher, Mary  Search this
Wescher, Paul  Search this
Topic:
Women artists -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Surrealism  Search this
Painters -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Hispanic American women artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)13583
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)215852
AAA_collcode_hurtad94
Theme:
Latino and Latin American
Women
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_215852
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Luchita Hurtado

Interviewee:
Hurtado, Luchita, 1920-2020  Search this
Interviewer:
Winter, Amy H. (Amy Harriet)  Search this
Karlstrom, Paul J.  Search this
Names:
Bloch, Lucienne, 1909-1999  Search this
D'Harnoncourt, Rene, 1901-1968  Search this
Kozloff, Joyce  Search this
Moholy-Nagy, Sibyl, 1905-  Search this
Mullican, Lee, 1919-1998  Search this
Mullican, Matt, 1951-  Search this
Noguchi, Isamu, 1904-1988  Search this
Paalen, Wolfgang, 1907-  Search this
Varda, Jean  Search this
Wescher, Mary  Search this
Wescher, Paul, 1894-  Search this
Extent:
4 Sound cassettes (Sound recording (4 hrs., 15 min.), analog)
120 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Sound cassettes
Pages
Date:
1994 May 1-1995 Apr. 13
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Luchita Hurtado conducted 1994 May 1-1995 Apr. 13, by Amy Winter and Paul Karlstrom, for the Archives of American Art, Women in the Arts in Southern California Oral History Project.
1994 May 1 session: The interview focuses on Hurtado's family background; years with her second husband, artist and collector Wolfgang Paalen; the surrealist artist group, Dynaton, living and traveling in Mexico with Paalen, moving to San Francisco and her relationships with artists, collectors; influences on her painting; and Surrealism. Among those mentioned are Rufino and Olga Tamayo, Isamu Noguchi, Gordon Onslow Ford, Jacqueline Johnson, Frida Kahlo, Remedios Varos, Leonora Carrington, Edward James, Lucienne Bloch, Stephen Dimitroff, Grace McCann Morley, Sybil Moholy-Nagy, Jack and Frank Stauffacher, James Broughton, Rene d'Harnoncourt, Julius Karlebach, Herbert (Joe) Spinden, and Robert Motherwell.
April 13, 1995 session: Hurtado continues with a focus on the California years, discussing her reasons for settling there, the Dynaton group and her circle of friends; her third husband, Lee Mullican; the birth of her son Matthew Mullican; her work; California and Mexican imagery; importance of experience and senses, particularly smell, to her creativity and work; importance of her family; and difficulties of pursuing art as a career for a woman, wife and mother; and life in Taos, N.M. She recalls Jean Varda, Shiela and Giles Healey, Mary and Paul Wescher, and Joyce Kozloff.
Biographical / Historical:
Luchita Hurtado (1920-2020) was a painter from Santa Monica, Calif. and Arroyo Seco, N.M. She was born in Caracas, Venezuela.
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. Funding for this interview was provided by the Margery and Harry Kahn Philanthropic Fund of the Jewish Communal Fund of New York.
Restrictions:
Transcript available on the Archives of American Art website.
Topic:
Women artists -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Surrealism  Search this
Painters -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Hispanic American women artists  Search this
Identifier:
AAA.hurtad94
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-hurtad94

Nellie Murtha Daly papers

Creator:
Daly, Nellie Murtha, 1867-1954  Search this
Names:
Sketch Club (San Francisco, Calif.)  Search this
Extent:
0.3 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Date:
1893-1914
Scope and Contents:
18 sketches, undated; 1 business letter, 1914; newspaper clippings and articles, 1893, 1894 and undated; exhibition catalogs, 1896-1914; and additional printed material relating to her work as the secretary and later treasurer of the Sketch Club, San Francisco, Calif.
Biographical / Historical:
Artist; San Francisco, Calif.
Provenance:
Donated 1991 by Mary L. Daly (Mrs. James Daly), daughter-in-law of Nellie Murtha Daly, on behalf of the Daly family.
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.
Topic:
Women artists -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Art -- Societies, etc. -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Identifier:
AAA.dalynell
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-dalynell

