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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, 1891-1978  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, 1898-1979  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.

Missing Title

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
Art critics -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
Curators -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
Art consultants -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
Topic:
Art, Abstract -- United States  Search this
Art, American  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
Function:
Art festivals
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
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw987a0763e-de6c-4f9e-b143-4875b3a2244a
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-kuhkath
Online Media:

Interviews of artists by Brian O'Doherty

Creator:
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston  Search this
Interviewer:
O'Doherty, Brian  Search this
Names:
Albers, Josef  Search this
Baskin, Leonard, 1922-2000  Search this
Chagall, Marc, 1887-1985  Search this
Gropius, Walter, 1883-1969  Search this
Hopper, Edward, 1882-1967  Search this
Levine, Jack, 1915-2010  Search this
Lipchitz, Jacques, 1891-1973  Search this
Lippold, Richard, 1915-2002  Search this
Shahn, Ben, 1898-1969  Search this
Extent:
9 Sound tapes ((Partially transcribed on 126 p.), 7 in.)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Sound tapes
Date:
[ca. 1962]
Scope and Contents:
Interviews conducted by Brian O'Doherty for the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston's "Invitation to Art" program, aired on channel 2, television station WGBH, Boston, Massachusetts. Interviewees include: Josef Albers, Leonard Baskin, Marc Chagall, Walter Gropius, Edward Hopper, Jack Levine, Jacques Lipchitz, Richard Lippold and Ben Shahn.
Provenance:
Donated 1964 by the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
Restrictions:
All except Chagall interview: Patrons must use transcripts.
Occupation:
Artists -- Interviews  Search this
Topic:
Art, American  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
Identifier:
AAA.musefabi
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw94bcb3c1f-20d2-49bf-9b6b-2ef4f7882161
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-musefabi

Cleve Gray papers, 1933-2005

Creator:
Gray, Cleve, 1918-2004  Search this
Subject:
Richter, Hans  Search this
Marin, John  Search this
Lipchitz, Jacques  Search this
Pollock, Jackson  Search this
Grace, Louise N.  Search this
Gray, Francine du Plessix  Search this
Duchamp, Marcel  Search this
Dillenberger, Jane  Search this
Gabo, Naum  Search this
Ernst, Jimmy  Search this
Davis, Jim  Search this
Calder, Alexander  Search this
Barzun, Jacques  Search this
Weber, Nicholas Fox  Search this
Smith, David  Search this
Villon, Jacques  Search this
Pratt Institute  Search this
Rhode Island School of Design  Search this
Neuberger Museum of Art  Search this
Jacques Seligmann & Co  Search this
Betty Parsons Gallery  Search this
Connecticut. Commission on Arts, Tourism, Culture, History and Film  Search this
Princeton University  Search this
Berry-Hill Galleries  Search this
Type:
Poems
Articles
Photographs
Reviews (documents)
Notes
Illustrations
Notebooks
Sketches
Drafts (documents)
Video recordings
Sound recordings
Interviews
Manuscripts
Paintings
Prints
Watercolors
Drawings
Lectures
Citation:
Cleve Gray papers, 1933-2005. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
Vietnam War, 1961-1975 -- Protest movements -- United States  Search this
Designers  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Women painters  Search this
Women sculptors  Search this
Theme:
Lives of artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)9567
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211768
AAA_collcode_grayclev
Theme:
Lives of artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211768
Online Media:

Rockwell Kent papers, circa 1840-1993, bulk 1935-1961

Creator:
Kent, Rockwell, 1882-1971  Search this
Subject:
Wildenstein, Felix  Search this
Phillips, Duncan  Search this
Hays, Lee  Search this
Untermeyer, Louis  Search this
Zigrosser, Carl  Search this
Robeson, Paul  Search this
DuBois, W.E.B. (William Edward Burghardt)  Search this
Roosevelt, Franklin D. (Franklin Delano)  Search this
Ruggles, Carl  Search this
Stefansson, Vilhjalmur  Search this
Nearing, Helen  Search this
Nearing, Scott  Search this
Pach, Walter  Search this
Rasmussen, Knud  Search this
Reeves, Ruth  Search this
Seeger, Pete  Search this
Daniel, Charles  Search this
Cleland, T. M. (Thomas Maitland)  Search this
Davies, Arthur B. (Arthur Bowen)  Search this
Chamberlain, J. E.  Search this
Boyesen, Bayard  Search this
Chase, William Merritt  Search this
Freuchen, Peter  Search this
Gellert, Hugo  Search this
Gottlieb, Harry  Search this
Hartley, Marsden  Search this
FitzGerald, James  Search this
Keller, Charles  Search this
Miller, Kenneth Hayes  Search this
Henri, Robert  Search this
Jones, Dan Burne  Search this
United American Artists  Search this
United Office and Professional Workers of America  Search this
United Scenic Artists  Search this
National Farmers' Union (U.S.)  Search this
National Maritime Union of America  Search this
American Artists' Congress  Search this
Artists' Union (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Artists League of America  Search this
Citizens' Committee for Government Arts Projects  Search this
Farmers Union of the New York Milk Shed  Search this
Federal Art Project  Search this
Federal Writers' Project  Search this
Macbeth Gallery  Search this
International Workers Order  Search this
Type:
Poems
Sketches
Business records
Photographs
Drawings
Citation:
Rockwell Kent papers, circa 1840-1993, bulk 1935-1961. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
Designers -- New York (State)  Search this
Mural painting and decoration  Search this
Politics and culture  Search this
Authors -- New York  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- United States -- Political aspects  Search this
Dairy farms  Search this
Federal aid to the arts  Search this
Illustrators -- New York (State)  Search this
Illustration of books  Search this
Works of art  Search this
Art and war  Search this
Commercial art  Search this
World War, 1939-1945 -- Art and the war  Search this
Theme:
Lives of artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)9557
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211757
AAA_collcode_kentrock
Theme:
Lives of artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211757
Online Media:

Miscellaneous art exhibition catalog collection

Creator:
Archives of American Art  Search this
Names:
Kuhn, Walt, 1877-1949  Search this
Extent:
4.4 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Exhibition catalogs
Date:
1813-1953
bulk 1915-1925
Summary:
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.
Arrangement:
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.

Missing Title

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
Historical Note:
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.
Related Material:
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).
Provenance:
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.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Topic:
Art, Modern -- 19th century -- Massachusetts -- Exhibitions  Search this
Art, Modern -- 19th century -- New York (State) -- New York -- Exhibitions  Search this
Art, American -- Exhibitions  Search this
Artists -- United States -- Exhibitions  Search this
Modernism (Art)  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- New York (State) -- New York -- Exhibitions  Search this
Function:
Art galleries, Commercial -- Massachusetts
Art galleries, Commercial -- New York (State)
Genre/Form:
Exhibition catalogs
Citation:
Miscellaneous art exhibition catalog collection, 1813-1953, bulk 1915-1925. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.archamea
See more items in:
Miscellaneous art exhibition catalog collection
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw97cda1277-17cc-4295-abe9-729b895e1a28
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-archamea

The coming of modernism to Chicago, 1910-1940

Creator:
Archives of American Art  Search this
Kruty, Paul Samuel  Search this
Morgan, Ann Lee  Search this
Moser, Charlotte, 1947-  Search this
Platt, Susan Noyes, 1945-  Search this
Prince, Sue Ann  Search this
Weininger, Susan  Search this
Weller, Allen S. (Allen Stuart), 1907-1997  Search this
Brettell, Richard R.  Search this
Engelbrecht, Lloyd C.  Search this
Germer, Stefan  Search this
Harris, Neil, 1938-  Search this
Berman, Avis  Search this
Coming of modernism to Chicago (1988 : Chicago, Ill.)  Search this
Collection Creator:
Archives of American Art  Search this
Extent:
6 Items (sound cassettes)
Container:
Item IM100RC.105
Item IM100RC.105
Item IM100RC.105
Item IM100RC.105
Item IM100RC.105
Item IM100RC.105
Type:
Archival materials
Audio [31027000062212]
Audio [31027000062220]
Audio [31027000062238]
Audio [31027000062188]
Audio [31027000062196]
Audio [31027000062204]
Sound recordings
Date:
1988 March
Scope and Contents:
Recordings of a symposium on modernism in Chicago, sponsored by the Archives of American Art. Participants include Neil Harris, Charlotte Moser, Allen Weller, Stefan Germer, Ann Lee Morgan, Susan Platt, Susan Weininger, Paul Kruty, Lloyd Engelbrecht, Avis Berman, Sue Ann Kendall and Richard (Rick) Brettell.
The end of Susan Weininger's talk and the beginning of Paul Kruty's talk are missing due to technical difficulties at the time of recording.
General:
Originally recorded on 6 sound cassettes. Reformatted in 2010 as 10 digital wav files. Duration is 6 hrs., 54 min.
Funding note:
Funding for the digital preservation of this interview was provided by a grant from the Save America's Treasures Program of the National Park Service.
Provenance:
These sound recordings are part of the Archives' Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and others.
Collection Restrictions:
Use requires an appointment.
Occupation:
Art historians  Search this
Topic:
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
Modernism (Art)  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Identifier:
AAA.archiv57, Item AAA
See more items in:
Archives of American Art sound recordings
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9f41c689e-7015-47ae-83a6-f1875aab3982
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-archiv57-ref7

American art exhibition catalog collection [microfilm]

Collector:
Archives of American Art  Search this
Extent:
134 Microfilm reels
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Microfilm reels
Date:
1820-1960
Scope and Contents:
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.
Provenance:
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.
Restrictions:
The Archives of American art does not own the original papers. Use is limited to the microfilm copy.
Topic:
Art, American -- Exhibitions  Search this
Art, Modern -- 19th century -- United States -- Exhibitions  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- United States -- Exhibitions  Search this
Identifier:
AAA.archaaec
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9da8a7363-5b65-436d-a38e-bfe64e47ec7b
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-archaaec

State of the arts videorecordings

Creator:
Lawrence P. Fraiberg Productions  Search this
Names:
Lawrence P. Fraiberg Productions  Search this
Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
New Museum (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
O.K. Harris Gallery (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Whitney Museum of American Art  Search this
Campoli, Cosmo  Search this
Cavanau, Ted  Search this
Derman, Rick  Search this
Fraiberg, Lawrence P.  Search this
Karp, Ivan C., 1926-2012  Search this
Kovich, Robert  Search this
Nolan, Barry  Search this
Paik, Nam June, 1932-2006  Search this
Phillips, Liz  Search this
Rose, Barbara  Search this
Segal, George, 1924-2000  Search this
Solomon, Holly  Search this
Thorne, Joan, 1943-  Search this
Extent:
2.4 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Interviews
Video recordings
Date:
1979
Summary:
The State of the Arts videorecordings measure 2.4 linear feet and consist of 30 videocassettes (U-matic) and three sets of handwritten notes, all created during the production of a pilot episode for a broadcast television documentary series on contemporary art in 1979. Four stories were produced for the pilot: a staged debate on modern art at the Museum of Modern Art; an investigation into the economics of the contemporary art market, a collaboration between video artist Nam June Paik and sound artist Liz Phillips, and an extended interview with sculptor George Segal on the occasion of his 1979 retrospective exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art. Video footage includes raw footage for each segment and edited versions of the economics of art story, the Nam June Paik and Liz Phillips story, and the George Segal story. The reporter and interviewer for the program was Barry Nolan.
Scope and Contents:
The State of the Arts videorecordings measure 2.4 linear feet and consist of 30 videocassettes (U-matic) and three sets of handwritten notes, all created during the production of a pilot episode for a broadcast television documentary series on contemporary art in 1979. Four stories were produced for the pilot: a staged debate on modern art at the Museum of Modern Art; an investigation into the economics of the contemporary art market, a collaboration between video artist Nam June Paik and sound artist Liz Phillips, and an extended interview with sculptor George Segal on the occasion of his 1979 retrospective exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art. Video footage includes raw footage for each segment and edited versions of the economics of art story, the Nam June Paik and Liz Phillips story, and the George Segal story. The reporter and interviewer for the program was Barry Nolan.

