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Katharine Kuh papers

Creator:
Kuh, Katharine  Search this
Names:
Albright-Knox Art Gallery  Search this
Art Institute of Chicago -- Faculty  Search this
Biennale di Venezia  Search this
Katharine Kuh Gallery (Chicago, Ill.)  Search this
Adams, Ansel, 1902-1984  Search this
Albers, Josef  Search this
Albright, Ivan, 1897-1983  Search this
Archipenko, Alexander, 1887-1964  Search this
Arensberg, Louise S. (Louise Stevenson), 1879-1953  Search this
Arensberg, Walter, 1878-1954  Search this
Arp, Jean, 1887-1966  Search this
Barnet, Will, 1911-  Search this
Barr, Alfred H., Jr., 1902-1981  Search this
Biddle, George, 1885-1973  Search this
Breuer, Marcel, 1902-  Search this
Calder, Alexander, 1898-1976  Search this
Campoli, Cosmo  Search this
Chagall, Marc, 1887-1985  Search this
Chavez Morado, José, 1909-2002  Search this
Chermayeff, Serge, 1900-  Search this
Cornell, Joseph  Search this
Cox, Richard  Search this
Davis, Stuart, 1892-1964  Search this
Day, Worden, 1916-1986  Search this
De Kooning, Willem, 1904-1997  Search this
Dickinson, Edwin Walter, 1891-  Search this
Dubuffet, Jean, 1901-  Search this
Duchamp, Marcel, 1887-1968  Search this
Elizabeth, Queen of Great Britain, II, 1926-  Search this
Ernst, Jimmy, 1920-1984  Search this
Falkenstein, Claire, 1908-1997  Search this
Feitelson, Lorser, 1898-1978  Search this
Friendly, Fred W.  Search this
Giacometti, Alberto, 1901-1966  Search this
Golub, Leon, 1922-2004  Search this
Goto, Joseph, 1920-  Search this
Grabe, Klaus  Search this
Graves, Robert, 1895-1985  Search this
Guggenheim, Peggy, 1898-  Search this
Guston, Philip, 1913-1980  Search this
Hare, David, 1917-  Search this
Hare, Denise Browne  Search this
Hayter, Stanley William, 1901-1988  Search this
Hirshhorn, Joseph  Search this
Hofmann, Hans, 1880-1966  Search this
Hélion, Jean, 1904-1987  Search this
Inverarity, Robert Bruce, 1909-1999  Search this
Johns, Jasper, 1930-  Search this
Johnson, Philip, 1906-2005  Search this
Johnson, Ray, 1927-  Search this
Kandinsky, Wassily, 1866-1944  Search this
Kepes, Gyorgy, 1906-2001  Search this
Kepes, Juliet  Search this
Klee, Paul, 1879-1940  Search this
Kline, Franz, 1910-1962  Search this
Knox, Seymour H., 1898-1990  Search this
Le Corbusier, 1887-1965  Search this
Lundeberg, Helen, 1908-1999  Search this
Lye, Len, 1901-1980  Search this
Léger, Fernand, 1881-1955  Search this
Mies van der Rohe, Ludwig, 1886-1969  Search this
Millier, Arthur, 1893-  Search this
Moholy-Nagy, László, 1895-1946  Search this
Motherwell, Robert  Search this
Mérida, Carlos, 1891-1984  Search this
Nutting, Muriel Leone Tyler, b. 1892  Search this
Nutting, Myron Chester, 1890-1972  Search this
O'Higgins, Pablo, 1904-  Search this
Orozco, José Clemente, 1883-1949  Search this
Ozbekhan, Hasan, 1921-2007  Search this
Perkins, Frances  Search this
Picasso, Pablo, 1881-1973  Search this
Putnam, Wallace, 1899-1989  Search this
Ray, Man, 1890-1976  Search this
Rich, Daniel Catton, 1904-1976  Search this
Rothko, Mark, 1903-1970  Search this
Sandberg, Carl  Search this
Seligmann, Kurt, 1900-1962  Search this
Shackelford, Shelby  Search this
Shahn, Ben, 1898-1969  Search this
Spaeth, Otto, d. 1966  Search this
Sterne, Hedda, 1916-  Search this
Stevenson, Adlai E. (Adlai Ewing), 1900-1965  Search this
Still, Clyfford, 1904-  Search this
Tanning, Dorothea, 1910-2012  Search this
Tobey, Mark  Search this
Winston, Harry Lewis  Search this
Woolf, Olga  Search this
Young, Victor  Search this
Photographer:
Pollack, Peter, 1909-1978  Search this
Extent:
12 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Illustrated letters
Resumes
Travel diaries
Minutes
Calendars
Visitors' books
Photographs
Paintings
Awards
Drawings
Sound recordings
Collages
Scrapbooks
Lithographs
Prints
Wills
Watercolors
Poetry
Lecture notes
Lectures
Sales records
Date:
1875-1994
bulk 1930-1994
Summary:
The papers of art historian, dealer, critic, and curator Katharine Kuh measure 12 linear feet and date from 1875-1994, with the bulk of the material dating from 1930-1994. The collection documents Kuh's career as a pioneer modernist art historian and as the first woman curator of European Art and Sculpture at the Art Institute of Chicago. Found within the papers are biographical material; correspondence with family, friends and colleagues; personal business records; artwork by various artists; a travel journal; writings by Kuh and others; scrapbooks; printed material; photographs of Kuh and others; and audio recordings of Kuh's lectures and of Daniel Catton Rich reading poetry.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of art historian, dealer, critic, and curator Katharine Kuh measure 12 linear feet and date from 1875-1994, with the bulk of the material dating from 1930-1994. Found within the papers are biographical material; correspondence with family, friends and colleagues; personal business records; artwork by various artists; a travel journal; writings by Kuh and others; scrapbooks; printed material; photographs of Kuh and others; and audio recordings of Kuh's lectures and of Daniel Catton Rich reading poetry.

Biographical material consists of copies of Kuh's birth certificate, resumés, passports, award certificates, honorary diplomas, and address books listing information about several prominent artists and colleagues.

Four linear feet of correspondence offers excellent documentation of Kuh's interest in art history, her travels, her career at the Art Institute of Chicago, her work as a corporate art advisor, and as an author. There are letters from her mother Olga Woolf, friends, and colleagues. There is extensive correspondence with various staff members of the Art Institute of Chicago, the First National Bank of Chicago, and The Saturday Review. Also of interest are letters from artists and collectors, several of whom became life-long friends including Walter and Louise Arensberg, Cosmo Campoli, Serge Chermayeff, Richard Cox, Worden Day, Claire Falkenstein, Fred Friendly, Leon Golub, Joseph Goto, David Hare, Denise Brown Hare, Jean Hélion, Ray Johnson, Gyorgy and Juliet Kepes, Len Lye, Wallace Putnam, Kurt Seligmann, Shelby Shackelford, Hedda Sterne, and Clyfford Still. Many letters are illustrated with original artwork in various media.