Jo Hanson papers

Creator:
Hanson, Jo  Search this
Names:
Women's Caucus for Art  Search this
Dickinson, Eleanor, 1931-  Search this
Hendrickson, Barbara  Search this
Extent:
4.1 Linear feet
1.06 Gigabytes
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Gigabytes
Video recordings
Photographs
Transcripts
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
circa 1969-2009
Summary:
The papers of San Francisco environmental artist and activist Jo Hanson measure 4.1 linear feet and 1.06 GB and date from circa 1969 to 2009. The papers document her professional activities through biographical material, project and exhibition files, printed and digital material, artwork, and photographs. Also found are files regarding her participation in the Women's Caucus for Art.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of San Francisco environmental artist and activist Jo Hanson measure 4.1 linear feet and 1.06 GB and date from circa 1969 to 2009. The papers document her professional activities through biographical material, project and exhibition files, printed and digital material, artwork, and photographs. Also found are files regarding her participation in the Women's Caucus for Art.

Of note within the collection is an oral history interview of Hanson, conducted by Eleanor Dickinson and Barbara Hendrickson in 2006-2007, as well was biographical documentation compiled for the interview. Hanson's installations "Crab Orchard Cemetery" and "Public Disclosure: Secrets From the Street" are also particularly well documented within this collection.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 6 series.

Series 1: Biographical Material, circa 1976-2008 (0.6 linear feet; Box 1)

Series 2: Project and Exhibition Files, circa 1973-2009 (0.8 linear feet; Box 1-2)

Series 3: Women's Caucus for Art, 1977-2006 (0.4 linear feet; Box 2)

Series 4: Printed Material, 1971-2008 (0.4 linear feet; Box 2)

Series 5: Artwork, 1969-circa 1990s (0.4 linear feet; Box 3, 5)

Series 6: Photographs, circa 1969-2007 (1.7 linear feet; Boxes 3-5, 1.06 GB; ER01-ER02)
Biographical / Historical:
Jo Hanson (1918-2007) was an environmental artist and activist in San Francisco, California. She was known for turning urban trash into works of art. She exhibited her work at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., Fresno Art Museum, and the Oakland Museum of California, among other places. In 1974 her installation "Crab Orchard Cemetery" toured nationally and included a mix of sculpture, printmaking, photography, and sound. During the 1980s she served on the San Francisco Arts Commission and championed the work of underrepresented women and artists of color. In 1996 she helped establish WEAD, the Women Environmental Artists Directory.
Provenance:
The collection was donated in 2011 by Eleanor Dickinson, Hanson's friend.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires and appointment. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
Rights:
The Jo Hanson papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Occupation:
Women artists -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Environmental artists  Search this
Topic:
Art -- Political aspects  Search this
Genre/Form:
Video recordings
Photographs
Transcripts
Sound recordings
Interviews
Citation:
Jo Hanson papers, circa 1969-2009. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.hansjo
See more items in:
Jo Hanson papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-hansjo

San Francisco Women Artists records

Creator:
San Francisco Women Artists  Search this
Names:
San Francisco Art Institute  Search this
Labaudt, Marcelle, 1892-1987  Search this
Whitney, Susan A.  Search this
Windslade, Dorothy  Search this
Extent:
15.5 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Sound recordings
Motion pictures (visual works)
Scrapbooks
Photograph albums
Date:
1925-1999
Summary:
The San Francisco Women Artists records measure 15.5 linear feet, date from 1925 to 1999, and include administrative records, correspondence, membership files, exhibition files, inventory records, printed material, twenty scrapbooks, photographs, eight photograph albums, and two motion picture film reels.
Scope and Contents:
The San Francisco Women Artists records measure 15.5 linear feet and date from 1925 to 1999. The activities of the SFWA are documented through administrative records, correspondence, membership files, exhibition files, inventory records, printed material, twenty scrapbooks, photographs, eight photograph albums, and two motion picture film reels.

Administrative records include daily journals and publicity materials, historical materials and founding documents, meeting minutes and agendas, artist council and committee meetings, and member and patron surveys. Also found within administrative records are materials on Marcelle Labaudt, SFWA Executive Secretary then Executive Director for many years, including original film footage and sound recordings for a career retrospective film project. Correspondence is with potential donors and patrons, board members, members, and artists. Membership files contain ledgers of paid memberships, lists of dropped members, membership applications and rosters, membership biographies, renewals and statistics, and membership directories.

