Primarily exhibition catalogs for modernist art exhibitions held in New York City during the first two decades of the twentieth century. Also included are catalogs for Boston exhibitions, mainly pre-1900, and a few other locales; exhibition announcements; gallery publications; and other printed material.
Scope and Content Note:
The collection comprises circa 770 items, dating from 1813-1953, the bulk of which are exhibition catalogs from New York City art galleries for the first two decades of the twentieth century, representing exhibitions of mainly modernist art. Catalogs for exhibitions held in Boston (mainly pre-1900) and a few other cities are also present. Included are several rare catalogs, notably one for the "Eight" held at Macbeth Gallery in 1908. Besides catalogs, the collection also contains exhibition announcements, gallery publications, and other printed material. The collection is especially relevant for the study of early American modernism, and is useful in understanding the role of art galleries, exhibitions, the art market, and the exhibition catalog itself, in American art.
The collection is arranged as 8 series representing alphabetical groups. Catalogs are arranged within these groups according to name of the sponsoring gallery, or if no gallery is listed, by the name of the club or organization. Catalogs are arranged chronologically thereafter, with undated material first. Many catalogs are undated, list only a year, or are annotated with a date. No attempt has been made to date or verify these at this time. Catalogs which are annotated with a date are filed chronologically, and are indicated with brackets around the date.
Series 1: Art Exhibition Catalogs, A-C
Series 2: Art Exhibition Catalogs, D-F
Series 3: Art Exhibition Catalogs, G-I
Series 4: Art Exhibition Catalogs, J-L
Series 5: Art Exhibition Catalogs, M-O
Series 6: Art Exhibition Catalogs, P-R
Series 7: Art Exhibition Catalogs, S-T
Series 8: Art Exhibition Catalogs, U-Z
In 1979, the American Antiquarian Society donated several hundred exhibition catalogs and art-related printed material to the Archives of American Art (AAA). The Society had received most of them over a long period of time, many of them addressed to the director, Charles Brigham. For several years subsequent to the donation, AAA sporadically added exhibition catalogs to the collection from various sources. Some of these additions are annotated in the hand of Walt Kuhn and are presumed to have been part of his papers in the Archives.
Researchers may find duplicate or related items in galleries' records held at the Archives of American Art. Additional or duplicate catalogs may appear in AAA's Catalog of Exhibition Catalogs (1979).
The bulk of the collection was donated 1979 by the American Antiquarian Society, who presumably assembled them from various sources. Others were received individually, while many are annotated in the hand of Walt Kuhn and are presumed to have originally been part of his papers in the Archives. In 2005, additional catalogs were integrated, some of which are presumed to have been removed from various collections over the years.
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Art, Modern -- 19th century -- Massachusetts -- Exhibitions Search this
Art, Modern -- 19th century -- New York (State) -- New York -- Exhibitions Search this
Ca. 7,000 exhibition catalogs published from the early nineteenth century to the 1960s for for exhibitions of American art held in galleries, museums, and art societies throughout the United States. The catalogs were microfilmed between 1964-1966, at libraries, museums and other institutions throughout the United States as part of the American Art Exhibition Catalog Project.
The Archives of American Art microfilmed the catalogs at libraries throughout the United States for an American Art Exhibition Catalog Project during 1964-1966. Among the institutions were the Architectural League of New York, Boston Antheneum, Boston Public Library, Columbia University, Cooper Union Museum, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the New York Public Library, Yivo Institute for Jewish Research, and many others. Some of the catalogs identified were included in individual collections of artists papers or organizational records. Researchers may also find exhibition catalogs in artists' papers and other collections in the Archives, although they are generally not described at the item level.
The Archives of American art does not own the original papers. Use is limited to the microfilm copy.