There are also scattered letters from various artists and other prominent individuals including Josef Albers, George Biddle, Marcel Breuer, Joseph Cornell, Stuart Davis, Edwin Dickinson, Joseph Hirshhorn, Daniel Catton Rich, and Dorothea Tanning.

Personal business records include a list of artwork, Olga Woolf's will, inventories of Kuh's personal art collection, miscellaneous contracts and deeds of gift, receipts for the sale of artwork, files concerning business-related travel, and miscellaneous receipts.

Artwork in the collection represents a wide range of artist friends and media, such as drawings, watercolors, paintings, collages, and prints. Included are works by various artists including lithographs by David Hare and a watercolor set, Technics and Creativity, designed and autographed by Jasper Johns for the Museum of Modern Art, 1970.

Notes and writings include annotated engagement calendars, travel journals for Germany, a guest book for the Kuh Memorial gathering, and many writings and notes by Kuh for lectures and articles concerning art history topics. Of interest are minutes/notes from meetings for art festivals, conferences, and the "Conversations with Artists Program (1961). Also found are writings by others about Kuh and other art history topics.

Six scrapbooks contain clippings that document the height of Kuh's career as a gallery director and museum curator. Scrapbook 6 contains clippings about Fernand Léger, the subject of a retrospective exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago in 1953.

Additional printed material includes clippings about Kuh and her interests, a comprehensive collection of clippings of Kuh's articles for The Saturday Review, exhibition announcements and catalogs, calendars of events, programs, brochures, books including Poems by Kuh as a child, and reproductions of artwork. Of particular interest are the early and exhibition catalogs from the Katharine Kuh Gallery, and rare catalogs for artists including Jean Arp, Alexander Calder, Marc Chagall, Jean Dubuffet, Marcel Duchamp, Stanley William Hayter, Hans Hofmann, Wassily Kandinsky, Paul Klee, Franz Kline, Le Corbusier, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, and Pablo Picasso.

Photographs provide important documentation of the life and career of Katharine Kuh and are of Kuh, family members, friends, colleagues, events, residences, and artwork. Several of the photographs of Kuh were taken by Will Barnet and Marcel Breuer and there is a notable pair of photo booth portraits of Kuh and a young Ansel Adams. There are also group photographs showing Angelica Archipenko with Kuh; designer Klaus Grabe; painters José Chavez Morado and Pablo O'Higgins in San Miguel, Mexico; Kuh at the Venice Biennale with friends and colleagues including Peggy Guggenheim, Frances Perkins, Daniel Catton Rich, and Harry Winston; and "The Pre-Depressionists" including Lorser Feitelson, Robert Inverarity, Helen Lundeberg, Arthur Millier, Myron Chester Nutting, and Muriel Tyler Nutting.

Photographs of exhibition installations and openings include views of the Katharine Kuh Gallery; Fernand Léger, Man Ray, and László Moholy-Nagy at the Art Institute of Chicago; and Philip Guston, Jimmy Ernst, Seymour H. Knox, Franz Kline, Robert Motherwell, and Mark Rothko at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, New York. There are also photographs depicting three men posing as Léger's "Three Musicians" and the visit of Queen Elizabeth II to the Art Institute of Chicago. There is a photograph by Peter Pollack of an elk skull used as a model by Georgia O'Keeffe.

Additional photographs of friends and colleagues include Ivan Albright, Alfred Barr, Alexander Calder, Marc Chagall, Willem De Kooning, Edwin Dickinson, Marcel Duchamp, Claire Falkenstein, Alberto Giacometti, poet Robert Graves with Len Lye, Philip Johnson, Gyorgy and Juliet Kepes, Carlos Mérida, José Orozco, Hasan Ozbekhan, Pablo Picasso, Carl Sandberg, Ben Shahn, Otto Spaeth, Hedda Sterne, Adlai Stevenson, Clyfford Still, Mark Tobey, and composer Victor Young.

Photographs of artwork include totem poles in Alaska; work by various artists including Claire Falkenstein, Paul Klee, and Hedda Sterne; and work donated to the Guggenheim Museum.

Four audio recordings on cassette are of Katharine Kuh's lectures, including one about assembling corporate collections, and of Daniel Catton Rich reading his own poetry. There is also a recording of the Second Annual Dialogue between Broadcasters and Museum Educators.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 9 series. Undated correspondence, artwork, and photographs of individual artists are arranged alphabetically. Otherwise, each series is arranged chronologically.

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1945-1992 (Box 1; 16 folders)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1908-1994 (Boxes 1-5, 13-14, OV 15; 4.0 linear feet)

Series 3: Personal Business Records, 1941-1989 (Box 5; 19 folders)

Series 4: Artwork, 1931-1986 (Boxes 5, 13-14, OVs 15-23; 1.7 linear feet)

Series 5: Notes and Writings, 1914-1994 (Boxes 5-7; 1.7 linear feet)

Series 6: Scrapbooks, 1935-1953 (Box 7; 8 folders)

Series 7: Printed Material, 1916-1992 (Boxes 7-10, 13, OV 22; 3.0 linear feet)

Series 8: Photographs, 1875-1993 (Boxes 10-13; 1.2 linear feet)

Series 9: Audio Recordings, 1977 (Box 12; 1 folder)
Biographical Note:
Katharine Kuh (1904-1994) worked primarily in the Chicago area as an modern art historian, dealer, critic, curator, writer, and consultant. She operated the Katharine Kuh Gallery from 1935-1943 and was the first woman curator of European and Art and Sculpture at the Art Institute of Chicago.

Katharine Kuh (née Woolf) was born on July 15, 1904 in St. Louis, Missouri, the youngest of the three daughters of Olga Weiner and Morris Woolf, a silk importer. In 1909, the family moved to Chicago, Illinois. While traveling with her family in Europe in 1914, Katharine contracted polio, causing her to spend the next decade in a body brace. During this time of restricted movement, she developed an interest in art history through the collecting of old master prints.

After her recovery, Katharine Woolf attended Vassar College where one of her professors, Alfred Barr, encouraged her to study modern art. She graduated from Vassar in 1925 and received a master's degree in art history from the University of Chicago in 1929. Later that year, she moved to New York to pursue a Ph.D. in Renaissance and medieval art at New York University.