Exhibition files contain price lists and display placards, slides and photographs, and printed materials relating to shows and exhibitions presented by various SFWA members and cooperating organizations, including the San Francisco Art Institute. Shows include "Celebration of International Women" (1991), "The Paintings of Dorothy Windslade" (1994), annual juried SFWA shows and emerging artists exhibitions (1947-circa 1994), "Art of Susan A. Whitney Exhibit and Silent Auction" (1997), and "Hands and Heart, the Art of Healing" (1997), among others.

Inventory records contain artist inventory cards noting various artwork and exhibitions. Printed material includes books, SFWA bulletins, SFWA calendars, clippings, and exhibition printed materials, such as announcements, brochures, and catalogs. Twenty scrapbooks document the SFWA through clippings, exhibition documentation, photographs, biographies, and annotations. Eight photograph albums depict exhibitions and shows, artwork and artists. Also found within photographs are slides, negatives, and loose photographs depicting works of art, gallery and receptions, and meetings.
Arrangement:
This collection is arranged as 8 series:

Series 1: Administrative Records, 1925-circa 1998 (6.5 linear feet; Boxes 1-6, FC 17-18)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1931-1998 (0.7 linear feet; Boxes 6-7)

Series 3: Membership Files, 1925-circa 1998 (1.5 linear feet; Boxes 7-8)

Series 4: Exhibition Files, 1947-circa 1998 (0.7 linear feet; Boxes 8-9)

Series 5: Inventory Records, circa 1974-circa 1985 (0.4 linear feet; Boxes 9-10)

Series 6: Printed Material, 1926-1999 (1.5 linear feet; Boxes 10-11, 16)

Series 7: Scrapbooks, 1925-circa 1990s (2.7 linear feet; Boxes 11-13, 15)

Series 8: Photographs 1970-circa 1990s (1.5 linear feet; Boxes 13-14, 16)
Biographical / Historical:
San Francisco Women Artists (SFWA) is one of California's oldest arts organizations, dating its founding to 1887 as the Sketch Club. At that time, members met monthly to share and critique one another's work and to travel together on sketching trips. After the great earthquake in 1906 destroyed the club's headquarters, the group floundered and reorganized and merged with other organizations that also included men. By 1925, however, a core group of women broke away and formed the San Francisco Society of Women Artists. The SFWA's founding mission was "... the study and furtherance of all interests common to the arts both graphic and plastic … and to support causes neglected by other art organizations in the Bay Area." Early members include Alice B. Chittenden, Helen Hyde, Matilda Lotz, Clara Taggart McChesney, M. Evelyn McCormick, Dora Williams, and Eva Almond Withrow. Other members included Marcelle Labaudt, Dorr Bothwell, Claire Falkenstein, Ruth Asawa, Nell Sinton, Imogen Cunningham, Eleanor Dickenson, Jo Hansen, Emmy Lou Packard, Eleanore Rappe, Ruth Armer, Barbara Spring, Beth Van Hoesen and Dorothy Winslade.

The Society held its first exhibition in 1926. In 1932, Frida Kahlo's painting, Frieda and Diego Rivera, was shown at the "Sixth Annual Exhibition of the San Francisco Society of Women Artists" and was the first public showing of Kahlo's work. In 1946 the organization shortened its name to the San Francisco Women Artists.

In 1976 the SFWA and exective director Marcelle Labaudt were commended in a Senate Resolution for "outstanding contributions to the cultural enhancement of the City of San Francisco." In 1983 the SFWA procured a gallery at 451 Hayes Street, which provided exhibition space for members, as well as an art rental program. In 1985 the gallery moved to 370 Hayes Street. The SFWA celebrated its centennial in 1994 with an exhibition including work of many past members.

This organization continues to host monthly themed juried shows and is dedicated to encouraging and promoting the work of women artists.
Provenance:
Pam Foley, president of the San Francisco Women Artists donated the records in 1999.
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 with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
Rights:
The San Francisco Women Artists records are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Occupation:
Women artists -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Topic:
Art -- Societies, etc. -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Sound recordings
Motion pictures (visual works)
Scrapbooks
Photograph albums
Identifier:
AAA.sanfrawa
See more items in:
San Francisco Women Artists records
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-sanfrawa