Although the program never aired, the video shot for the pilot documents significant artists and gallerists of its time, with profiles of O.K. Harris Works of Art and its founder, Ivan Karp, as well as art dealer Holly Solomon and critic Barbara Rose, Marcia Tucker in the early days of the New Museum, and footage of artists like Nam June Paik, Liz Phillips, and George Segal in their studios, describing their work in detail. The sound and video piece created by Paik and Phillips with the dancer Robert Kovich was commissioned by the State of the Arts producers for the pilot program, and the four hours of video documenting their collaboration and its product may therefore be unique.

Interview subjects for the economics of art story include Ivan Karp, Tom Drysdale, Rick Derman, Cosmo Campoli, Joan Thorne, Holly Solomon, Marcia Tucker, and Barbara Rose. The Marcia Tucker interview takes place at the New School, which was at the time the home of the New Museum. Footage also includes a gallery opening at O.K. Harris Works of Art. Extended interviews with Liz Phillips, Nam June Paik, and George Segal are found in the footage of their respective stories.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as one series.

Missing Title

Series 1: -- State of the Arts -- Production Video, 1979 (2.4 linear feet; boxes 1-3)
Biographical / Historical:
State of the Arts was planned as a broadcast television magazine program on the subject of contemporary art. The pilot was produced in 1979 by Lawrence P. Fraiberg Productions with funding provided jointly by IBM and the National Endowment for the Arts. Fraiberg and Tom Cavanau served as executive co-producers, Rick Derman as field producer, and Barry Nolan as interviewer. The program never aired.

Lawrence P. Fraiberg was a longtime television documentary veteran when the pilot was produced. He graduated from the University of California in 1949 and began his career at television station KPIX in San Francisco. He became vice president and general manager of WNEW-TV in New York in 1965, and was named president of Metromedia Television in 1977. In 1980 he was appointed president of the Television Station Group for Westinghouse Broadcasting. An active member in community and industry organizations, he is a recipient of an honorary degree (1978) from St. John's University, New York, a Peabody Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Broadcasting Industry (1986), and a Trustees Award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (1990). He died in 2011.

Barry Nolan, the interviewer for State of the Arts, went on to a career as a television magazine host and producer, with credits including Evening Magazine, Hard Copy, Extra!, and Nitebeat, and in 2012 produced the documentary No Way Out But One with his wife, Garland Waller.
Provenance:
Donated 1979-1980 by Lawrence P. Fraiberg.
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 access copy requires advance notice. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Rights:
Authorization to quote or reproduce for purposes of publication requires written permission from Ted Cavanu, Rick Derman and Barry Nolan. Contact Reference Services for more information.
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Topic:
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- Study and teaching  Search this
Performance art  Search this
Artists' studios  Search this
Video art  Search this
Sound sculpture -- United States  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Function:
Production companies
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Video recordings
Citation:
State of the Arts Videorecordings, 1979. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.frailawr
See more items in:
State of the arts videorecordings
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw92f7d4bec-4caf-4705-8058-87f72987ab5a
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-frailawr

Marchal Landgren Papers

Creator:
Landgren, Marchal E.  Search this
Names:
American Abstract Artists  Search this
Art Students League (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Artists Equity Association  Search this
Contemporary Arts (Gallery)  Search this
Joseph Mitchell Gallery  Search this
Municipal Art Committee (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Old Print Shop (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
University of Maryland at College Park  Search this
Washington, D.C.. Public Library  Search this
Abbott, Berenice, 1898-1991  Search this
Albers, Josef  Search this
Avery, Milton, 1885-1965  Search this
Beaton, Cecil Walter Hardy, Sir, 1904-  Search this
Constant, George  Search this
Cox, George Collins, 1851-1902  Search this
De Laittre, Eleanor, 1911-1998  Search this
Fitch, Clyde, 1865-1909  Search this
Force, Juliana, 1876-1948  Search this
Fruhauf, Aline, 1909-1978  Search this
Gallatin, A. E. (Albert Eugene), 1881-1952  Search this
Geist, Sidney  Search this
Gershwin, George, 1898-1937  Search this
Glackens, Ira, 1907-1990  Search this
Greene, Balcomb, 1904-1990  Search this
Harari, Hananiah, 1912-2000  Search this
Higgins, Eugene, 1874-1958  Search this
Holtzman, Harry  Search this
Hunt, William Morris, 1824-1879  Search this
Janauschek, Francesca Romana Magdalena, 1830-1904  Search this
Kane, John, 1860-1934  Search this
Kipling, Rudyard, 1865-1936  Search this
Laufman, Sidney, 1891-  Search this
Logasa, Charles, 1883-1936  Search this
Mitchell, Donald Grant, 1822-1908  Search this
Newman, Robert Loftin, 1827-1912  Search this
Orr, Elliot, 1904-1997  Search this
Portinari, Cândido, 1903-1962  Search this
Ryder, Albert Pinkham, 1847-1917  Search this
Saint-Gaudens, Augustus, 1848-1907  Search this
Sprinchorn, Carl, 1887-1971  Search this
Extent:
15.3 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Christmas cards
Photographs
Scrapbooks
Sketches
Drawings
Date:
1881-circa 1982
bulk 1930-1975
Summary:
The papers of Washington, D.C. art historian, librarian, author, educator, and art consultant Marchal Landgren measure 15.3 linear feet and date from 1881 to circa 1982, with the bulk of the material dating from 1930 to 1975. Included are biographical materials, correspondence, writings and notes, professional and organization files, research projects' files, scattered personal business records, printed materials, two clippings scrapbooks, photographical materials, and scattered artwork.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of Washington, D.C. art historian, librarian, author, educator, and art consultant Marchal Landgren measure 15.3 linear feet and date from 1881 to circa 1982, with the bulk of the material dating from 1930 to 1975. Included are biographical materials, correspondence, writings and notes, professional and organization files, research projects' files, scattered personal business records, printed materials, two clippings scrapbooks, photographical materials, and scattered artwork.

Biographical material includes address cards, an appointment book, curriculum vitaes, genealogical materials, and military records. Correspondence is with artists, clients, colleagues, museums, and universities, and is predominantly professional in nature. Correspondents include Albert E. Gallatin, George Gershwin, Ira Glackens, Sidney Laufman, Elliot Orr, Candido Portinari, and Carl Sprinchorn, among others.

Writings include miscellaneous published and unpublished writings and drafts by Marchal Landgren primarily those not associated with his major research projects. These include various articles written for magazines and journals, manuscript drafts, research notes, and notebooks. There is also a file of writings by others that includes the John Mitchell Gallery Notes.

Professional and organizational files document Landgren's positions and work for educational institutions and arts organizations, including the American Abstract Artists Group, Art Students League of New York, Association of Artists Equity of Washington D. C., Contemporary Arts, D. C. Public Library, Library Journal, New York City Municipal Art Committee, Old Print Shop, Inc., and the University of Maryland, among others. These files also contain correspondence, perhaps the most notable found in the file on the American Abstract Artists Group which includes letters from Josef Albers, Eleanor de Laittre, Sidney Geist, Balcomb Greene, Hananiah Harari, and Harry Holtzman.

Well over one-half of the collection consists of files for Landgren's ongoing research projects on numerous artists and photographers, Latin American art, as well as his bibliographic reference projects. The bulk of the files cover his research, writing, and curatorial work on Robert Loftin Newman. Files are also found for Berenice Abbott, Milton Avery, George Constant, George Collins Cox, Aline Fruhauf, Eugene Higgins, William Morris Hunt, John Kane, Charles Logasa, Elliot Orr, and Albert Pinkham Ryder, among many others.

Personal business records include personal and general expense documentation and scattered exhibition price lists. Printed materials include clippings, exhibition catalogs, and miscellaneous published articles and essays. There are two scrapbooks of clippings.

There are photographs, slides, and negatives of images of Landgren, other artists and notable figures in the art world, and of artwork. Of note is a portrait photograph of Juliana Force by Cecil Beaton, one photograph by Berenice Abbott, "Barclay Street Ferry", and 14 taken by George C. Cox of Rudyard Kipling, Clyde Fitch, Augustus Saint-Gaudens, Madame Fanny Janauschek, Donald G. Mitchell, and others.

The papers also include scattered artwork, including holiday cards illustrated by artists, and sketches and drawings by other artists.
Arrangement:
This collection is arranged as 10 series.

Missing Title

Series 1: Biographical Materials, circa 1890-circa 1981 (0.2 linear feet; Box 1)

Series 2: Correspondence, circa 1930-circa 1982 (0.6 linear feet; Box 1)

Series 3: Writings and Notes, circa 1932-circa 1982 (1.2 linear feet; Boxes 1-3)

Series 4: Professional and Organizational Files, circa 1910-circa 1977 (3.4 linear feet; Boxes 3-6)

Series 5: Research Projects' Files, 1881-circa 1982 (6.9 linear feet; Boxes 6-13, 15)

Series 6: Personal Business Records, circa 1934-circa 1982 (0.4 linear feet; Box 13)

Series 7: Printed Material, circa 1927-circa 1981 (1.0 linear feet; Boxes 13-14)

Series 8: Scrapbooks, circa 1931-circa 1979 (0.2 linear feet; Boxes 14-15)

Series 9: Photographic Materials, circa 1930s-circa 1978 (0.2 linear feet; Boxes 14-15)

Series 10: Artwork, circa 1930s-circa 1940s (0.2 linear feet; Boxes 14-15)
Biographical / Historical:
Marchal E. Landgren (1907-1983) was an art historian, librarian, educator, author, and art consultant, active in New York and Washington, D. C.

As associate director and board member of Contemporary Arts, Inc. in New York, Landgren established a program for providing artists with their first solo exhibition in New York, including those of John Kane and Mark Tobey. In 1932, he directed the exhibition schedule at the New School for Social Research; and in 1935, Landgren served as the director of art activities for the New York City Municipal Art Committee where he facilitated many exhibitions over the course of five years, including Recent Paintings by Boris Aronson at Babcock Galleries in 1938.

Working as a freelance art consultant, researcher, and author, Landgren organized numerous exhibitions between 1932 and 1950 of the work of Milton Avery, George C. Cox, Elliot Orr, Robert Loftin Newman, and Albert Pinkham Ryder. He also edited several arts publications, including the Old Print Shop Portfolio, John Mitchell Gallery Notes, and arts manuscripts for Oxford University Press.

In 1939, Landgren was selected by the New York World's Fair Commision to prepare historical notes on Latin American art for the exhibition catalogs of the Latin American art exhibition. After the Fair, he continued his research on this topic and wrote several articles, as well as lecturing on Latin American painting at the Art Students League of New York, the Newark Art Club, and the National Education Association at the Boston Museum.