In 1930, Katharine Woolf returned to Chicago and married businessman George Kuh and began to teach art history courses in the suburbs of Chicago. After divorcing George Kuh in 1935, she opened the Katharine Kuh Gallery, the first gallery devoted to avant-garde art in Chicago. It was also the first gallery to exhibit photography and typographical design as art forms, and featured the work of Ansel Adams, Josef Albers, Alexander Calder, Wassily Kandinsky, Fernand Léger, and Man Ray, among others. From 1938 to1940, Kuh was the Visiting Professor of Art at the University School of Fine Arts, San Miguel, Mexico.

After the Katharine Kuh Gallery closed in 1943, Kuh was hired by museum director Daniel Catton Rich to fill a position in public relations at the Art Institute of Chicago. During the following years, Kuh edited the museum's Quarterly publication, took charge of the museum's Gallery of Interpretive Art, and began a long term relationship with Rich. In 1946, Kuh was sent on a special mission for the U. S. Office of Indian Affairs to make a detailed study of Native American totemic carvings in Alaska.

In 1949, Kuh persuaded Mr. and Mrs. Walter Arensberg of Los Angeles to exhibit their collection of modern art, creating the first post-war exhibition of modern art in Chicago. She published her first book Art Has Many Faces in 1951, and in the following year, she began writing art criticism for The Saturday Review. In 1954, Kuh was appointed the first woman curator of European Art and Sculpture at the Art Institute. She assembled the American contribution for the Venice Biennale in 1956 and during these years, Kuh helped acquire many of the works of modern art currently in the museum's collection.

A year following Daniel Catton Rich's 1958 resignation from the Art Institute of Chicago, Kuh also resigned and pursued a career in New York as an art collection advisor, most notably for the First National Bank of Chicago. In 1959, Kuh was made art critic for The Saturday Review, and she continued to publish books, including The Artist's Voice in 1962, Break-Up: The Core of Modern Art in 1965, and The Open Eye: In Pursuit of Art in 1971.

Katharine Kuh died on January 10, 1994 in New York City.
Provenance:
The Katharine Kuh papers were donated in several installments from 1971 to 1989 by Katharine Kuh and in 1994 by her estate. Artwork was donated in 1995 by Kuh's former employer, the Art Institute of Chicago.
Restrictions:
Authorization to quote, publish or reproduce requires written permission until 2019. Contact the Archives of American Art Reference Services department for additional 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:
Authors -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
Art historians -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
Art dealers -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
Topic:
Art, Abstract -- United States  Search this
Art, American  Search this
Art festivals  Search this
Women art critics -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
Women art dealers  Search this
Women art historians  Search this
Women museum curators  Search this
Women authors  Search this
Women art critics  Search this
Genre/Form:
Illustrated letters
Resumes
Travel diaries
Minutes
Calendars
Visitors' books
Photographs
Paintings
Awards
Drawings
Sound recordings
Collages
Scrapbooks
Lithographs
Prints
Wills
Watercolors
Poetry
Lecture notes
Lectures
Sales records
Citation:
Katharine Kuh papers, 1875-1994, bulk 1930-1994. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.kuhkath
See more items in:
Katharine Kuh papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-kuhkath

Correspondence

Collection Creator:
Kuh, Katharine  Search this
Extent:
(Boxes 1-5, 13-14, OV 15; 4.0 linear feet)
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1908-1994
Scope and Contents note:
Correspondence is between Kuh, her mother, friends, and colleagues and discuss her study of art history, her travels, her work at the Art Institute of Chicago, as a corporate art advisor, and as an author. Many letters are illustrated with original artwork including a card from Denise René containing a silkscreen print by Vasarely. There is extensive correspondence with staff of the Art Institute of Chicago, the First National Bank of Chicago, and The Saturday Review.

Additional notable correspondents include Walter and Louise Arensberg, Cosmo Campoli, Serge Chermayeff, Richard Cox, Worden Day, Claire Falkenstein, Fred Friendly, Leon Golub, Joseph Goto, David Hare, Denise Brown Hare, Jean Hélion, Ray Johnson, Gyorgy and Juliet Kepes, Len Lye, Wallace Putnam, Kurt Seligmann, Shelby Shackelford, Hedda Sterne, Clyfford Still, and Kuh's mother, Olga Woolf.

There are also scattered letters from Josef Albers, Ivan Albright, Saradell Ard, Elise Asher, Alfred Barr, George Biddle, Marcel Breuer, Joseph Cornell, Stuart Davis, Edwin Dickinson, Werner Drewes, Elsie Driggs, Jimmy Ernst, Philip Evergood, Lorser Feitelson, Joseph Friebert, Naum Gabo, Lee Gatch, John Davis Hatch, Clinton Hill, Joseph Hirshhorn, Hans Hofmann, Fernand Léger, Seymour Lipton, Carlos Mérida, Reuben Nakian, Isamu Noguchi, Philip Pavia, Daniel Catton Rich, Theodore Roszak, Dorothea Tanning, Lenore Tawney, Jack Tworkov, Dr. Vincent W. Van Gogh, Hugo Weber, Emerson Woelffer, and Robert Jay Wolff.
Collection Restrictions:
Authorization to quote, publish or reproduce requires written permission until 2019. Contact the Archives of American Art Reference Services department for additional information.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Katharine Kuh papers, 1875-1994, bulk 1930-1994. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.kuhkath, Series 2
See more items in:
Katharine Kuh papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-kuhkath-ref26

Collage by Ray Johnson

Collection Creator:
Nesbitt, Lowell, 1933-1993  Search this
Container:
Box 16, Folder 3
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
undated
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Lowell Nesbitt papers, circa 1903-1993 (bulk 1950-1993). Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Lowell Nesbitt papers
Lowell Nesbitt papers / Series 7: Artwork / 7.2: Artwork by Others
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-nesblowe-ref476

"Ray Johnson Letters," North Carolina Museum of Art

Collection Creator:
Kiesler, Lillian, 1910?-2001  Search this
Container:
Box 22, Folder 14
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1975-1976
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Lillian and Frederick Kiesler papers, circa 1910s-2003, bulk 1958-2000. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Lillian and Frederick Kiesler papers
Lillian and Frederick Kiesler papers / Series 1: Lillian Kiesler papers / 1.10: Papers Related to Frederick Kiesler / 1.10.5: Exhibition Files
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-kieslill-ref448