Claire Falkenstein papers

Creator:
Falkenstein, Claire, 1908-1997  Search this
Names:
Coos Art Museum  Search this
Fresno Art Museum  Search this
Galerie Anderson-Mayer  Search this
Gallery Stadler  Search this
Jack Rutberg Fine Arts (Los Angeles, Calif.)  Search this
John Bolles Gallery (San Francisco, Calif.)  Search this
Los Angeles Museum of Art  Search this
Malvina Miller  Search this
Martha Jackson Gallery  Search this
Merging One Gallery  Search this
Mills College -- Faculty  Search this
Pond Farm Workshop  Search this
San Francisco Museum of Art  Search this
University of California, San Francisco. School of Fine Arts -- Faculty  Search this
Green, Ray, 1908-1997  Search this
Guggenheim, Peggy, 1898-  Search this
Kuh, Katharine  Search this
O'Donnell, May, 1906-2004  Search this
Sawyer, Kenneth B.  Search this
Still, Clyfford, 1904-  Search this
Still, Patricia  Search this
Tapie, Michel  Search this
Temko, Allan  Search this
Tobey, Mark  Search this
Wildenhain, Frans, 1905-1980  Search this
Extent:
42.8 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Drawings
Motion pictures (visual works)
Scrapbooks
Sketchbooks
Diaries
Photographs
Sketches
Date:
circa 1914-1997
bulk 1940-1990
Summary:
The papers of sculptor, painter, jewelry designer, and teacher Claire Falkenstein measure 42.8 linear feet and date from 1917 to her death in 1997. There is extensive correspondence with fellow artists, collectors, critics, friends, museums, and galleries. The collection also contains biographical materials, much of it collected and organized by Falkenstein, personal and business records, writings, diaries, exhibition files, commission files, teaching files, photographs, original artwork, scrapbooks, and printed materials. There is a short motion picture film of an interview with Falkenstein featuring the windows she designed for St. Basil's Church in Los Angeles.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of sculptor, painter, jewelry designer, and teacher Claire Falkenstein measure 42.8 linear feet and date from 1917 to her death in 1997. There is extensive correspondence with fellow artists, collectors, critics, friends, museums, and galleries. The collection also contains biographical materials, much of it collected and organized by Falkenstein, personal and business records, writings, diaries, exhibition files, commission files, teaching files, photographs, original artwork, scrapbooks, and printed materials. There is a short motion picture film of an interview with Falkenstein featuring the windows she designed for St. Basil's Church in Los Angeles.

Biographical material includes appointment calendars, awards and honorary degrees, interview transcripts, passports, resumes, wills, and scrapbooks. Scrapbooks were compiled by Falkenstein and focus primarily on her exhibitions at the Galerie Stadler and Gallery Meyer in 1959 and 1960. Also of interest are the "biography files" created and arranged by Falkenstein. These files contain material that she personally felt was the most important in documenting her activities each year. They include correspondence, exhibition catalogs, printed material, and invitations.

Measuring nine linear feet, correspondence is extensive and comprehensively documents Falkenstein's work, social life, relationships, and other business and personal activities. Correspondence dates from 1941 to 1997 and includes business letters and correspondence with friends and family. Her communications with friends, family, clients, gallery owners, collectors, museums, publishers, foundations, and grant agencies reveal many of her ideas and techniques. Individual correspondents include Ray Green, Peggy Guggenheim, Katharine Kuh, May O'Donnell, Ken Sawyer, Clyfford and Pat Still, Michel Tapie, Allan Temko, Mark Tobey, and Frans Wildenhain. Gallery and museum correspondence is with the San Francisco Museum of Art, Coos Art Museum, Los Angeles Museum of Art, Galerie Stadler (Paris), Gallery Mayer (Paris), Malvina Miller (New York), Martha Jackson Gallery (New York), Jack Rutberg Fine Arts (Los Angeles), Galerie Anderson-Mayer (Paris), and Bolles Gallery. Correspondence is also found in the Commission Files and Exhibition Files.

Personal and business records contain a wide variety of material documenting Falkenstein's business, financial, legal, professional, and personal transactions. Files are found for sales and prices, art inventories, smaller jewelry commissions, her work as a juror, her business with galleries, legal affairs and contracts, expenses, records of arts organizations to which she belonged, conferences, grants and fellowships, studio and house renovations, her Paris studio and Paris expenses, travel, donations, loans and consignments, conservation, art shipping, insurance, and taxes. Oversized visitor's logs contain comments from visitors to Falkenstein's studio in Venice, California.