After serving in the U. S. Army Air Force during World War II, Landgren moved to Washington, D. C. in 1950 and began work as the arts division readers' advisor for the D. C. Public Library. For seventeen years, he built up the library's general collection of art books and created extensive files of art exhibition catalogs.

In 1967, he took a position as a bibliographic consultant for the fine arts department at the University of Maryland. He became director of the University's art gallery and of the art department museum training program. During his tenure at the University of Maryland, Landgren conducted graduate seminars in art history, edited and published exhibition catalogs, and organized exhibitions, including The Late Landscapes of William Morris Hunt in 1976.

Landgren was a visiting scholar at the Smithsonian Institution's National Collection of Fine Arts and curated an exhibition of paintings by Robert Loftin Newman held there from 1973 to 1974 and at the Tennessee Fine Arts Center in 1974.

Marchal Landgren authored two books: Years of Art: The Story of the Art Students League of New York (Robert M. McBride and Company, 1940), and Robert Loftin Newman (Smithsonian Institution Press, 1974). He was a regular reviewer of art books for the Library Journal from 1958 to 1972, and contributed reviews to Trend, Magazine of Art, and other journals. He was awarded a research grant by the American Council of Learned Societies in 1963 for his study of George C. Cox and did a great deal of research in American art and American art institutions for an unfinished manuscript. He also worked on a bibliography of art literature which he never completed.
Provenance:
The Marchal Landgren papers were donated by Landgren in 1974, and by the Landgren estate via David Huddle in 1983.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Occupation:
Librarians -- Washington (D.C.)  Search this
Educators -- Washington (D.C.)  Search this
Authors -- Washington (D.C.)  Search this
Art historians -- Washington (D.C.)  Search this
Art consultants -- Washington (D.C.)  Search this
Topic:
Art, American  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
Genre/Form:
Christmas cards
Photographs
Scrapbooks
Sketches
Drawings
Citation:
Marchal Landgren papers, 1881-circa 1982, bulk 1930-1975. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.landmarc
See more items in:
Marchal Landgren Papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw946a644a0-83cc-46a7-8c56-e9c63db0e1b4
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-landmarc

Whitney Museum of American Art artists' files and records

Creator:
Whitney Museum of American Art  Search this
Names:
Whitney Studio Club  Search this
Whitney Studio Galleries  Search this
Baziotes, William, 1912-1963  Search this
Bellows, George, 1882-1925  Search this
Benton, Thomas Hart, 1889-1975  Search this
Bloom, Hyman, 1913-  Search this
Burchfield, Charles Ephraim, 1893-1967  Search this
Burlin, Paul, 1886-1969  Search this
Cadmus, Paul, 1904-1999  Search this
Cassatt, Mary, 1844-1926  Search this
Curry, John Steuart, 1897-1946  Search this
Davis, Stuart, 1892-1964  Search this
De Creeft, José, 1884-1982  Search this
Dickinson, Edwin Walter, 1891-1978  Search this
Eilshemius, Louis M. (Louis Michel), 1864-1941  Search this
Evergood, Philip, 1901-1973  Search this
Feininger, Lyonel, 1871-1956  Search this
Gatch, Lee, 1902-1968  Search this
Glackens, William J., 1870-1938  Search this
Gorky, Arshile, 1904-1948  Search this
Graves, Morris, 1910-  Search this
Gross, Chaim, 1904-1991  Search this
Grosz, George, 1893-1959  Search this
Harnett, William Michael, 1848-1892  Search this
Hartley, Marsden, 1877-1943  Search this
Henri, Robert, 1865-1929  Search this
Hofmann, Hans, 1880-1966  Search this
Hopper, Edward, 1882-1967  Search this
Inness, George, 1825-1894  Search this
Karfiol, Bernard, 1886-1952  Search this
Kuhn, Walt, 1877-1949  Search this
Kuniyoshi, Yasuo, 1889-1953  Search this
Lachaise, Gaston, 1882-1935  Search this
Lawson, Ernest, 1873-1939  Search this
MacIver, Loren, 1909-1998  Search this
Marin, John, 1870-1953  Search this
Marsh, Reginald, 1898-1954  Search this
Motherwell, Robert  Search this
Mount, William Sidney, 1807-1868  Search this
Nevelson, Louise, 1899-1988  Search this
O'Keeffe, Georgia, 1887-1986  Search this
Pereira, I. Rice (Irene Rice), 1902-1971  Search this
Pollock, Jackson, 1912-1956  Search this
Prendergast, Maurice Brazil, 1858-1924  Search this
Pène Du Bois, Guy, 1884-1958  Search this
Reder, Bernard, 1897-1963  Search this
Rimmer, William, 1816-1879  Search this
Rivers, Larry, 1925-2002  Search this
Rothko, Mark, 1903-1970  Search this
Ryder, Albert Pinkham, 1847-1917  Search this
Schnakenberg, H. E. (Henry Ernest), 1892-1970  Search this
Sheeler, Charles, 1883-1965  Search this
Sloan, John, 1871-1951  Search this
Smith, David, 1906-1965  Search this
Stella, Joseph, 1877-1946  Search this
Tobey, Mark  Search this
Twachtman, John Henry, 1853-1902  Search this
Tworkov, Jack  Search this
Walkowitz, Abraham, 1880-1965  Search this
Weber, Max, 1881-1961  Search this
Wyant, A. H. (Alexander Helwig), 1836-1892  Search this
Young, Mahonri Mackintosh, 1877-1957  Search this
Zorach, William, 1887-1966  Search this
Extent:
78 Microfilm reels
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Microfilm reels
Date:
1914-1966
Scope and Contents:
REELS N591-N597: Photographs of the Museum, Juliana Force, Herman Moore; scrapbooks on the Whitney Studio Club, Whitney Studio Galleries and the Museum, 1927-1965.
REELS N599-N604: Notebooks of Edwin W. Dickinson; photographs and provenance information for works by Philip Evergood; a catalog of information and some photographs of Chinese ink drawings and other works by Reginald Marsh; and photographs and information on Bernard Reder, Jack Tworkov, Max Weber (portions also microfilmed on reel NY59-8 (fr. 497-658), reel NY59-9 (fr. 1-51), and William Zorach.
REELS N604-N609: Exhibition catalogs, 1946-1966, for artists and groups shows at the Museum, including Robert Feke, William Rimmer, Ralph Blakelock, Albert Maurer, Albert Pinkham Ryder, Yasuo Kuniyoshi, Thomas Cole, Max Weber, Arshile Gorky, Mark Tobey, John Sloan, Loren MacIver, I. Rice Pereira, George Grosz, Reginald Marsh, Charles Burchfield, Morris Graves, Theodore Roszak, John Marin, Hans Hofmann, Bradley Tomlin, Stuart Davis, Milton Avery, Lee Gatch, Jose De Creeft, Maurice Prendergast, Edward Hopper, Hyman Bloom, Robert E. Jones, Balcomb Greene, Karl Zerbe, Arthur G. Dove, William Zorach, Philip Evergood, Bernard Reder, Herbert Feber, Oliver O'Connor Barrett,Arthur B. Davies, Jose De Rivera, Paul Burlin, Joseph Stella, Jack Tworkov, Ivan Albright, Stuart Davis, Edwin Dickinson, John Quidor, and Niles Spencer.
REELS N646-N694: Artists' files on: Oliver O'Connor Barrett,William Baziotes, George Bellows, Thomas Hart Benton, Peter Blume, James Brooks, Patrick Henry Bruce, Charles Burchfield, Paul Burlin, David Burliuk, Paul Cadmus, Mary Cassatt, Thomas Cole, Glenn Coleman, Jon Corbino, John Steuart Curry, Jo Davidson, Arthur B. Davies, Jose DeCreeft, Charles Demuth, Jose De Rivera, Arthur Dove, Guy Pène du Bois, Stuart Davis, Frank Duveneck, Ralph Earl, Eastman Johnson, The Eight, Philip Evergood, Robert Feke, Lyonel Feininger, Ernest Fiene, George Fuller, Lee Gatch, William Glackens, Arshile Gorky, Balcomb Greene, Chaim Gross, George Grosz, William Harnett, Marsden Hartley, Childe Hassam, John Heliker, Robert Henri, Hans Hofmann, George Inness, Leon Kelly, Franz Kline, Karl Knaths, Leon Kroll, Walt Kuhn, Yasuo Kuniyoshi, Gaston Lachaise, Robert Laurent, Ernest Lawson, Jack Levine, Seymour Lipton, George B. Luks,
Stanton Macdonald-Wright, Loren MacIver, John Marin, Reginald Marsh, Alfred Maurer, K. H. Miller, Robert Motherwell, William Mount, Jerome Myers, Louise Nevelson, Georgia O'Keeffe (portions also microfilmed on reels NY59-13 (fr. 98-115, 406-424, 586-685), reel NY59-14 (entire), and reel NY59-15 (fr. 1-140, 145-153), I. Rice Pereira, Bernard Perlin, Joseph Pollett, Jackson Pollock, Reginald Pollack, Henry V. Poor, Richard Pousette-Dart, Maurice Prendergast, Abraham Rattner, Bernard Reder, Ad Reinhardt, William Rimmer, Larry Rivers, Hugo Robus, Theodore Roszak, Mark Rothko, Concetta Scarvaglione, Henry Schnakenberg, Ben Shahn, John Sloan, David Smith, Eugene Speicher, Theodoros Stamos, Joseph Stella, Maurice Sterne, Mark Tobey, Bradley Tomlin,Trajan, Allen Tucker, John Twachtman, Jack Tworkov, Abraham Walkowitz (also on reel NY/59-15) , Max Weber, James M. Whistler, Gertrude Whitney, Grant Wood, Alexander Wyant, Mahonri Young, and William Zorach.
REELS NWH 1-NWH 7: Artist files on Charles Sheeler, Bernard Karfiol, Louis Eilshemius; scatterred records of the Whitney Studio Club and Museum, 1914-1945, including minutes, Oct. 15, 1930, and Whitney Studio ledgers, 1928-1931; catalogs of one-man shows, 1932-1945; catalogs of annual painting exhibitions, 1932-1940, sculpture, watercolor and drawing exhibitions, 1933-1945, and group exhibitions, 1932-1945; and clippings, Oct. 1935-1936.
REELS NY59/8 (fr. 256-end)-NY59/10: Files on Max Weber, including biographical material, lists of work, and miscellany. Also found (NY59/8 frames 354-383) are ca.20 letters from Weber to Abraham Walkowitz, 1907-1924.
Biographical / Historical:
Whitney Museum of American Art is an American art museum in New York, New York. Founded by Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney and formally opened in 1931. Previous to its opening as a museum it was known as the Whitney Studio Club (1914-28) and Whitney Studio Galleries (1928-30).
Provenance:
The Weber files on reels NY59/8-10 were lent for microfilming 1959 by the Whitney Museum of American Art; the remainder was lent 1964-1967; additional material from the Museum was lent at the same time, and subsequently donated, including the papers of Lloyd Goodrich, Juliana Force, Thomas B. Clarke, the American Art Research Council, and Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney; these have each been cataloged separately. Portions of Weber, and O'Keeffe material that was microfilmed in 1959 were refilmed in 1967.
Restrictions:
The Archives of American art does not own the original papers. Use is limited to the microfilm copy.
Topic:
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
Artists -- Exhibitions -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Art, American  Search this
Function:
Art museums -- New York (State)
Identifier:
AAA.whitmuse
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw990da7b91-a3b8-4ace-b8ba-b5c08cfe3284
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-whitmuse

Keith Warner papers

Creator:
Warner, Keith, 1895-1959  Search this
Names:
"291" (Gallery)  Search this
American Place (Gallery)  Search this
Whitney Museum of American Art  Search this
Calder, Alexander, 1898-1976  Search this
Dorcely, Roland  Search this
Macdonald-Wright, Stanton, 1890-1973  Search this
Marin, John, 1870-1953  Search this
Mondrian, Piet, 1872-1944  Search this
O'Keeffe, Georgia, 1887-1986  Search this
Rosenburg, Paul  Search this
Russell, Morgan, 1886-1953  Search this
Stieglitz, Alfred, 1864-1946  Search this
Weber, Max, 1881-1961  Search this
Extent:
0.7 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Illustrated letters
Sketches
Date:
1935-1975
Summary:
The papers of American art collector Keith Warner measure 0.7 linear feet and date from 1935 to 1975. Correspondence, collecting files, and artwork detail Warner's role as a collector of art in the mid-twentieth century. Present in the collection are materials related to Alexander Calder, Roland Dorcely, Stanton MacDonald-Wright, Piet Mondrian, Alfred Stieglitz, and Max Weber.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of American art collector Keith Warner measure 0.7 linear feet and date from 1935 to 1975. Correspondence, collecting files, and artwork detail Warner's role as a collector of art in the mid-twentieth century. Present in the collection are materials related to Alexander Calder, Roland Dorcely, Stanton MacDonald-Wright, Piet Mondrian, Alfred Stieglitz, and Max Weber.