Oral history interview with Manny Silverman

Interviewee:
Silverman, Manny  Search this
Interviewer:
Ayres, Anne, 1936-  Search this
Names:
Ernest Raboff Gallery  Search this
Johnson, Ray, 1927-1995  Search this
Tuchman, Maurice  Search this
Extent:
47 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
2004 December 10-11
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Manny Silverman conducted 2004 December 10-11, by Ann Ayres, for the Archives of American Art, in Los Angeles, California.
Silverman discusses his Russo-Jewish parents and his childhood as an only child in Los Angeles; working as a social worker before starting at the Ernest Raboff Gallery as a research assistant; starting Art Services with Jerry Solomon; opening his own gallery on La Cienega Boulevard; his LA dealer contemporaries; moving his gallery to Almont Drive; Maurice Tuchman's exhibitions at LACMA; the critic's denigration of younger Abstract Expressionists; and ideas on how artists are influenced by other artists. Silverman also mentions the political aspects of museums; his tastes in assemblage artworks; becoming involved in the Ray Johnson estate and how he handles the estates of the deceased artists he displays; his belief in the precedence of the artist's creation, not the ideas leading to the work; his anti-intellectual view of his profession; the positives and negatives of running a gallery with a narrow focus on Abstract Expressionism; the importance of classical art training, even for unconventional artists; the painting habits of certain Abstract Expressionists; Sam Francis's poster for George McGovern's 1972 presidential campaign; his thoughts on various LA-based curators; the role of his wife in his gallery; his perceived overemphasis on the 1960s LA art scene; and society's values in regards to artwork. Silverman also recalls Paul Schimmel, Paul McCarthy, Rudi Gernreich, Philip Guston, Edward Dugmore, Klaus Kurtess, Paul Kantor, Joan Mitchell, Nicholas Wilder, Gerhard Richter, David Stuart, Shaun Regan, Al Ruppersberg, Russell Ferguson, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Interviewee Manny Silverman (1941- ) is an art dealer from Los Angeles, California. Anne Ayres (1936- ) is a curator from Los Angeles, California.
General:
Originally recorded on 2 sound discs. Reformatted in 2010 as 5 digital wav files. Duration is 2 hr., 37 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.
Restrictions:
Transcript available on the Archives of American Art website.
Occupation:
Art dealers -- California -- Los Angeles  Search this
Topic:
Curators -- California -- Los Angeles  Search this
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Abstract expressionism  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.silver04
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-silver04

Robert Smithson and Nancy Holt papers

Creator:
Smithson, Robert  Search this
Names:
Dwan Gallery (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art  Search this
Andre, Carl, 1935-  Search this
Atkinson, Terry, 1939-  Search this
Dibbets, Jan, 1941-  Search this
Dwan, Virginia  Search this
Flavin, Dan, 1933-  Search this
Graham, Dan, 1942-  Search this
Haacke, Hans, 1936-  Search this
Heizer, Michael, 1944-  Search this
Holt, Nancy, 1938-  Search this
Insley, Will, 1929-2011  Search this
Jenney, Neil, 1945-  Search this
Johnson, Ray, 1927-  Search this
Kepes, Gyorgy, 1906-2001  Search this
LeWitt, Sol, 1928-2007  Search this
Lippard, Lucy R.  Search this
Long, Richard, 1945-  Search this
Oppenheim, Dennis, 1938-2011  Search this
Valledor, Leo, 1936-1989  Search this
Wheeler, Dennis  Search this
Extent:
15.1 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Interviews
Sketches
Scrapbooks
Greeting cards
Photographs
Transcripts
Motion pictures (visual works)
Date:
1905-1987
bulk 1952-1987
Summary:
The papers of sculptor, writer, and earthworks artist Robert Smithson and his wife, sculptor, filmmaker, and earthworks artist Nancy Holt measure 15.1 linear feet and date from 1905 to 1987, with the bulk of the material dating from 1952 to 1987. The papers consist of Smithson's biographical material; business and personal correspondence, much of it with artists; interview transcripts; extensive writings and project files; financial records; printed material; a scrapbook of clippings; holiday cards with original prints and sketches; photographic material; and artifacts. Also found are project files related to Nancy Holt's motion picture film Pine Barrens and her seminal environmental work of art Sun Tunnels, including a video documentary about Sun Tunnels.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of sculptor, writer, and earthworks artist Robert Smithson and his wife, sculptor, filmmaker, and earthworks artist Nancy Holt measure 15.1 linear feet and date from 1905 to 1987, with the bulk of the material dating from 1952 to 1987. The papers consist of Smithson's biographical material; business and personal correspondence, much of it with artists; interview transcripts; extensive writings and project files; financial records; printed material; a scrapbook of clippings; holiday cards with original prints and sketches; photographic material; and artifacts. Also found are project files related to Nancy Holt's film Pine Barrens and her seminal environmental work of art Sun Tunnels, including a video documentary about Sun Tunnels.

Biographical material includes Robert Smithson's curriculum vitae, personal identification and medical documents, eight engagement/day planners Smithson and Holt maintained from 1966 to 1973, and Smithson's funeral register.

Correspondence is primarily with Smithson's family, friends, fellow artists, and business associates discussing personal relationships, proposed art projects, and exhibitions. Correspondents of note include Carl Andre, the Dwan Gallery (Virginia Dwan), Dan Graham, Will Insley, Ray Johnson, Gyorgy Kepes, Sol Lewitt, Lucy Lippard, and Dennis Wheeler. There is also substantial correspondence received by Holt upon Smithson's death in 1973, and between Holt and the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art regarding Smithson's retrospective exhibition in 1982.

There are nine interview transcripts with Smithson discussing his works and his general philosophy on art, and one transcript of the Andrew Dickson White Museum's Earth Art Symposium (1969) featuring the following artists: Mike Hiezer, Dennis Oppenheim, Robert Smithson, Neil Jenney, Gunther Uecker, Jan Dibbets, Richard Long, and Hans Haacke.

Writings are substantial and include 73 drafts of published and unpublished essays by Smithson on art, artists, and works in progress. The series also includes poems by Smithson, six notebooks containing notes and sketches by Smithson, and drafts of writings sent to Smithson and Holt by friends and colleagues, including Carl Andre, Terry Atkinson, Dan Flavin, Dan Graham, and Jack Thibeau.

Project files contain correspondence, project instructions, diagrams and sketches, research materials, photographic material, and maps related to over 50 of Smithson's artworks. These include concepts, proposed projects, sculptures, non-sites, and earthwork projects, including Spiral Jetty, Broken Circle, and Spiral Hill.

Personal business records include gallery related loan arrangements and receipts for miscellaneous art supplies. Financial records include tax forms and preparation documents, including cancelled checks, receipts, statements, and related correspondence.

Printed materials include books, clippings, and periodicals related to Smithson, either containing writings or sketches by him, or containing articles reviewing his work. There are also exhibition announcements and catalogs of Smithson's group and solo shows from 1959 to 1985.

The scrapbook contains clippings of Smithson's published articles from 1966 to 1973 with annotated shorthand notes.