Falkenstein maintained comprehensive documentation of her exhibitions from her first exhibition in the 1930s to the last one at the Merging One Gallery in 1996. Files include both a chronological record and individual record for nearly all of her exhibitions. Found with the files are correspondence, photographs, loan and shipping records, catalogs, announcements, clippings, articles, and other records. Most of the photographs related to exhibitions are found in the Photographs Series. The files for exhibitions at the Fresno Art Museum, Martha Jackson Gallery and Jack Rutberg Fine Art Gallery are particularly rich.

Commission files document nearly all of Falkenstein's public and private large-scale projects and often contain a visual record of the work, as well as correspondence, design notes, contracts, and expense reports. There is documentation of the St. Basils Church windows in Los Angeles; the Peggy Guggenheim gate in Venice, Italy; and the fountain at the California Savings and Loan, in Los Angeles; and many others. There is also a chronological record of her commissions. The bulk of the photographs of commissions are found in the Photograph series. Also, most of Falkenstein's jewelry design commissions are found in the Personal and Business Records series.

Falkenstein's work as a prolific writer, particularly in the 1940s and 1950s, is well-documented here through her numerous published articles in Arts and Architecture magazine, and the New York Herald-Tribune. Her work for Arts and Architecture was primarily written for the "Art Comments from San Francisco" section. She was living in Paris when she contributed an art news column to the New York Herald-Tribune. Also found here are five diaries and one journal dating from circa 1929-1978. The entries are inconsistent and concern mostly travel. The diaries from 1929 and 1934 are more personal. Falkenstein also maintained extensive notes and notebooks about artwork ideas, observations about art, research, and even drafts of letters. There are also many notes about various topics, including art and class notes. Additional writings are eclectic and cover a wide range of topics, including music, poetry, the script for Falkestein's film entitled Touching the Quick, and drafts of her unpublished book on murals. A handful of writings by others are found, most with annotations by Falkenstein.

Teaching files include Falkenstein's numerous lectures given while teaching at Mills College, Pond Farm Workshops, and California School of Fine Arts, and various symposiums and conferences. Also found are lesson plans, contracts, scattered correspondence, and notes. The files on her tenure at the Pond Farm Workshops are particularly interesting, with notes about her fellow teacher Frans Wildenhain and correspondence with workshop owners, Jane and Gordon Herr.

There are extensive photographs of Falkenstein, her family and friends, colleagues, commissions, exhibitions, and works of art. Included are many images of Falkenstein, of Falkenstien with her art, of Falkentstien working, and of Falkenstein's studio. There are numerous photographs of Falkenstein with friends, family, and colleagues in social or work settings. Also found are photographs of exhibition openings, installation views, and works of art exhibited. Additional photographs document Falkenstein's commissions, including images of her at work. Additional images of commissions may also be found in the Commission Series, but the bulk are filed here. There are numerous photographs of Falkenstein's works of art, including drawings, sculpture, jewelry, murals, lamps, and ceramics.

Falkenstein's papers include a large amount of sketches, sketchbooks, and drawings. Many of the sketches and drawings relate to her ideas about commissions and large sculpture, jewelry designs, and general sketches. Sketches are also found in the Commission Files. Also included are drawings by Mark Tobey and Michel Tapie, and others.

Finally, printed materials include general exhibition catalogs, newspapers clippings, and clippings of articles by and about Falkenstein. Also included are books that have been inscribed and signed by the author.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into 9 series:

Series 1: Biographical Materials, 1934-1997 (Box 1-4, 41; 4.3 linear feet)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1931-1997 (Box 5-13; 9 linear feet)

Series 3: Personal and Business Records, 1936-1997 (Box 14-17, 41, 46-49; 4.2 linear feet)

Series 4: Exhibitions, 1930-1996 (Box 18-21, 42, OV 50; 3.3 linear feet)

Series 5. Commissions, 1930-1992 (Box 21-22, OV 50-54 ; 2.0 linear feet)

Series 6: Writings, circa 1929-1993 (Box 22-26, 42, 55; 4.6 linear feet)

Series 7: Teaching Files, 1929-1995 (Box 26; .8 linear feet)

Series 8: Photographs, circa 1917-1997 (Box 27-35, 43, 55-56; 9.5 linear feet)

Series 9: Artwork, circa 1937-1995 (Box 36-37, 44, 57; 2.0 linear feet)

Series 10: Printed Materials, circa 1914-1990 (Box 37-40, 45, 58; 3.9 linear feet)
Biographical Note:
Claire Falkenstein (1908-1997) spent the majority of her life working as an artist, sculptor, jewelry designer, teacher, and writer in California.