Warner's relationships with artists are documented in extensive letters which make up the bulk of the collection. Subjects range from exhibitions, the art market, artists' methods and works, art criticism, and collecting to personal subjects. Letters from Roland Dorcely and Alexander Calder include illustrated letters and postcards. Letters from Calder discuss a mix of business and personal matters, including a discussion of the design of jewelry commissioned for Warner's wife, Edna. Letters from Dorcely document Warner's cultivation, criticism, and collection of Dorcely's work, as well as the hardships of Haitian artists and Dorcely's views on art. The letters are in French with some English translations.

Correspondence with Alfred Stieglitz documents his common endeavor with Warner in collecting the paintings of John Marin, and Stieglitz's gallery, An American Place. Letters associated with An American Place continue after Stieglitz's death in 1946. Found with Alfred Stieglitz's letters are two letters from Georgia O'Keeffe. Max Weber letters include comments on his painting and sculpting, his retrospective show at the Whitney, the art press, national politics, and also refer to Stieglitz and Marin. An extensive group of correspondence with Stanton MacDonald-Wright is mostly undated; MacDonald-Wright writes freely about Stieglitz, the "291" group of artists, and his partner in Synchromism, Morgan Russell. Also included are letters from Piet Mondrian related to collecting, as well as letters from unidentified correspondents.

Warner's collecting files consist of diverse materials concerning his research, writing, and relationships with artists whose paintings he collected, particularly Roland Dorcely and Stanton MacDonald-Wright. Included are biographical sketches; writings about and by the artists, including manuscripts and published materials; newspaper and magazine clippings; exhibition announcements and catalogs; and photographs of works of art. Writings by Roland Dorcely, on the subject of his artistic process and perspective, include handwritten essays in French as well as typed English translations. Published articles from Script magazine (1945-1946) by Stanton MacDonald-Wright document his career as an art critic. Writings on Alexander Calder and Paul Rosenburg, taken from Warner's journal on Calder, and on the early relationship of Alfred Stieglitz and Georgia O'Keeffe, documented on a visit with Stieglitz on May 3, 1944, are also present.

Artwork consists of work by Alexander Calder and Roland Dorcely. Calder's work includes sketches proposing mobiles with notations as to material, scale, and cost. Dorcely's work includes sketches in graphite and ink of abstract figures and objects.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 3 series.

Missing Title

Series 1: Correspondence, 1940-1963 (0.4 linear feet; Box 1-2)

Series 2: Collecting Files, circa 1940-1975 (12 folders; Box 2, OV 3)

Series 3: Artwork, circa 1945-circa 1965 (2 folders; Box 2)
Biographical / Historical:
Keith Warner (1895-1959) was an American art collector. Warner was born and lived in Gloversville, New York, and maintained a manufacturing business that took him to New York City intermittently. Warner began collecting Chinese porcelains after World War I, and a few years later his interest shifted to American abstract painting. Warner retired from business in 1944. His collection was sold gradually after his death, mostly to private collectors, though some works are in museums in the United States and Japan.
Provenance:
The Keith Warner papers were donated in 1992 by Edna K. Allen, wife of Keith Warner.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Topic:
Art -- Collectors and collecting -- New York (State)  Search this
Artists -- United States  Search this
Art -- Haiti  Search this
Art, Abstract -- Collectors and collecting  Search this
Art criticism  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- Collectors and collecting  Search this
Synchromism (Art)  Search this
Art, American  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Illustrated letters
Sketches
Citation:
Keith Warner papers, 1935-1975. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.warnkeit
See more items in:
Keith Warner papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw97cf79e0a-b1cc-4c06-bf03-80608f90eb97
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-warnkeit
Online Media:

Leo Castelli Gallery records, circa 1880-2000, bulk 1957-1999

Creator:
Leo Castelli Gallery  Search this
Subject:
Nauman, Bruce  Search this
Namuth, Hans  Search this
Johns, Jasper  Search this
Power, Alan  Search this
Parker, Raymond  Search this
Panza, Giuseppe  Search this
Paik, Nam June  Search this
Landsman, Stanley  Search this
Koons, Jeff  Search this
Klapheck, Konrad  Search this
Kiesler, Frederick  Search this
Morris, Robert  Search this
Marisol  Search this
Gorgoni, Gianfranco  Search this
Heller, Ben  Search this
Flavin, Dan  Search this
Judd, Donald  Search this
Daphnis, Nassos  Search this
Epstein, Ethel Steuer  Search this
Darboven, Hanne  Search this
Barry, Robert  Search this
Artschwager, Richard  Search this
Castelli, Leo  Search this
Bloom, Barbara  Search this
Chryssa  Search this
Christo  Search this
Lichtenstein, Roy  Search this
Tworkov, Jack  Search this
Warhol, Andy  Search this
Weiner, Lawrence  Search this
Stella, Frank  Search this
Tremaine, Burton  Search this
Tremaine, Emily Hall  Search this
Twombly, Cy  Search this
Rowan, Carolyn  Search this
Ruscha, Edward  Search this
Rowan, Robert  Search this
Powers, Kimiko  Search this
Powers, John  Search this
Rosenquist, James  Search this
Rauschenberg, Robert  Search this
Starn, Doug  Search this
Starn, Mike  Search this
Scull, Ethel  Search this
Scarpitta, Salvatore  Search this
Serra, Richard  Search this
Scull, Robert C.  Search this
Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Multiples, Inc.  Search this
Ferus Gallery (Los Angeles, Calif.)  Search this
Ileana Sonnabend (Gallery)  Search this
Jewish Museum (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Castelli-Sonnabend Tapes and Films, Inc.  Search this
Dwan Gallery (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Dwan Gallery (Los Angeles, Calif.)  Search this
Castelli Graphics (Firm)  Search this
Whitney Museum of American Art  Search this
Sidney Janis Gallery  Search this
Amsterdam (Netherlands). Stedelijk Museum  Search this
Type:
Interviews
Video recordings
Sketches
Transcripts
Sound recordings
Notes
Visitors' books
Photographs
Notebooks
Awards
Citation:
Leo Castelli Gallery records, circa 1880-2000, bulk 1957-1999. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Topic:
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- History -- New York (State)New York  Search this
Painting, Modern -- 20th century -- History -- New York (State)New York  Search this
Theme:
Art Gallery Records  Search this
Art Market  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)7351
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)209504
AAA_collcode_leocast
Theme:
Art Gallery Records
Art Market
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_209504
Online Media:

Cleve Gray papers

Creator:
Gray, Cleve  Search this
Names:
Berry-Hill Galleries  Search this
Betty Parsons Gallery  Search this
Connecticut. Commission on Arts, Tourism, Culture, History and Film  Search this
Jacques Seligmann & Co  Search this
Neuberger Museum of Art  Search this
Pratt Institute  Search this
Princeton University  Search this
Rhode Island School of Design  Search this
Barzun, Jacques, 1907-  Search this
Calder, Alexander, 1898-1976  Search this
Davis, Jim, 1901-1974  Search this
Dillenberger, Jane  Search this
Duchamp, Marcel, 1887-1968  Search this
Ernst, Jimmy, 1920-1984  Search this
Gabo, Naum, 1890-1977  Search this
Grace, Louise N.  Search this
Gray, Francine du Plessix  Search this
Lipchitz, Jacques, 1891-1973  Search this
Marin, John, 1870-1953  Search this
Pollock, Jackson, 1912-1956  Search this
Richter, Hans, 1888-1976  Search this
Smith, David, 1906-1965  Search this
Villon, Jacques, 1875-1963  Search this
Weber, Nicholas Fox, 1947-  Search this
Extent:
9.2 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Poems
Articles
Photographs
Reviews (documents)
Notes
Illustrations
Notebooks
Sketches
Drafts (documents)
Video recordings
Sound recordings
Interviews
Manuscripts
Paintings
Prints
Watercolors
Drawings
Lectures
Date:
1933-2005
Summary:
The Cleve Gray papers, 1933-2005, measure 9.2 linear feet. Papers include biographical material, alphabetical files, writings, artwork, audio/visual records, artifacts, printed material, and photographs. Extensive alphabetical files contain personal and professional correspondence as well as subject files relating to projects and interests. Especially well-documented are: Gray's involvement with the Vietnam protest movement; and Threnody, his best-known work composed of fourteen large panels lamenting the dead of both sides sides in Vietnam, commissioned by the Neuberger Museum of Art.
Scope and Content Note:
The Cleve Gray papers, 1933-2005, measure 9.2 linear feet. Papers include biographical material, alphabetical files, writings, artwork, audio/visual records, artifacts, printed material, and photographs. Extensive alphabetical files contain personal and professional correspondence as well as subject files relating to projects and interests. Especially well-documented are: Gray's involvement with the Vietnam movement; and Threnody, his best-known work composed of fourteen large panels lamenting the dead of both sides sides in Vietnam, commissioned by the Neuberger Museum of Art.

Among the biographical material are award and membership certificates, biographical notes, and personal documentation.

The alphabetical files contain Cleve Gray's personal and professional correspondence, as well as subject files relating to projects and interests. Correspondence is with friends and family, colleagues, publishers, museum curators and directors, art dealers, collectors, and fans. Among the correspondents of note are: Jacques Barzun, James E. Davis, Naum Gabo, Louise N. Grace, Hans and Fridel Richter, and Jacques and Gaby Villon. Other substantial correspondence includes: Berry-Hill Galleries, Betty Parsons Gallery, Connecticut Commission on the Arts, Jacques Seligmann and Co., Neuberger Museum of Art, Pratt Institute, Princeton University, and Rhode Island School of Design. Subject files mostly consist of correspondence, but include printed material and some photographs. Among the subject files are: Art Collection of Cleve and Francine Gray, Artist-Dealer Consignments and Visual Artists' Rights Act of 1989, Artists' Tax Equity Act of 1979, Promised Gifts to Museums, Threnody, Vestments, and Vietnam Protest. Of particular interest are files relating to the Estate of Hans Richter (Cleve Gray, executor), and Gray's research correspondence and illustrations for his Cosmopolitan article "Women-Leaders of Modern Art."