Artwork consists of Christmas cards collaged by Smithson, and sketches by Smithson and Leo Valledor.

Photographic materials include prints and negatives of Smithson with friends, promotional Hollywood movie stills, and original prints and copyprints of other artists' artwork.

Artifacts consist of a paper bag silkscreened with a Campbell's soup can (Warhol), promotional buttons (N.E. Thing Co.), various organic materials, and two art kits.

Nancy Holt's papers consist of correspondence, a grant application, printed materials, and project files and audio visual material related to her motion picture film Pine Barrens (1975) and her seminal environmental work of art Sun Tunnels (1975).
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 13 series:

Series 1: Biographical Materials, 1905-1974 (Box 1; 14 folders)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1959-1987 (Boxes 1-2, OV 21; 1.7 linear feet)

Series 3: Interview Transcripts, 1966-1973 (Box 2; 11 folders)

Series 4: Writings, 1959-1975 (Boxes 2-3; 1.1 linear feet)

Series 5: Project Files, circa 1950s-1982 (Boxes 4-5, Boxes 17-18, OV 20, OV 22-26, OV 36, RD 28-30, RD 32-35; 6.5 linear feet)

Series 6: Personal Business Records, circa 1967-1970s (Box 5; 4 folders)

Series 7: Financial Records, 1962-1972 (Box 6; 1 linear foot)

Series 8: Printed Material, 1955-1985 (Boxes 7-11, Box 18, RD 31; 5.6 linear feet)

Series 9: Scrapbook, 1966-1973 (Box 11, Box 16; 0.3 linear feet)

Series 10: Artwork, circa 1950s-1970s (Box 11; 4 folders)

Series 11: Photographs, circa 1950s-1970s (Box 11, Box 18; 5 folders)

Series 12: Artifacts, circa 1950s-1970s (Box 11, Box 14, OV 19; 0.5 linear feet)

Series 13: Nancy Holt Papers, circa 1960s-1980s (Box 12-13, 15, OV 27, FC 37-38; 1.9 linear feet)
Biographical Note:
Robert Smithson (1938-1973) was the pioneer of land and earthworks art. He was also a noted sculptor, painter, writer, and lecturer working primarily in New York City. Smithson's wife, Nancy Holt (1938-) was a noted sculptor and filmmaker and also worked as an earthworks artist.

Born in Passaic, New Jersey, Smithson expressed an early interest in art, enrolling in classes at the Brooklyn Museum School and the Art Student's League in New York while still attending high school. Smithson's early works were primarily paintings, drawings, and collages. In 1959, he exhibited his first solo show of paintings at the Artists' Gallery in New York and had his first solo international show in Rome with the Galleria George Lester in 1961.

During the early to mid-1960s, Smithson was perhaps better known as a writer and art critic, writing numerous essays and reviews for Arts Magazine and Artforum. He became affiliated with artists who were identified with the minimalist movement, such as Carl Andre, Donald Judd, Nancy Holt, Sol LeWitt, Robert Morris and others. In 1963, Smithson married sculptor and filmmaker Nancy Holt and a year later started to create his first sculptural works. In 1966, Smithson joined the Dwan Gallery, whose owner Virginia Dwan was an enthusiastic supporter of his work.

Smithson's interest in land art began in the late 1960s while exploring industrial and quarry sites and observing the movement of earth and rocks. This resulted in a series of sculptures called "non-sites" consisting of earth and rocks collected from a specific site and installed in gallery space, often combined with photographs, maps, mirrors, or found materials. In September 1968, Smithson published the essay "A Sedimentation of the Mind: Earth Projects" in Artforum that promoted the work of the first wave of land art artists. Soon thereafter, he began creating his own large scale land art and earthworks.

From 1967 to 1973, Smithson's productivity was constant as he wrote, lectured, and participated in several solo and group shows a year, both at home and abroad. He explored narrative art as essay in "The Monuments of Passaic" and fully committed to his idea of visiting sites and using them as the basis for creating non-sites, Non-Site, Pine Barrens, (1968); incorporated and documented the use of mirrors at sites in Mirror Displacement, Cayuga Salt Mine Project (1968-1969); and created his first site-specific works through liquid pours of mud, asphalt, and concrete, including Asphalt Rundown (1969). In 1969, he also completed his first earth pour at Kent State University with his project Partially Buried Woodshed. Later that year, he created the sculptural artwork for which he is best known, Spiral Jetty (1969) on the Great Salt Lake in Utah. This was the first of his pieces to require the acquisition of land rights and earthmoving equipment, and would be followed two years later by Broken Circle and Spiral Hill in 1971.

On July 20, 1973, while surveying sites in Texas for the proposed Amarillo Ramp, Smithson died in a plane crash at the age of 35. Despite his early death, Smithson's writings and artwork had a major impact on many contemporary artists.

Nancy Holt began her career as a photographer and video artist. Today, Holt is most widely known for her large-scale environmental works, Sun Tunnels and Dark Star Park. Holt has also made a number of films and videos since the late 1960s, including Mono Lake (1968), East Coast, West Coast (1969), and Swamp (1971) in collaboration with her late husband Robert Smithson. Points of View: Clocktower (1974) features conversations between Lucy Lippard and Richard Serra, Liza Bear and Klaus Kertess, Carl Andre and Ruth Kligman and Bruce Brice and Tina Girouard. In 1978, she produced a film about her seminal work Sun Tunnels.
Related Material:
The Archives also holds several collections related to Robert Smithson and Nancy Holt, including an oral history interview with Robert Smithson conducted by Paul Cummings in 1972; an interview with Robert Smithson conducted by Tony Robbin in 1968; Robert Smithson letters to George B. Lester, 1960-1963; and oral history interviews with Nancy Holt conducted by Scott Gutterman in 1992 and Joyce Pomeroy Schwartz in 1993.
Provenance:
The papers of Robert Smithson and Nancy Holt were donated by Nancy Holt in several accretions between 1986 and 2011.
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.

Researchers interested in accessing audiovisual recordings in this collection must use access copies.

Periodicals, and phonographs from Robert Smithson's personal library are currently stored offsite. Contact References 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.
The donor has retained all intellectual property rights, including copyright, that they may own in the following material: two holiday cards found in box 11, folders 23-24.
Topic:
Sculptors -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Authors -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Art -- Philosophy  Search this
Earthworks (Art)  Search this
Filmmakers -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Sketches
Scrapbooks
Greeting cards
Photographs
Transcripts
Motion pictures (visual works)
Citation:
Robert Smithson and Nancy Holt papers, 1905-1987, bulk 1952-1987. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.smitrobe
See more items in:
Robert Smithson and Nancy Holt papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-smitrobe
Online Media:

General

Collection Creator:
Smithson, Robert  Search this
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1961-1984
Scope and Contents note:
General correspondence includes a handful of letters drafted by Smithson and Holt, with the bulk of the subseries comprising of letters from artists, art critics, collectors, museums, galleries, art organizations, universities, real estate brokers, and businesses.