Claire Falkenstein was born in 1908 and grew up in Coos Bay, Oregon. In 1920, Falkenstein and her family moved to Berkeley, California, where she attended high school and then college at the University of California at Berkeley, studying philosophy, anthropology, and art. She graduated in 1930. Falkenstein had her first solo show at the East-West Gallery in San Francisco in 1930, the only member of her class to have an exhibition before graduation.

During the early 1930s, Falkenstein studied at Mills College with modernist sculptor Alexander Archipenko. There she also met Bauhaus artists Laszlo Moholy-Nagy and Gyorgy Kepes. Falkenstein married her high school sweetheart, Richard McCarthy in 1936.

In 1944, Falkenstein had her first New York exhibition at the Bonestall Gallery. At that time, Falkenstein's primary mediums were stone and wood. However, she became increasingly experimental with new materials that included sheet aluminum, Cor-Ten steel, glass, plastics, and welded wire rods while maintaining a connection to organic and natural forms. Her work in jewelry design was an outlet for exploring these new materials, forms, and techniques on a small scale. As her work grew physically larger, so did her recognition and it was her work in sculpture that won her a faculty appointment at the California School of Fine Arts from 1947-1949. It was here that she met Patricia and Clyfford Still, Hassel Smith, and Richard Diebenkorn.

In 1948, Falkenstein was invited to exhibit at the Salon des Realites Nouvelle in Paris, her first European show. She eventually moved to Europe in 1950 and had studios in Paris, Venice, and Rome. While in Europe, Falkenstein executed a number of large scale commissions, including the stair screen for Galerie Stadler (1955), grotto gates for Princess Pignatelli's villa in Rome (1957), and the bronze, steel, and the glass gate at the Peggy Guggenheim Museum in Venice (1961). While in Paris, she became acquainted with noted art critic Michel Tapie, with whom she maintained a life-long friendship.

During the 1940s and 1950s Falkenstein was a regular contributor to Arts and Architecture magazine, most often writing the "Art Comments from San Francisco" section. While in Paris, she also wrote a column on art news for the New York Herald Tribune.

Falkenstein returned to the United States in 1962, eventually renovating a studio space in Venice, California. It was here that she conceived her largest commissions. In 1965, Falkenstein received a commission from the California Savings and Loan to create a sculpture for a large fountain at the front of the bank in downtown Los Angeles. The copper tube fountain, entitled "Structure and Flow #2," was the first of many large scale public art commissions that Falkenstein completed during her years in California. Her most important commission in the United States, completed in 1969, was for the doors, rectory gates and grills and stained-glass windows for St. Basil's Church on Wilshire Boulevard in Los Angeles. The eight doors and fifteen rectory screens, including 80 foot high windows in the nave, were an expansion of the "never ending screen" concept that Falkenstein executed with the Pignatelli commission in Rome. She continued to use this motif in her work throughout her career.

Claire Falkenstein worked as an arts instructor, visiting artist, and guest lecturer at many colleges, workshops, and schools in California. Her first position was at Mills College from 1946-1947. Shortly thereafter, she was appointed to the faculty at the California School of Fine Arts and later taught in the Extension Divisions of the University of California, Berkeley. She taught classes at California State Polytechnic University, California State University at Davis, and the Anna Head School. Falkenstein also taught art at the Pond Farm Workshops in California, and lectured at numerous colleges and museums. She served on many juried art shows in Southern California.

Falkenstein was acquainted with many artists, writers, instructors, collectors, gallery owners, and critics. Close friends included Esther and Bob Robles, Clyfford and Patricia Still, Michel Tapie, Allan Temko, Mark Tobey, Frans Wildenhain, and other notable figures in the art world.

Falkenstein continued to complete large scale private and public commissioned sculptures during the 1960s through the 1980s, including work for the University of Southern California, Hyland Biological Laboratory, California State University at Dominquez Hills and the California State Department of Motor Vehicles. Throughout her career, Falkenstein's work was featured in numerous exhibitions across the country. Her sculpture and other artwork can be found in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Coos Art Museum, Harvard University Art Museum, University of Southern California Fisher Museum of Art, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and the Tate Gallery.