Writings are manuscripts and drafts, research materials, notes, and miscellaneous writings by Cleve Gray and other authors. Those by Gray include articles and catalog introductions on a wide range of art-related topics, as well as book and exhibition reviews. Also found are a book proposal, texts and notes for lectures and talks, miscellaneous notes, poems, political statements, and student papers. Of particular interest are autobiographical notes in the form of a chronology that his biographer, Nicholas Fox Weber, cited as an "autochronology."

Among the writings by other authors are pieces about Cleve Gray including Nicholas Fox Weber's manuscript Cleve Gray. A significant amount of material relates to three books edited by Gray: David Smith by David Smith: Sculpture and Writings, Hans Richter, and John Marin. Research material survives for an unpublished volume, Naum Gabo. Also included are notes relating to his translation of A l'Infinitif by Marcel Duchamp. Jane Daggett Dillenberger is represented by a lecture, "The Resurrection in Art." The remaining items by other authors are unsigned; of particular interest is a small notebook of reminiscences and notes about Jackson Pollock.

Artwork by Cleve Gray consists mostly drawings and sketches, and a small number of paintings, prints, and watercolors. Works by other artists consist are an unsigned mobile of paper cut-outs, possibly by Alexander Calder, and a pencil drawing signed Dick (probably Richard Avedon).

Audio recordings are a radio broadcast featuring Cleve Gray, several lectures by Gray on John Marin, and a lecture titled "Meaning in the Visual Arts." Other recordings are of Hans Richter and an interview with Jimmy Ernst conducted by Francine du Plessix Gray. Also found is a videocassette of "Glenville School Students at SUNY (Lincoln Center Activity)."

Artifacts are a Chinese scroll representative of those that hung in Cleve Gray's studio, two of his paintbrushes, Aberdeen-Angus Breeders' Association blue ribbon, and Neuberger Museum of Art Lifetime Achievement Award.

The vast majority of printed material - articles, clippings, exhibition catalogs and announcements, reproductions of art work, etc. - are about or by Cleve Gray. Miscellaneous items and publications mentioning Gray consist of annual reports, brochures, calendars, newsletters, programs, etc. Clippings about Vietnam and Vietnam protest memorabilia reflect his passionate involvement in the anti-war movement; a small number of these items mention Gray or were written by him.

Photographs are of artwork, events, people, places, and miscellaneous subjects. Most of the art work appearing in the photographs is by Cleve Gray and includes images of destroyed paintings. Also found is an original print of Photo Abstraction by Gray, circa 1934. Of particular note are photographs of Threnody, among them preparatory drawings and views of the work in progress. Photographs of artwork by other artists include Louise N. Grace, Jacques Lipchitz, John Marin, Hans Richter, and Jacques Villon.

Photographs of people are mainly portraits of Gray, and views of him with his wife and sons. Other individuals appearing in photographs are Hans Richter and some of Richter's descendants. Pictures of places consist of Gray's studio.

Events are an unidentified exhibition opening. Miscellaneous subjects are mostly exhibition installations. Illustrations consist of photographs published in David Smith by David Smith: Sculpture and Writings. Also found are small number of negatives and color transparencies.
Arrangement:
The collection is organized into 8 series:

Missing Title

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1943-circa 2001 (Box 1; 0.1 linear ft.)

Series 2: Alphabetical Files, 1936-2005 (Boxes 1-5, 9; 4.3 linear ft.)

Series 3: Writings, 1935-2000 (Boxes 5-6; 0.85 linear ft.)

Series 4: Artwork, circa 1933-1987 (Boxes 6, 9, OV 12; 0.45 linear ft.)

Series 5: Audio/Visual Records, 1971-1989 (Box 6; 0.25 linear ft.)

Series 6: Artifacts, 1957-1999 (Box 6, RD 11; 0.45 linear ft.)

Series 7: Printed Material, 1933-2005 (Boxes 7-8; 1.25 linear ft.)

Series 8: Photographs, circa 1934-2002 (Boxes 8-10; 1.15 linear ft.)
Biographical Note:
Abstract Expressionist painter, sculptor, and writer Cleve Gray (1918-2004) lived and worked in Connecticut where he was politically active in the Vietnam protest movement and other liberal causes.

Born Cleve Ginsberg in New York City (the family changed its name to Gray in 1936), he attended the Ethical Culture School and at a young age developed a fascination with color and paint. At the urging of friends, Cleve's parents allowed him to accompany a school friend for lessons with George Bellows' student Antonia Nell. She encouraged and inspired the young artist, and a still life he painted in her class was shown at the National Academy of Design's 1932 annual exhibition. Miss Nell also introduced him to Louise N. Grace, an artist who became a good friend and had a lasting influence on him. While a student at Phillips Academy, Cleve studied painting with Bartlett Hayes and aspired to paint in France. Upon his graduation in 1936, he was awarded the Samuel F. B. Morse Prize for most promising art student.

Gray's mother was always supportive of his career choice. His businessman father, who didn't understand his son's desire to be an artist, insisted on a college education. Cleve chose Princeton, where he majored in art and archaeology, and studied painting with James E. Davis. His senior thesis was on Chinese landscape painting; both Eastern philosophy and art were long-term influences on Gray's work and outlook. He graduated summa cum laude in 1940, and then spent several months painting while living at the farm of a family friend in Mendham, New Jersey.

When a doctor suggeted that a dry climate might relieve sinus and asthma problems, Gray moved to Tucson, Arizona. Once settled in the desert, he contacted Louise N. Grace, whom he had met as a young teenager through his art instructor. Miss Grace, an artist and daughter of the founder of W. R. Grace and Co., was a highly cultured and independent woman older than his parents. The summer before Gray entered Phillips Academy, she had hired him to brush ground color onto canvases for murals she was painting for "Eleven Arches," her home in Tuscon then under construction. Miss Grace invited Gray to visit "Eleven Arches" to see the completed murals, and despite the substantial age difference, their friendship deepened; Gray found in her intellectual and spiritual guidance that was lacking in his own family. He remained in Tucson until enlisting in the U. S. Army in 1942, and they corresponded frequently during the the war. When a stroke in 1948 prevented Miss Grace from participating in the extensive tour of Europe she was arranging for a small group of friends, including Gray, she provided sufficient funds and insisted he make the trip on his own. Another stroke, suffered while Gray was traveling, left her in a coma; he was not permitted to see her again. Upon her death in 1954, Gray inherited "Eleven Arches."

Between 1943 and 1946, Gray was stationed in England, France, and Germany, serving in Army Signal Intelligence. Most of his work was performed at night, and he spent his free time drawing. While in London, Gray produced many colored pencil drawings of buildings that had been bombed. In France, a Red Cross volunteered to introduce him to Jacques Villon; although unfamiliar with the artist, Gray knew of Villon's brother, Marcel Duchamp, and accepted the invitation. Jacques and Gaby Villon lived near Gray's billet and he became a frequent visitor. Their friendship was important to his development as an artist. After being discharged from the Army in 1946, Gray remained in France to work with Villon who introduced him to the study of color and the concept of intellectual quality in painting. Gray also studied informally with André Lhote, Villon's former teacher. "American Painters in Paris," an exhibition presented in 1946 at Galerie Durand-Ruel, included work by Cleve Gray.

He returned to New York City in 1946. In the tight post-war rental market Gray managed to find a small room upstairs from a grocery store on East 106th Street for use as a studio. He commenced painting the London Ruins series based on drawings he had made during the war, and began thinking about exhibiting in New York. Gray secured introductions to Pierre Matisse, Curt Valentin, and Dorothy Miller. They encouraged him, but no opportunities came his way until Germain Seligmann, whose gallery was expanding its scope to include contemporary art, followed the advice of Curt Valentin and looked at Gray's work. Gary's first solo exhibition, held at Jacques Seligmann and Co., included selections from the London Ruins series, paintings done in Maine and Arizona, and a few portraits. The New York Times called it "an auspicious first," and one of the London Ruins series was selected by Edward Alden Jewell for the "Critic's Exhibition" at Grand Central Gallery.

Gray found New York City too frenetic. In 1949 he bought a large, old house in Warren, Connecticut, and lived and worked at "Graystones" for the remainder of his life. Half of a 6-car garage was converted to a studio; many years later, his studio moved to a barn, its renovation and design planned by sculptor and architect Tony Smith.

He married Francine du Plessix in 1957. Always interested in literature and philosophy, in the 1960s Francine du Plessix Gray began contributing articles to The New Yorker and is still affiliated with the magazine. Her reviews and articles appeared in prominent publications, and she wrote several award-winning novels and biographies. Their sons, Thaddeus and Luke (now a painter), were born in 1959 and 1961. Francine's mother, Tatiana du Plessix (the hat designer Tatiana of Saks), and step-father, the sculptor Alexander Liberman (also former art director of Vogue and later editorial director of Condé Nast publications) became Cleve Gray's closest friends.

The paintings and drawings of Cleve Gray - first consisting of figures and portraits, and then abstract compositions - were often produced in series. The earliest series, London Ruins, grew from the colored pencil drawings made while stationed in London during World War II. Travels to France, Italy, Greece, Morocco, Hawaii, Spain, Egypt, Japan, and Czechoslovakia, inspired many series, among them: Etruscan, Augury, Ceres, Demeter Landscape, Hera, Morocco, Hawaii, Ramses, Perne, Hatshepsut, Roman Walls, Zen, and Prague. His hometown, the Holocaust, and musicians inspired other series: Warren, Sleepers Awake!, Bela Bartok, and Four Heads of Anton Bruckner. Some series were works on paper, others were collage canvases, and a few series later spawned prints. Gray began using acrylics in the 1940s. Although the medium offered many benefits, he did not always like its appearance and frequently returned to oils. Around 1966 Gray was painting almost exclusively with acrylic, and eventually developed a technique of thinning the paint and applying successive layers of color (sometimes by pouring or with a sponge) on cotton duck rather than traditional canvas.

Gray was attracted to sculpture, too, working in that medium at different points in his career. His first sculpture, in plaster, was completed in 1959. In the early 1960s he visited a commercial sand-casting foundry and became excited about learning to cast in bronze. He made about a dozen sculptures to cast in sand, but due to too much undercutting, their casting became too difficult a problem. Lava flows seen while in Hawaii during 1970 and 1971 inspired a return to sculpture. This time, he used wood, papier maché, and metal. Gray then decided these pieces should be cast in bronze, and he was determined to do it himself. Friends taught him the lost wax process and he began working at the Tallix Foundry in Peekskill, New York where, over the next year, he cast about forty bronzes.

Gray's best known work is Threnody, a lament for the dead of both sides in Vietnam. In 1972, Gray received a commission to fill a very large gallery of the soon-to-open Neuberger Museum of Art (State University of New York, College at Purchase) designed by Philip Johnson. Friends of the Neuberger Museum paid his expenses and Gray, who was enormously excited about the project he considered a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, donated his time. Developing plans for the execution of Threnody consumed most of his time during 1972 and 1973. Composed of a series of fourteen panels, each approximately twenty feet square, the piece presented a number of technical challenges. It was constructed and painted in situ during the summer and early fall of 1973. Since then, Threnody has been reinstalled at the Neuberger Museum of Art on several occasions.

Gray was commissioned to design liturgical vestments for two Episcopal churches in Connecticut in the 1970s. A chasuble, stoles, and a mitre were commissioned by the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut in 1984.