There is correspondence of note from the Dwan Gallery (Virginia Dwan) and from artist friends Carl Andre, Dan Flavin, Konrad Fischer, Dan Graham, Peter Hutchinson, Will Insley, Ray Johnson, Gyorgy Kepes, Sol Lewitt, Lucy Lippard, Toby Mussman, Claes Oldenburg, Dennis Oppenheim, Robert Wade, and Dennis Wheeler. There is also substatial correspondence between Holt and Robert Hobbs regarding the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art's retrospective Smithson exhibition in 1982.
Collection 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.

Researchers interested in accessing audiovisual recordings in this collection must use access copies.

Periodicals, and phonographs from Robert Smithson's personal library are currently stored offsite. Contact References Services for more information.
Collection 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.
The donor has retained all intellectual property rights, including copyright, that they may own in the following material: two holiday cards found in box 11, folders 23-24.
Collection Citation:
Robert Smithson and Nancy Holt papers, 1905-1987, bulk 1952-1987. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.smitrobe, Subseries 2.2
See more items in:
Robert Smithson and Nancy Holt papers
Robert Smithson and Nancy Holt papers / Series 2: Correspondence
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-smitrobe-ref31

Artwork

Collection Creator:
Sarchiapone, Cosmos Andrew, 1931-2011  Search this
Extent:
10.5 Linear feet (Box 27-34, 47-48, OV 81-104)
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1947-2000s
Scope and Contents:
There is extensive documentation of Cosmos's named conceptual art projects and series and his photocopied compilations or presentations. Drawings, illustrations, paintings,collages, and sketchbooks are also found, but to a lesser extent. There is also some scattered artwork, mostly prints, by others, including Milton Glaser, Alex Hay, Douglas Huebler, Marvin Israel, Ray Johnson, Ellsworth Kelly, and Eve Sonneman.
Arrangement:
The series is arranged as four subseries

7.1: Named Art Projects and Series, 1960s-2000s

7.2: Compilations, 1970s-2000s

7.3: Drawings, Illustrations, Paintings, Collages, and Sketchbooks, 1947-1990s

7.4: Artwork by Others, 1959-2000s
Collection 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 copy requires advance notice.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Cosmos Andrew Sarchiapone papers, circa 1860-2011, bulk 1940-2011. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.sarccosm, Series 7
See more items in:
Cosmos Andrew Sarchiapone papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-sarccosm-ref1059

Artwork by Others

Collection Creator:
Sarchiapone, Cosmos Andrew, 1931-2011  Search this
Extent:
0.5 Linear feet (Box 34, OV 102-104)
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1959-2000s
Scope and Contents:
Artwork by others consists of an artist book, conceptual work, drawings, a sketchbook, and prints by Milton Glaser, Alex Hay, Douglas Huebler, Marvin Israel, Margaret Israel, Ray Johnson, Ellsworth Kelly, and Eve Sonneman. Also found here is artwork by children and unidentified artists.
Collection 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 copy requires advance notice.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Cosmos Andrew Sarchiapone papers, circa 1860-2011, bulk 1940-2011. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.sarccosm, Subseries 7.4
See more items in:
Cosmos Andrew Sarchiapone papers
Cosmos Andrew Sarchiapone papers / Series 7: Artwork
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-sarccosm-ref35

Ray Johnson

Collection Creator:
Sarchiapone, Cosmos Andrew, 1931-2011  Search this
Container:
Box 17, Folder 38
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1970s
Collection 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 copy requires advance notice.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Cosmos Andrew Sarchiapone papers, circa 1860-2011, bulk 1940-2011. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Cosmos Andrew Sarchiapone papers
Cosmos Andrew Sarchiapone papers / Series 6: Photographic Material / 6.2: Exhibitions and Performances / Exhibitions
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-sarccosm-ref508

Ray Johnson

Collection Creator:
Sarchiapone, Cosmos Andrew, 1931-2011  Search this
Container:
Box 34, Folder 18
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1972
Collection 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 copy requires advance notice.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Cosmos Andrew Sarchiapone papers, circa 1860-2011, bulk 1940-2011. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Cosmos Andrew Sarchiapone papers
Cosmos Andrew Sarchiapone papers / Series 7: Artwork / 7.4: Artwork by Others
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-sarccosm-ref727

Correspondence

Collection Creator:
Solomon, Alan R., 1920-1970  Search this
Extent:
0.66 Linear feet (Box 1)
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1930-1970
Scope and Contents:
Correspondence documents Solomon's education, teaching appointments, and his relationships with various artists, publishers, museums and other art institutions, and colleagues.

Correspondence with Centro de Artes Visuales, including with Jorge Romero Brest and Alfredo Rodriguez Arias, relates to proposals for New York performances by the organization, and the possibility of circulating Solomon's Young Italians exhibition in South America.

Correspondence with Cornell University relates primarily to Solomon's appointments to various teaching positions at Cornell in the 1950s, and his promotion to Associate Professor of Fine Arts in 1962. Documentation relating to the Andrew Dickson White Museum of Art, which Solomon established in 1953, is limited to correspondence regarding a dispute over who should replace Solomon as director of the museum in 1961.

Correspondence with Harvard relates to Solomon's studies at Harvard College and later Harvard University, including the completion of his doctorate and his thesis on Picasso, and his teaching appointments at Harvard. It also documents Solomon's gifts to the Harvard College Fund. Records relating to specific courses taken and taught by Solomon can be found in Series 5: Teaching and Study Files.

Correspondence with the Jewish Museum relates primarily to the details of negotiations and terms under which Solomon was hired as the museum's director in 1962, but provides only cursory documentation of Solomon's Rauschenberg and Johns exhibitions in 1963 and 1964 respectively. Additional documentation on Solomon's work at the museum can be found in the Jewish Museum subject file in Series 6.

Publishers and publications represented here include James Fitzsimmons, of the publication Art International, and the Swedish art review, Konstrevy, for whom Solomon wrote articles on Jim Dine. Correspondence with National Educational Television provides contractual details of Solomon's appointment as a writer and consultant for the "Art U. S. A." series on contemporary American painters, and documents expenses related to that role.

Correspondence with Frank Lloyd of Marlborough-Gerson Gallery, Inc., includes details of a proposed project to establish an International Art Center in Rome.