Falkenstein died in 1997 at the age of 89.
Related Material:
The Archives of American Art also holds two oral history interviews with Claire Falkenstein. The interview on April 13, 1965 was conducted by Betty Hoag and the one on March 2 and 21, 1995 was conducted by Paul Karlstrom.
Provenance:
The Claire Falkenstein papers were donated in 1997 by Steffan Wacholtz and Nancy Kendall, trustees for the Claire Falkenstein Trust.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Rights:
The Claire Falkenstein papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Topic:
Women artists -- California  Search this
Women artists -- France -- Paris  Search this
Sculptors -- California  Search this
Interviews  Search this
Awards  Search this
Transcripts  Search this
Articles  Search this
Designers -- California  Search this
Drafts (documents)  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Poetry  Search this
Scripts  Search this
Notebooks  Search this
Artists' studios  Search this
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Art patronage  Search this
Educators -- California  Search this
Jewelry -- Design  Search this
Painters -- California  Search this
Sculptors -- France -- Paris  Search this
Genre/Form:
Drawings
Motion pictures (visual works)
Scrapbooks
Sketchbooks
Diaries
Photographs
Sketches
Citation:
Claire Falkenstein papers, circa 1914-1997, bulk 1940-1990. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.falkclai
See more items in:
Claire Falkenstein papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-falkclai
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Beatrice Wood, 1992 March 2

Interviewee:
Wood, Beatrice, 1893-1998  Search this
Interviewer:
Karlstrom, Paul J  Search this
Subject:
Natzler, Otto  Search this
Natzler, Gertrud  Search this
Women in the Arts in Southern California Oral History Project  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Ceramics  Search this
Women artists -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Ceramicists -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)11853
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)214601
AAA_collcode_wood92
Theme:
Craft
Women
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_214601
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Edith Wyle, 1993 March 9-September 7

Interviewee:
Wyle, Edith R., 1918-1999  Search this
Interviewer:
Emanuelli, Sharon K.  Search this
Subject:
Craft and Folk Art Museum  Search this
Egg and Eye Gallery and Restaurant (Los Angeles, Calif.)  Search this
Women in the Arts in Southern California Oral History Project  Search this
Type:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Topic:
Women artists -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)12933
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)215447
AAA_collcode_wyle93
Theme:
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_215447
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Andrea Zittel, 2018 January 8-9

Interviewee:
Zittel, Andrea, 1965-  Search this
Interviewer:
Drohojowska-Philp, Hunter  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Multimedia (Art)  Search this
Women artists -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Women artists -- New York (State) -- New York -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)17534
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)392051
AAA_collcode_Zittel17
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_392051

Oral history interview with June Wayne, 1970 August 4-6

Interviewee:
Wayne, June Claire, 1918-2011  Search this
Interviewer:
Cummings, Paul, 1933-  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Art, American  Search this
Women artists -- California -- Los Angeles -- Interviews  Search this
Painters -- California -- Los Angeles -- Interviews  Search this
Printmakers -- California -- Los Angeles -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)11875
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)213188
AAA_collcode_wayne70
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_213188

Oral history interview with Marian Kendall, 1965 Aug. 26

Interviewee:
Kendall, Marian  Search this
Interviewer:
McGlynn, Betty Lochrie Hoag, 1914-2002  Search this
Subject:
Adamson, Glenn  Search this
Federal Art Project (Calif.)  Search this
New Deal and the Arts Oral History Project  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Federal aid to the arts  Search this
Women artists -- California  Search this
Weavers -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)11625
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)213632
AAA_collcode_kendal65
Theme:
New Deal
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_213632

Oral history interview with Miriam Schapiro, 1989 September 10

Interviewee:
Schapiro, Miriam, 1923-2015  Search this
Interviewer:
Bowman, Ruth, 1923-  Search this
Subject:
Women in the Arts in Southern California Oral History Project  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Women artists -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Women artists -- New York (State) -- New York -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)11695
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)213892
AAA_collcode_schapi89
Theme:
Women
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_213892
Online Media:

Oral history interview with June Wayne, 1965 June 14

Interviewee:
Wayne, June Claire, 1918-2011  Search this
Interviewer:
McGlynn, Betty Lochrie Hoag, 1914-2002  Search this
Subject:
New Deal and the Arts Oral History Project  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Federal aid to the arts  Search this
Women artists -- California -- Los Angeles -- Interviews  Search this
Painters -- California -- Los Angeles -- Interviews  Search this
Printmakers -- California -- Los Angeles -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)11642
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)213970
AAA_collcode_wayne65
Theme:
New Deal
Women
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_213970