He won the "Outdoor Art at the Station Competition," for Union Station, Hartford, Connecticut. His very large porcelain enamel tile mural, Movement in Space, was installed on the façade of the transportation center in 1988.

Gray began writing occasional articles and exhibition reviews in the late 1940s. His concern with rational structure in art led him to question Abstract Expressionism and write "Narcissus in Chaos." This article, published in 1959 by The American Scholar, drew considerable attention. In 1960, Cosmopolitan published "Women - Leaders of Modern Art" that featured Nell Blaine, Joan Brown, Elaine de Kooning, Helen Frankenthaler, Sonia Gretchoff, Grace Hartigan, Ethel Magafan, Louise Nevelson, and Georgia O'Keeffe. Between 1960 and 1970, Gray was a contributing editor of Art In America, producing numerous articles (a few co-authored with Francine) and reviews for the periodical. He edited three books, David Smith by David Smith: Scupture and Writings, Hans Richter, and John Marin, all published by Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, and translated Marcel Duchamp's A l'Infinitif.

During the early 1960s, Gray became intensely focused on the situation in Vietnam. His first artistic response came in 1963 with Reverend Quan Duc, painted to commemorate a Buddhist monk who had immolated himself. Francine, too, felt strongly about the issue and over time the couple became increasingly active in the anti-war movement. They joined a number of organizations and helped to found a local chapter of Clergy and Laymen Concerned about Vietnam. The years 1968 and 1969 were an especially intense and active period for the Grays. They protested, wrote and spoke out against the war, raised funds to support anti-war political candidates, and on a few occasions were arrested and jailed. Writing for Art in America, editing the book series, and anti-war activities left little time for his art. In 1970 Gray refocused his attention on painting.

Beginning in 1947, Gray was always represented by a New York Gallery: Jacques Seligmann and Co. (1947-1959), Staempfli Gallery (1960-1965), Saidenberg Gallery (1965-1968), Betty Parsons Gallery (1968-1983), Armstrong Gallery (1984-1987), and Berry-Hill Galleries (1988-2003). He was represented by galleries in other cities, as well, but not as consistently or for such long periods.

He exhibited extensively in group and solo exhibitions throughout the United States and internationally. In addition to numerous solo exhibitions presented by the dealers who represented Gray, there were retrospective exhibitions at: Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Brooklyn Museum, Columbus Museum of Art, Krannert Art Museum (University of Illinois, Champaign), Princeton University Art Museum, Rhode Island School of Design, and Wadsworth Atheneum.

Many museums' permanent collections include the work of Cleve Gray, among them: Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Butler Institute of American Art, Columbus Museum of Art, Neuberger Museum of Art (SUNY, College at Purchase), the Museum of Modern Art (New York), Newark Museum, Oklahoma City Museum of Art, Phillips Collection, Sheldon Memorial Art Gallery (University of Nebraska, Lincoln), Smithsonian Institution, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Whitney Museum of American Art, and Yale University Art Gallery.

Cleve Gray served as artist-in-residence at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art in 1963 and at the Honolulu Academy of Arts in 1970, both sponsored by Ford Foundation programs. In 1980, he was appointed an artist-in-residence at the American Academy in Rome, where Francine concurrently served as a writer-in-residence; they returned for shorter periods during each of the subsequent seven years. Cleve Gray was presented the Connecticut Arts Award in 1987, and the Neuberger Museum of Art Lifetime Achievement Award in 1999. He was awarded an honorary degree by the University of Hartford in 1992, and was elected a member of The American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1998. In addition, he was a trustee of the Neuberger Museum of Art, New York Studio School, Rhode Island School of Design, and Wadsworth Atheneum.

Cleve Gray hit his head and suffered a massive subdural hematoma after falling on ice outside of his home. He died the following day, December 8, 2004.
Separated Material:
Exhibition catalogs and announcements and two scrapbooks donated to the Archives in 1967 and 1968 were microfilmed on reels D314-D315. Items on reel D315, transferred to the Smithsonian American Art Museum Library in 1975, are not described in this finding aid.
Provenance:
The Cleve Gray papers were donated to the Archives of American Art by Mr. Gray in 1967 and 1968. The bulk of the collection was given by his widow, Francine du Plessix Gray, in 2007 and 2008.
Restrictions:
Use of original material requires an appointment. Use of archival audiovisual recordigs with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Occupation:
Sculptors -- Connecticut  Search this
Painters -- Connecticut  Search this
Topic:
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
Vietnam War, 1961-1975 -- Protest Movements -- United States  Search this
Designers  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Women painters  Search this
Women sculptors  Search this
Genre/Form:
Poems
Articles
Photographs
Reviews (documents)
Notes
Illustrations
Notebooks
Sketches
Drafts (documents)
Video recordings
Sound recordings
Interviews
Manuscripts
Paintings
Prints
Watercolors
Drawings
Lectures
Citation:
Cleve Gray papers, 1933-2005. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.grayclev
See more items in:
Cleve Gray papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw92d3d47d0-baa3-4085-80f2-9b5d1730c052
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-grayclev
Online Media:

Midtown Galleries records

Creator:
Midtown Galleries  Search this
Names:
Midtown-Payson Galleries  Search this
Betts, Edward H., 1920-  Search this
Bishop, Isabel, 1902-1988  Search this
Cadmus, Paul, 1904-1999  Search this
Coiner, Charles T., 1897-  Search this
Davis, Gladys Rockmore, 1901-1967  Search this
Etnier, Stephen, 1903-1984  Search this
Etting, Emlen, 1905-1993  Search this
Fiene, Ernest, 1894-  Search this
Gruskin, Alan D. (Alan Daniel), 1904-1970  Search this
Gruskin, Mary J.  Search this
Guston, Philip, 1913-1980  Search this
Hale, Nathan Cabot  Search this
Healey, Francis C.  Search this
Kingman, Dong, 1911-  Search this
Lahm, Ren'ee, 1897-1945  Search this
Magafan, Ethel, 1916-1993  Search this
Maldarelli, Oronzio, 1892-1962  Search this
Mangravite, Peppino, 1896-  Search this
Martin, Fletcher, 1904-1979  Search this
Meyer, Fred  Search this
Moller, Hans, 1905-  Search this
Nagler, Edith Kroger, 1890-1986  Search this
Nagler, Fred, 1891-1983  Search this
Palmer, William C., 1906-  Search this
Parsons, Betty  Search this
Peirce, Waldo, 1884-1970  Search this
Reinhardt, Siegfried, 1925-1984  Search this
Rosenthal, Doris Patty, 1889-1971  Search this
Saarinen, Lilian Swann, 1912-1995  Search this
Schoener, Jason  Search this
Sepeshy, Zoltan, 1898-1974  Search this
Shulkin, Anatol, 1899-1961  Search this
Simkhovitch, Simka, 1893-1949  Search this
Sokole, Miron, 1901-  Search this
Soyer, Isaac, 1902-1981  Search this
Taubes, Frederic, 1900-  Search this
Thon, William, 1906-2000  Search this
Varga, Margit, 1908-2005  Search this
Vickrey, Robert, 1926-2011  Search this
Wingate, Arline, 1906-1998  Search this
Extent:
86.82 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Video recordings
Date:
1904-1997
Summary:
The records of Midtown Galleries measure 86.82 linear feet and date from 1904 to 1997. The collection documents the operation and general administration of the business and includes artist records, exhibition material, inventories, financial records, photographs, and printed material.
Scope and Content Note:
Records of Midtown Galleries [including the addition], circa 1904-1997, comprise 86.82 linear feet on 117 microfilm reels. Records are sparse for the early years when the gallery was operated as a cooperative. As the business expanded and became profitable, recordkeeping was more systematic and thorough. Records consist of administrative correspondence, 1927-1989 and undated; exhibition records, 1934-1982 and undated; inventories and sales records, 1946-1980 and undated; financial records, 1933-1957; miscellaneous, 1934-1985 and undated; photographs, circa 1925-circa 1980; printed matter, 1932-1982 and undated; personal papers of Alan D. and Mary J. Gruskin, 1932-1983 and undated; and Papers of Francis C. Healey, 1932-1935 and undated An addition, represents scattered material, 1932-1997 and undated, that remained after the gallery closed in 1995. It includes administrative records, 1934-1995 and undated; photographs circa 1938-1988 and undated; artists records, 1932-1993 and undated; exhibitions, 1958-1993 and undated; videotapes, 1977-1988; and oversize printed matter, 1973-1977 and undated Because microfilmimg of the Midtown Galleries records was already underway when this material was received, it could not be integrated with the main portion of the collection.

Administrative correspondence is categorized as General Correspondence, Artists Correspondence, and Artists Applications. General Correspondence is with clients, collectors, museums and galleries, arts organizations, and businesses providing services to Midtown Galleries, and concerns routine business matters. Artists Correspondence contains both personal and business letters since the Gruskins were close friends of many artists represented by Midtown Galleries. Artists Applications consists of correspondence with artists seeking representation by Midtown Galleries. Both accepted and rejected artists are included in this subseries.

Exhibition records includes schedules and general correspondence about cooperative exhibitions and traveling shows. Exhibition files, arranged by title, contain correspondence concerning arrangements for each show.

Inventories include listings by artist and by warehouse location; also, lists of paintings on consignment, paintings returned to artists, loan/shipping log, and "traffic cards." Sales records include "groups totals,: artists account ledger, and sales slips.

Financial records consist of bills paid, banking records, accounting records, and tax returns with related documentation.

Miscellaneous items include manuscripts of Isabel Bishop Catalogue Raisonne and Biography by Karl Lunde and The Art of Philip Guston by Lester D. Longman. Also included are legal documents such as Act of Incorporation, partnership agreement, and leases; 32 guest registers, 1924-1985 and undated, and 15 samples of artist-designed fabrics produced by Onandoga Silk Co., 1946-1947.

Photographs of people include founders Alan D. Gruskin and Francis C. Healey, Mary J. Gruskin (Mrs. Alan D.) and many artists affiliated with Midtown Galleries. Photographs of works of art are by Midtown artists and others. Also, illustrations for Painting in the U.S.A. by Alan D. Gruskin; 2 albums of photographs of the work of Waldo Peirce, circa 1925-1930s (probably compiled by Peirce). Photographs of exhibitions include Midtown Galleries exhibitions and shows elsewhere featuring works by Midtown artists. Miscellaneous photographs include: Gruskin's Department Store (Pa.); models used by artists Julien Binford, Henry Koerner, and Doris Rosenthal; properties owned by Julien Binford and Hans Moeller; Anatol Shulkin's travel pictures of the Soviet Union; store window displays featuring Midtown artists, and fashion models at Midtown Galleries.

Printed matter includes material produced by Midtown Galleries: exhiition catalogs, 1932-1983 and undated; news releases, 1932-1983 and undated; Midtown News, 1965-1970; and miscellaneous items, 1943-1970 and undated Printed matter produced by others includes is comprised of artists files consisting mainly of newsclippings; also, articles about Midtown Galleries and the Gruskins.

Personal papers of Mary J. and Alan D. Gruskin contain biographical information, correspondence, financial records, miscellaneous items, calendars, and writings of Alan D. Gruskin. Correspondence, 1931-1970 and undated, with family and friends concerns personal business; also, letters of condolence on the death of Alan D. Gruskin, 1970. Financial records include personal finances and documentation of gifts of artwork to institutions, with appraisals and tax information. Calendars, 1939-1983, record both personal engagements and some business appointments. Writings of Alan D. Gruskin include manuscripts and drafts of columns, short stories, a screenplay, radio broadcasts, and lecture notes from courses at Harvard.