Three folders of correspondence with Eugene Schwartz document Solomon's interest in the market for non-original works of art, or works about American art. Solomon worked with Schwartz's Mass Originals, Inc. corporation, on an enterprise to create fifty-minute taped lectures, with slides, for sales to universities, museums, and libraries. The correspondence includes letters from Schwartz outlining his proposals to create a market for the lectures, letters to artists asking for their participation in the project, and the responses of some of the artists.

Correspondence with the University of California relates to arrangements for speaking engagements, and also references Solomon's appointment to the University of California, Irvine, in 1968, and arrangements for the exhibition, Tony DeLap: The Last Five Years, 1963-1968 (1969), at the Art Gallery, University of California, Irvine.

There is one folder of correspondence with Connie Trimble, who provided secretarial services for Solomon in the 1960s. This correspondence provides details of arrangements for various projects in which Solomon was involved, including Expo '67.

Individual items of note include a postcard and Christmas card from Christo and Jeanne-Claude; a letter from Ray Johnson; two postcards from Claes Oldenburg; a postcard from Robert Rauschenberg with a photo of Rauschenberg and others, including Christo and Jean-Claude; and a 1966 greeting card from Galeria Bonino, New York, which includes a limited edition signed and numbered print by Luis Felipe Noé.

The bulk of the correspondence documenting Solomon's work as an exhibition organizer and curator can generally be found in Series 8: Exhibition Files. Additional records documenting his relationships with artists and art organizations can be found in Series 6: Subject Files.
Arrangement:
Records are arranged alphabetically by correspondent or subject, and chronologically thereafter.
Collection 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.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Alan R. Solomon papers, 1907-1970, bulk 1944-1970. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.soloalan, Series 2
See more items in:
Alan R. Solomon papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-soloalan-ref2

General Correspondence

Collection Creator:
Cornell, Joseph  Search this
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1909-1982
Scope and Contents note:
Subseries consists of correspondence between Cornell and friends, artists, dealers, collectors, galleries, museums, admirers, individuals whom he admired or with whom he was especially preoccupied, "helpers," and charitable institutions. Included are letters (in some instances, with photographs or poems enclosed), postcards, and greeting cards, as well as some art work, three-dimensional objects, and artifacts. Also included are some notes and printed material, such as newspaper and magazine clippings, pamphlets, brochures, publications, and publicity material, pertaining to individuals, institutions, and/or topics in which Cornell had a particular interest.

Correspondence documents some of Cornell's activities involved in creating his art work, such as his practice of using multiple copies of a single image in many of his works (as in a letter from John Allen referring to Cornell's order for multiple prints of a Loie Fuller image); his early attempts to advertise his art work (as in letters from the Blaker Advertising Agency, Columbia Records, Inc., and N. W. Ayer and Son); and his later, oftentimes hesitant, transactions with galleries and dealers, including Irving Blum, Charles Egan, Richard Feigen, Julien Levy, Robert Schoelkopf, and Eleanor Ward ( See also Series 1). Correspondence relates to the sale of his art work to galleries and individual collectors, and the exhibition of his art work in museums, including the Cleveland Museum of Art, Guggenheim Museum ( See Diane Waldman and Tom Messer), Pasadena Art Museum, and Whitney Museum ( See also John Baur).

The positive reception of Cornell's art work is documented in many letters from admirers (including poet, Paul Carroll, who wrote two poems about Cornell's art work, the Fourth Grade Class at Murray Avenue School, actress, Eva Marie Saint, and author, Glenway Wescott, among others). The critical reception of Cornell's art work is documented in the many letters from people who have written or express interest in writing an article about Cornell (including Howard Griffin from Art News, David Bourdon from Life magazine, and Brian O'Doherty, author of American Masters: The Voice and the Myth, among others).

Correspondence also concerns some of Cornell's major "explorations," including ones on the singers, Maria Malibran and Giuditta Pasta (as in letters from the English scholar, Richard Coe), and the ballerina, Fanny Cerrito (as in letters from Lillian Moore). Correspondence relates to his other research and collecting activities and includes numerous letters responding to his requests for information and/or material from institutions, such as the Harvard College Library, dealers, such as C. and I. K. Fletcher, and individuals, such as Marian Hannah Winter.

Correspondence documents Cornell's preoccupations with certain dancers (such as Allegra Kent, Tanaquil LeClerq, and Tamara Toumanova), actresses (such as Lois Smith), artists (Lee Bontecou), and other young women; his relationships with other artists, both young and established, including Piero Dorazio, Ray Johnson, Hubert Kappel, Roberto Matta Echauren, Dorothea Tanning, and Pavel Tchelitchew, among others; and his friendships and shared interests with individuals, such as Wayne Andrews, Charles Henri Ford, Parker Tyler, Donald Windham, and Marian Hannah Winter (their letters often entailing an exchange of ideas on topics such as literature, music, dance, art, and the pleasures of collecting). Correspondence also documents his generosity (in terms of gift giving) toward his friends (and their children) and individuals whom he admired (as in letters and notes of thanks for gifts of art work from Valerie Adams, George Bennette, Lee Bontecou, Susan Sontag, Jessica Tandy, and Tamara Toumanova, among others); and his generosity toward institutions providing public services to the less fortunate (as in letters acknowledging and expressing gratitude for donations from the New York Institute for the Education of the Blind and the Bedside Network, among others).

General correspondence is arranged in files according to correspondent and then alphabetically according the surname of the individual or the name of the institution. Items are arranged in rough chronological order within each file. When only a few items (typically less than three) are associated with a correspondent, these are arranged into general alphabetical files. Unidentified and miscellaneous items are arranged into files at the end of the subseries.
Collection Restrictions:
Use of the original papers requires an appointment.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Joseph Cornell papers, 1804-1986, bulk 1939-1972. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.cornjose, Subseries 2.1
See more items in:
Joseph Cornell papers
Joseph Cornell papers / Series 2: Correspondence
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-cornjose-ref43

Subject Files

Collection Creator:
Deem, George, 1932-2008  Search this
Extent:
1 Linear foot (Boxes 6-8)
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
circa 1960-circa 2013
Scope and Contents:
Subject files are composed of a variety of materials including correspondence, business records, printed material, and photographs. They document transactions with museums, commercial galleries, and art consultants. Correspondence with Alan Stone Gallery chronicles Deem's early career as a painter. Other files concern donations of artwork to fundraising auctions, gifts of art and books to the New Britain Museum of American Art, and Deem's art collection. Files relating to mail art exhibitions document Deem's participation; also included is mail art correspondence (mostly photocopies) with a few letters from Deem to fellow artists as well as letters from Richard Copy, Ray Johnson, and Jean-Noel Laszlo. Also found are subject files regardings Deem's paintings and drawings in public and private collections.
Arrangement:
This series is alphabetized by folder title. Subject files are also included in the addition to the George Deem papers (Series 9).
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original material requires an appointment. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
George Deem papers, 1904-2015, bulk 1960-2008. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.deemgeor, Series 4
See more items in:
George Deem papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-deemgeor-ref15