Oral history interview with Maulina (Molly) Dennett Pendergast, 1964 Oct. 25

Interviewee:
Pendergast, Maulina Dennett, 1905-2002  Search this
Interviewer:
McChesney, Mary Fuller, 1922-  Search this
Subject:
New Deal and the Arts Oral History Project  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Federal aid to the arts  Search this
Women artists -- California -- Sacramento -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)12136
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)214088
AAA_collcode_pender64
Theme:
New Deal
Women
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_214088

Oral history interview with Rachel Rosenthal, 1989 September 2-3

Interviewee:
Rosenthal, Rachel, 1926-  Search this
Interviewer:
Roth, Moira, 1933-  Search this
Subject:
Women in the Arts in Southern California Oral History Project  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Performance artists -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Feminism and art  Search this
Artists and the theater  Search this
Women artists -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)13200
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)215584
AAA_collcode_rosent89
Theme:
Women
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_215584
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Suzanne Lacy, 1990 Mar. 16-Sept. 27

Interviewee:
Lacy, Suzanne, 1945-  Search this
Interviewer:
Roth, Moira, 1933-  Search this
Subject:
Women in the Arts in Southern California Oral History Project  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Performance art  Search this
Women artists -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Performance artists -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Feminism and art  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)12940
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)215585
AAA_collcode_lacy90
Theme:
Women
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_215585
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Claire Falkenstein, 1995 Mar. 2-21

Interviewee:
Falkenstein, Claire, 1908-1997  Search this
Interviewer:
Karlstrom, Paul J  Search this
Subject:
Appel, Karel  Search this
Francis, Sam  Search this
Jackson, Martha Kellogg  Search this
Lusk, George  Search this
Still, Clyfford  Search this
Tapie, Michel  Search this
University of California, San Francisco. School of Fine Arts  Search this
Gallery Stadler  Search this
Women in the Arts in Southern California Oral History Project  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Women artists -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Sculptors -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Women artists -- France -- Paris -- Interviews  Search this
Artists -- France -- Paris -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)12659
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)215849
AAA_collcode_falken95
Theme:
Women
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_215849
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Patssi Valdez, 1999 May 26-June 2

Interviewee:
Valdez, Patssi, 1951-  Search this
Interviewer:
Rangel, Jeffrey J.  Search this
Subject:
Mesa-Bains, Amalia  Search this
Gronk  Search this
Gamboa, Harry  Search this
Self-Help Graphics and Art, Inc.  Search this
Otis Art Institute  Search this
Asco (Group of artists)  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Hispanic American artists -- Interviews  Search this
Mexican American artists -- Interviews  Search this
Hispanic American women artists -- Interviews  Search this
Women artists -- California -- Los Angeles -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)13543
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)216609
AAA_collcode_valdez99
Theme:
Latino and Latin American
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_216609
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Kira Perov-Viola, 2005 Aug. 30

Interviewee:
Perov, Kira, 1951-  Search this
Interviewer:
Drohojowska-Philp, Hunter  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Women artists -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)12766
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)255216
AAA_collcode_perovv05
Theme:
Women
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_255216

Oral history interview with Merryll Saylan, 2006 May 20-June 5

Interviewee:
Saylan, Merryll B., 1936-  Search this
Interviewer:
Adamson, Glenn, 1972-  Search this
Subject:
Blunk, J. B.  Search this
Cooper, Michael Jean  Search this
Evans, Ralph  Search this
Foy, George  Search this
Fredell, Gail  Search this
Glaser, Jerry  Search this
Lipofsky, Marvin  Search this
Maruyama, Wendy  Search this
Rapp, Joanne  Search this
Stocksdale, Bob  Search this
Stubbs, Del  Search this
Weir-Quiton, Pamela  Search this
American Association of Woodturners  Search this
California State University, Northridge  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
University of California, Los Angeles  Search this
Wood Turning Center (Philadelphia, Pa.)  Search this
Woodstock School of Painting  Search this
International Turned Objects Show  Search this
Type:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Topic:
Decorative arts  Search this
Environmental engineering  Search this
Feminism  Search this
Furniture making  Search this
Furniture making -- Study and teaching  Search this
Turning -- Study and teaching  Search this
Women artists -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Woodwork  Search this
Woodworkers -- California -- Interviews.  Search this
World War, 1939-1945  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)13576
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)260467
AAA_collcode_saylan06
Theme:
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_260467
Online Media:

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