Papers of Francis C. Healey are comprised of correspondence that relates to both gallery and ersonal business. Also included are scripts and drafts for radio broadcasts, printed matter, press releases, and proposals for radio programs.

Administrative records received with the addition include general correspondence, correspondence with clients, and correspondence regarding gifts, sales and purchases. Records concerning the sale of Midtown Galleries to John Whitney Payson include Gruskin's and Payson's inventories. Also, included is a history of the gallery.

Photographs are of the Gruskins, their friends, and country house; also, views of Midtown exhibitions, openings, artists, and individual works of art.

Artists records are comprised mainly of artists files, largely containing printed matter. Among the artists records are a file of holiday cards by various artists, many with original artwork. Also included are catalogs of group shows featuring Midtown artists at other galleries

Exhibition materials include announcements, news releases, catalogs, miscellaneous printed matter, and a guest book. A small number of these items are dated after Payson's purchase of Midtown Galleries.

Videotapes of William Palmer, Isabel Bishop, and Robert Vickrey, as well as oversize printed matter relating to Midtown artists, complement the artists records.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into 10 series. A detailed explanation of the arrangement of each series is provided with the series descriptions. Each series is subdivided, often by record type, with categories usually arranged chronologically; exceptions are noted. Administrative correspondence (Series 1) is arranged alphabetically, as are many inventories sales records (Series 3). Photographs of people, exhibitions, and works of art (Series 6) are arranged alphabetically, as are the artists files and exhibition clippings portions of the printed matter (Series 7). The addition is described separately in Appendix A; and, wherever possible, reel and frame numbers of related materials received and filmed with the addition have been included in the main text's series descriptions.

Missing Title

Series 1: Administrative Correspondence, 1927-1989, undated (51 linear ft.)

Series 2: Exhibitions, 1932-1982, undated (4 linear feet)

Series 3: Inventories and Sales Records, 1932-1980, undated (5.3 linear ft.)

Series 4: Financial Records, 1933-1957 (3.5 linear feet)

Series 5: Miscellaneous, 1934-1985, undated (2 linear feet)

Series 6: Photographs, circa 1925-circa 1980 (6.5 linear feet)

Series 7: Printed Matter, 1932-1990, undated (7.25 linear ft.)

Series 8: Personal Papers of Alan D. and Mary J. Gruskin, 1904-1990, undated (4.5 linear feet)

Series 9: Papers of Francis C. Healey, 1932-1935, undated (0.5 linear ft.)

Series 10: Addition, 1932-1997, undated (2.5 linear feet)
Historical Note:
Alan D. Gruskin (1904-1970) hoped to become an artist, but while still a student realized that his talents were better suited to art administration than painting. Following graduation from Harvard University, he worked at a New York gallery that specialized in old masters, returning home to Pennsylvania after a year to pursue a writing career that ultimately proved unsuccessful. Gruskin returned to New York and opened Midtown Galleries at 559 Fifth Avenue in 1932. Specializing in work by living American artists, Midtown was one of a rather small number of commercial galleries in New York City that showed contemporary American art. Midtown Galleries represented academic and realist painters, and purposely avoided abstract art.

Founded during the Depression, Midtown Galleries was a shoe-string operation in its early years. Originally operated as a cooperative, Midtown Galleries' participating artists contributed to the costs and work of presenting exhibitions. Between 1932 and 1935, Gruskin served as "Art Director" of the gallery and his business partner, Francis C. Healey was "Publicity Director." Healey appears to have been responsible for weekly broadcasts on NBC radio designed to interest people in visiting the gallery. The 15-minute programs consisted of discussions with museum directors, curators, artists, writers, and musicians about a broad range of cultural topics. Copies of the scripts were offered for a dime, and the payments mailed by radio listeners bought Gruskin's meals. During this period, Gruskin lived in the gallery. After Healey's departure in 1935, Midtown Galleries ceased to be run as a cooperative.

Midtown Galleries usually represented approximately two dozen artists, and many remained with the gallery for decades. They included: Julien Binford, Isabel Bishop, Paul Cadmus, Gladys Rockmore Davis, Emlen Etting, Maurice Freedman, Dong Kingman, Oronzio Maldarelli, William C. Palmer, Waldo Peirce, Doris Rosenthal, Zoltan L. Sepeshy, Frederic Taubes, William Thon, Margit Varga, and Robert Vickrey.

Gruskin worked to educate and interest the public in American art and to promote the artists he represented. In addition to countless reviews, articles, and catalog essays, he wrote three books: Painting in the U.S.A. (1946), The Watercolors of Dong Kingman and How the Artist Works (1958), William Thon: The Artist and His Technique (1964). Gruskin advocated the use of fine art in advertising and industry, obtaining commissions for his artists and at the same time assisting clients in building corporate collections. A prime example is the Upjohn Company which, at Gruskin's urging, included reproductions of paintings in "Your Doctor Speaks," a series of public service announcements. Many of the paintings were purchased subsequently, forming the basis of the Upjohn Collection. A traveling exhibition, The Upjohn Company Collection of Contemporary American Paintings, was circulated by Midtown Galleries and featured in a Life magazine article about fine art and advertising. Another example is the fabric patterns, based on paintings by several of Midtown Galleries' artists, commissioned by the Onandoga Silk Company; the fabrics were used for dresses by popular designers, with fashion shows and window displays of paintings by the participating artists at selected department stores throughout the country. Working closely with architects and interior designers, Gruskin and Midtown Galleries were innovators in the use of domestic and business settings to showcase art with Art In Interiors, a series of exhibitions held annually between 1952 and 1961.

Midtown Galleries was a pioneer in circulating traveling exhibitions to colleges and art associations in communities distant from major art museums and commercial galleries. Beginning in 1936 and or more than 35 years, Midtown Galleries circulated 8-10 shows throughout the country each year; most were group shows organized around a theme, though occasional solo exhibitions were offered. Other important exhibitions off the premises were the Central Illinois Art Exposition, 1939, and the contemporary American art exhibition at the New York World's Fair, 1964-1965. The 1939 show organized by Gruskin for the Bloomington, Illinois, Art Association was a large exhibition of American art borrowed from a variety of institutions; the very well-publicized show was heavily attended, drawing visitors from a large area of the rural Midwest, many of whom had never visited a museum or seen original art.

Missing Title

1932 -- established as a cooperative gallery at 559 Fifth Ave. by Alan D. Gruskin (Art Director) and Francis C. Healey (Public Relations Director); Midtown Galleries presented programs on contemporary American art broadcast by NBC radio

1934-1935 -- Tudor City Art Galleries at 8 Prospect Place, New York City, featuring works by Midtown Galleries' artists and others, administered by Gruskin and Healey

1935 -- departure of Francis C. Healey; gallery moved to 605 Madison Ave.; gallery ceased to be run as a cooperative

1936 -- began traveling exhibitions to universities, museums, and regional art associations

1939 -- Central Illinois Art Exposition (Bloomington, Ill.)

1946 -- San Francisco branch opened and closed; publication of Painting in the U.S.A. by Alan D. Gruskin

1951 -- gallery moved to 17 East 57th Street

1958 -- publication of The Watercolors of Dong Kingman and How the Artist Works by Alan D. Gruskin

1962 -- gallery moved to 11 East 57th Street

1964 -- exhibition of contemporary American art at the New York World's Fair, organized by Midtown Galleries; shown in American Interiors Pavilion, this was the only exhibit of its kind at the Fair; publication of William Thon: The Artist and His Technique by Alan D. Gruskin

1966 -- loan of Midtown Galleries' records for microfilming by the Archives of American Art; this small selection, along with many other gallery records, was donated by Mary Gruskin to the Archives between 1972 and 1991, with an additional gift in 1997

1970 -- death of Alan D. Gruskin (1904-1970); Mary J. Gruskin assumes position of Director

1972 -- first portion of Midtown Galleries' records donated to the Archives of American Art by Mrs. Gruskin

1985 -- sale of Midtown Galleries to John Whitney Payson; Bridget Moore, Director, and Mary J. Gruskin, Director Emerita

1986 -- majority of Midtown Galleries' records acquired by the Archives of American Art

1990 -- name changed to Midtown-Payson Galleries; gallery moved to 745 Fifth Ave.

1991 -- additional gift of records by Mrs. Gruskin

1992 -- records arranged, described, and prepared for microfilming

1993 -- microfilming began; continued sporadically, in small segments

1995 -- Midtown-Payson Galleries closed

1997 -- additional gift of records by Mrs. Gruskin

1999 -- microfilming completed
Provenance:
Midtown Galleries loaned a small number of records consisting of news releases, 1939-1966, and exhibition schedules to the Archives of American Art for microfilming in 1966. Subsequently, Mary J. Gruskin donated this material, along with many other gallery records, to the Archives in several installments between 1972 and 1991; an additional gift was received in 1997. The portion loaned in 1966 is now integrated with the main records and has been refilmed in sequence. Unfortunately, the addition of 1997 was received in Washington, D.C. after microfilming was well underway. The addition has been microfilmed and described separately as Series 10. Wherever possible, the main text has been annotated with reel and frame numbers for related items contained in the addition.
Restrictions:
The collection is open for research. Patrons must use microfilm copy.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Topic:
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
Function:
Art galleries, Commercial -- New York (State)
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Video recordings
Citation:
Midtown Galleries records, 1904-1997. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution
Identifier:
AAA.midtgall
See more items in:
Midtown Galleries records
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw914dd4711-6742-49ca-86c0-2e99aad538ea
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-midtgall

Joseph Cornell Study Center Collection

Artist:
Cornell, Joseph  Search this
Names:
Benton, Elizabeth Cornell  Search this
Cornell, Robert  Search this
Extent:
196.8 Linear feet
186 Nitrate negatives
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Nitrate negatives
Photographs
Place:
New York, New York
Date:
1750-1980, bulk 1930-1972
Summary:
The Joseph Cornell Study Center collection measures 196.8 linear feet and dates from 1750 to 1980, with the bulk of the material dating from 1930 to 1972. Documenting the artistic career and personal life of assemblage artist Joseph Cornell (1903-1972), the collection is primarily made up of two- and three-dimensional source material, the contents of the artists' studio, his record album collection, and his book collection and personal library. The collection also includes diaries and notes, financial and estate papers, exhibition materials, collected artifacts and ephemera, photographs, correspondence, and the papers of Robert Cornell (1910-1965) and Helen Storms Cornell (1882-1966), the artist's brother and mother.
Scope and Contents:
The Joseph Cornell Study Center collection measures 196.8 linear feet and dates from 1750 to 1980, with the bulk of the material dating from 1930 to 1972. Documenting the artistic career and personal life of assemblage artist Joseph Cornell (1903-1972), the collection is primarily made up of two- and three-dimensional source material, the contents of the artists' studio, his record album collection, and his book collection and personal library. The collection also includes diaries and notes, financial and estate papers, exhibition materials, collected artifacts and ephemera, photographs, correspondence, and the papers of Robert Cornell (1910-1965) and Helen Storms Cornell (1882-1966), the artist's brother and mother.