Ray Johnson

Collection Creator:
DeMott, Helen, 1920-1997  Search this
Extent:
1 Folder (Box 4)
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1947, 1963, undated
Scope and Contents note:
Found is one folder of scattered letters, mail art, exhibition fliers, and collages by collagist Ray Johnson.
Collection Restrictions:
The collection is open for research. Use requires an appointment.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Helen DeMott papers, 1896-1997. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.demohele, Series 8
See more items in:
Helen DeMott papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-demohele-ref110

Collages/Mail Art/Letters

Collection Creator:
DeMott, Helen, 1920-1997  Search this
Container:
Box 4, Folder 11
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1947, 1963, undated
Collection Restrictions:
The collection is open for research. Use requires an appointment.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Helen DeMott papers, 1896-1997. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Helen DeMott papers
Helen DeMott papers / Series 8: Ray Johnson
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-demohele-ref111

Artist Files

Collection Creator:
Johnson, Ellen H.  Search this
Extent:
18.3 Linear feet (Boxes 37-55)
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1935-1992
Scope and Contents:
This series consists of materials about artists and others, assembled by Johnson, including artists' and other correspondence, clippings, museum announcements and brochures (including four 45rpm records), notes, and photographic materials. The bulk of the material focuses on contemporary, especially American, artists, including Fletcher Benton, Mary Cassatt, Alexander Calder, Christo, Joseph Cornell, Stuart Davis, Willem de Kooning, Agnes Denes, Jim Dine, Arshile Gorky, Red Grooms, Jasper Johns, Ray Johnson, Roy Lichtenstein, Robert Motherwell, Alice Neel, Claes Oldenburg, Jackson Pollock, Robert Rauschenberg, James, Rosenquist, Richard Serra, Frank Stella, Jackie Winsor, and Andy Warhol, among many others. There are also a few folders on European artists.
Arrangement:
Named files were maintained by Johnson according to groups of artists or individual artists; both sets are alphabetical.
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Washington D.C. Center. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Ellen Hulda Johnson papers, 1872-2018, bulk 1921-1992. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.johnelle, Series 7
See more items in:
Ellen Hulda Johnson papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-johnelle-ref848

Marilynn Karp papers regarding Richard Lippold

Collection Creator:
Karp, Marilynn Gelfman  Search this
Extent:
0.8 Linear feet (Boxes 1-2)
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1949-2015
Scope and Contents:
Included are personal letters to Marilynn Karp from Richard Lippold and Ray Johnson regarding Lippold; records pertaining to the Richard Lippold Foundation and estate; a folder relating to Hunter College, where Karp was a student and Lippold taught; a video recorded interview with Richard Lippold by Franco Zeffirelli, photographs and negatives of Lippold in his studio, printed material, a project proposal for the World Trade Center Memorial, and a few writings by and about Lippold.
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate copies requires advance notice.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Marilynn Karp papers regarding Richard Lippold, 1949-2015. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.karpmari, Series 1
See more items in:
Marilynn Karp papers regarding Richard Lippold
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
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Correspondence

Collection Creator:
Smith, Leon Polk, 1906-1996  Search this
Extent:
5 Linear feet (Boxes 1-5, 9, OV 10)
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1939-1996
Scope and Contents note:
Correspondence is predominantly in the form of business letters and personal letters received from family and friends. This includes correspondence between Smith and his life companion, Robert Jamieson; art critics Arthur C. Danto, Claudine Humblet, and David Galloway; and artists Gego (Gertrude Goldschmidt) and Ray Johnson.

The bulk of the business correspondence relates to Smith's various gallery and museum exhibitions, loans, and sales. Outgoing correspondence, photographs, slides, and instructions on the installation of exhibitions have been chronologically interfiled within the correspondents' files. There is extensive correspondence between Smith and the Brooklyn Museum, Butler Institute of American Art, Di Laurenti Gallery, Edition and Galerie Hoffmann, Galerie Denise Rene, Meyers/Bloom Gallery, Washburn Gallery, and the Wilhelm-Hack Museum. The business subseries also includes correspondence between Smith and his alma mater, East Central University, formerly known as Oklahoma State University.
Arrangement note:
The bulk of this series has been scanned. Slides of artwork filed with Meyers/Bloom Gallery have not been scanned. The series is arranged as 2 subseries:

Subseries 2.1: Business, 1943-1996

Subseries 2.2: Personal, 1939-1997
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Leon Polk Smith papers, 1921-1997. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.smitleon, Series 2
See more items in:
Leon Polk Smith papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
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Correspondence with Artists and Others

Collection Creator:
Wagstaff, Samuel J.  Search this
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1932-1986
Scope and Contents note:
This subseries consists almost exclusively of incoming letters with a few carbon copies of Wagstaff's outgoing letters. There are a large number of illustrated letters, and many letters have printed items, photographs, and artwork as attachments.

Correspondence is with artists and others such as curators, arts organizations, galleries, and museums. The series reflects the diversity of contemporary American art and includes letters from individuals associated with the abstract expressionist, Fluxus, pop, earth, conceptual, and minimalist art movements. Wagstaff's importance as a collector and curator and his generosity to, and interest in, artists is evident from the large number of invitations to view and critique work, requests for fellowship and grant recommendations, and thank you notes from artists to whom he extended financial or moral support. Among the most prolific correspondents found here are: Dan Basen, George Brecht, James Lee Byars, Walter de Maria, Mark Di Suvero, Albert Fine, Dan Flavin, Ann Halprin, Grace Hartigan, Charles James, Philip Johnson, Ray Johnson, Doreen and Robert Manning, Agnes Martin, Gordon Newton, Claes Oldenburg, Ad Reinhardt, Dieter Rot, Alan Saret, Richard Tuttle, May Wilson, and Andy Warhol. Items of note are James Lee Byars's letters, many of which are extremely large and written on unusual surfaces such as clear plastic and pink toilet tissue, and a letter from Thomas Hart Benton that describes the early work of Jackson Pollock. Also included are many illustrated letters and examples of mail art. Some of the Byars letters could not be digitized due to their extreme size.
Collection Restrictions:
The collection has been digitized and is available online via AAA's website.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Samuel J. Wagstaff papers, circa 1932-1985. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.wagssamu, Subseries 1.1
See more items in:
Samuel J. Wagstaff papers
Samuel J. Wagstaff papers / Series 1: Correspondence
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-wagssamu-ref15

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