Correspondence is with collectors, museums, galleries, artists, friends, family, charity organizations, admirers and those admired by Cornell, and World War II European pen pals. Discussions about the appreciation, donation, sale, purchase, and exhibition of Cornell's works are frequent, with the inclusion of shipping and loan documentation or notices of payment installments. Galleries and museums frequently request that Cornell agree to an exhibition, which he often declines, and fans request free works be mailed or affordable works be sold to them. With friends, artists, and those he admired, Cornell discussed topics that fascinate him, included bits of poetry or philosophical musings, sent clippings or a collaged letter, and occasionally discussed a project or work in process. After World War II, when so many were displaced by the war in Europe, Cornell answered ads for pen pals in the "Christian Science Monitor," often responding to requests for clothing or other goods, and sometimes exchanging many letters over several years. Family correspondence is with his mother, sisters, brother, and others, and often notes activities of the day, foods eaten, and general musings, as well as occasionally mentioning a project or artwork. Correspondents of note include Stan Brakhage, Betty Freeman, Charles Henri Ford, Allegra Kent, Yayoi Kusama, Roberto Matta, Marianne Moore, Octavio Paz, Sonia Sekula, Pavel Tchelitchew, Parker Tyler, Dorothea Tanning, and Betsy von Furstenberg, among others.

Cornell was often preoccupied with his thoughts, feelings, memories, a project or thematic "exploration," and jotted notes on seemingly any surface available. Notes and musings are on napkins, the backs of envelopes, newspaper clippings, and paper bags from record and magazine stores. Frequently, an observation would trigger a lengthy nostalgic moment, or a "feé," fairy-like child or girl, would capture his imagination and lead him to thoughts of 18th-century ballerinas and silent film stars. Cornell wrote longer diary notes, sometimes expanding on an earlier notation or emotion, and often wrote when he experienced trouble sleeping or woke early. Drafted letters to imaginary muses or admired individuals are interspersed among diaries, often revealing Cornell's yearnings to find emotional intimacy and human connection. Over time, Cornell revisited his notes and occasionally made further notations about renewed thoughts on a topic, dating the note with "revisited" or "reviewed." Notes are often written in a stream-of-consciousness style, for example, jumping from the mention of a record album or composer, to a ballerina of the same period, a note about a French poet, the memory of childhood, or an observation made earlier in the day, all in the space of a few lines. Notes about artistic processes or meanings behind works or images do occasionally emerge from the tangled, poetic notations. Notes also often provide insights into Cornell's internal emotional state and give clues about his intentions behind an artwork or a particular thematic fixation.

Financial materials document Cornell's professional and personal business activities, including the sale of artworks, annual expenses for supplies and household incidentals, payments and schedules for personal assistants, receipts for donations to charities and nonprofits, and tax documents. There is also information about who worked as assistants, or "helpers," in his later years and where Cornell purchased art supplies. Additionally, specific details are documented through receipts and invoices, such as what kind of paint he purchased. Estate records include preparations made for Cornell's artworks after his death, and clippings about other deceased artist's estates show that he thought often about such arrangements in his later years.

Exhibition files highlight several select solo exhibitions for Cornell, as well as preparations and planning for the "Robert Cornell: Memorial Exhibition" in honor of his brother in 1966. Also included are several early exhibition catalogs and announcements, including "Surréalisme" (January 9-29, 1932) and "Exhibition of Objects (Bibloquet) by Joseph Cornell" (December 6-31, 1939) at the Julien Levy Gallery, and "Romantic Museum: Portraits of Women, Constructions and Arrangements by Joseph Cornell" (December 1946) at the Hugo Gallery.

Film projects and collected film materials consist of files related to Cornell's various experimental film projects: "Aviary," "Cappuccino," "Centuries of June," "Fable for Fountains," "Nymphlight," "Serafina's Garden," and unrealized film scenario "Monsieur Phot." Files include film-making notes, correspondence, and photographs. Cornell's interest in film also led him to collect film-related materials, such as film stills, film posters, and screening programs. Scattered correspondence documents the interest other institutions and individuals had in purchasing and viewing his collection. Though most of his collected film stills and movie posters were donated to the Anthology Film Archives, film stills from "Escape Me Never" (1935) and "The Passion of Joan of Arc" (1928) are still within the collection, as well as film-screening programs for Cornell's collection of films.

Writing and design projects document Cornell's work authoring articles and designing issues of specialty dance magazine "Dance Index," and his layouts for popular magazines like "Good Housekeeping," "House and Garden," and "Mademoiselle." Other writing projects include brochures dedicated to opera singers Maria Malibran and Giulia Grisi, "Maria" and "Bel Canto Pet." Materials used for these brochures, such as copper photo engraving plates, are also found. Design work includes a series of Christmas cards created with The Museum of Modern Art as well as traced patterns ("textile tracings") and design clippings from Cornell's time working as a "textile designer" for Traphagen Commercial Textile Studio.

Cornell acquired troves of source material from bookstalls, antique stores, sporting good and department stores, hardware stores, and magazine and record shops. He kept boxes and files of material on admired individuals, such as actresses, artists, dancers, and singers, as well as on art projects or thematic "explorations." Files are on general topics such as American history, scientific phenomena, animals, plants, and humankind, as well as on series of artworks, such as "Castles," "Homage to the Romantic Ballet," and "Medici Slot Machines." Focused "exploration" projects include "Celestial Theatre," "Colombier," "GC 44," and "Switzerland," among others. Materials include photographs, photostats, maps, book fragments, autographed letters, notes, collage clippings and cutouts, collected prints and engravings, box and collage fragments, and scattered artifacts.

Collected ephemera includes large amounts of blank postcards and greeting cards, stamps, collected bus and train tickets, food labels and packaging, decals, and other materials. Artifacts are three-dimensional collected objects and source objects, which include found objects from the streets, dried flowers, and pieces of nature gathered from walks around his neighborhood. Cornell may have gathered materials because they inspired a memory or nostalgic feeling, or because they fit with a bin of other similar objects to select from for an artwork in progress.

Photographs found within the collection are of Cornell at work and as a child with family. Also found are assorted personal and family photographs, photographs of Cornell's attic and garage storage, and photographs of his Utopia Parkway house. Photographs of artwork include few installation photographs, in addition to photographs of Cornell's boxes and collages. Collected photographic materials include vintage photographs, such as tintypes, a cyanotype, stereoscopic glass slides, albumen prints, cabinet cards, and cartes-de-visite. Cornell also collected cased photographs, such as daguerreotypes, ambrotypes, and one opalotype. Negatives and photostats were often produced from various prints and even other photographs and used in Cornell's boxes and collages. Images are of men and women, actors, authors, dancers, performers, well-known men and women, royalty, places, and artwork. Photographs of note include those by Hans Namuth of Willem and Lisa de Kooning and of Edward Hopper's bedroom; photographs by Henri Cartier-Bresson; a photograph by Julia Margaret Cameron; photographs by Brassai; and a photogravure by Alfred Stieglitz from "Camerawork."

Also found in the collection are works of art by others, including a sketch by Pavel Tchelitchew, as well as artwork by Cornell, such as unfinished collages, Rorschach drawings or ink blots, and childhood artwork. Printed material includes assorted bulletins, flyers, exhibition materials for other artists, journals, and sent printed membership and charity materials. Magazines, including "View," are also included, and often have annotations by Cornell or a note to "cut" or "review" with page numbers. A large amount of magazine and newspaper clippings are in the collection, sometimes collected with a group of like material by Cornell, and at other times simply gathered in heaps. Occasional annotations are also found on the clippings.

Cornell's personal library and book collection includes over 2500 titles, ranging from fiction, poetry, and cinema, to history, science, and travel. Notable among the titles are "Baedeker's" travel guides that Cornell often sourced for his "Hotel" box series, as well as an influential publication by Max Ernst, "La Femme 100 têtes," which includes a typed letter and exhibition flyer tucked within. Books often have annotations, some fairly extensive, by Cornell, and assorted collected items, notes, and correspondence tucked between pages. Pages were often cut by Cornell, either to make photostats and use in a box, or to file with other thematic "explorations." A wide range of authors and topics provide insight into Cornell's interests and to ideas behind artwork and diary notes. Cornell's collection of record albums includes over 145 records. These contain inserted notes and clippings and are often referenced in diary notes Cornell made, noting a recent album or song listened to while at work in his studio.

The papers of Cornell's mother, Helen Storms Cornell, and his brother, Robert Cornell, are also included in the collection. Both lived with Cornell his whole life, spending the most time with him at their home at 3708 Utopia Parkway. Financial materials document shared responsibilities for billing, utilities, household fixes and chores, and expenditures, and Helen kept detailed financial records in a series of ledgers. Robert notes when he borrowed money from Cornell, or when he means to pay Cornell back for the purchase of a typewriter. Activities documented in diaries also occasionally cross paths with Cornell, noting his visitors or an exchange of letters continued after introductions through Cornell. Personal activities, such as Robert's interest in his train collection and his drawing projects and cartoon series, are also documented.
Arrangement:
The Joseph Cornell Study Center Collection is arranged into 15 series:

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1917-1972 (Boxes 1, 98, OV118; 0.9 linear feet)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1813, 1934-circa 1973 (Boxes 1-8, 86; 6.5 linear feet)

Series 3: Diaries and Notes, 1940-1976 (Boxes 8-10, 98-99, 135, OV108, OV119; 3.5 linear feet)

Series 4: Personal Business and Estate Records, 1950-1978 (Boxes 10-14; 4.1 linear feet)

Series 5: Exhibition Files, 1932-1973 (Box 14; 0.3 linear feet)

Series 6: Film Projects and Collected Film Materials, circa 1924-1972 (Boxes 14-16, 100, 133; 1.6 linear feet)

Series 7: Writing and Design Projects, circa 1910s, 1936-1962 (Boxes 16-18, 86, 100, 131-132, OV109-OV111, OV120-OV122; 3.6 linear feet)

Series 8: Source Material, 1750-circa 1911, 1926-1972 (Boxes 19-49, 86-92, 96, 100-105, 126-130, 132-137, OV112-OV115, OV125; 42.2 linear feet)

Series 9: Artifacts and Ephemera, 1768, circa 1839-1972 (Boxes 49-52; 3.2 linear feet)

Series 10: Photographic Material, circa 1800s-1972 (Boxes 52-56, 80-86, 93, 106, 128, 133, OV116, OV123-OV124; 7.5 linear feet)

Series 11: Artwork, circa 1810-1972 (Boxes 56-57, 107, OV117; 1.2 linear feet)

Series 12: Printed Material, 1855-1972 (Boxes 57-76, 94-96, 107; 16 linear feet)

Series 13: Book Collection and Personal Library, 1722-1980 (99.8 linear feet)

Series 14: Record Album Collection, circa 1925-1974 (3.2 linear feet)

Series 15: Cornell Family Papers, 1910-1980 (Boxes 77-79, 97, 107; 3.2 linear feet)
Biographical / Historical:
Joseph Cornell (1903-1972) was a self-taught assemblage and collage artist, and filmmaker, active in New York City. He was born in Nyack, New York on December 24, 1903, and died of heart failure at his home in Queens, New York on December 29, 1972. The oldest of four children, he was born Joseph I. Cornell to his mother, Helen Storms Cornell (1882-1966), and his father, Joseph I. Cornell (1875-1917). Cornell had two younger sisters, Elizabeth ("Betty") Cornell Benton (1905-2000) and Helen ("Sissy") Cornell Jagger (1906-2001), as well as one brother, Robert Cornell (1910-1965), who had cerebral palsy.

Cornell attended the Phillips Academy, a preparatory boarding school in Andover, Massachusetts, beginning shortly after his father's death in 1917. He attended for four years but did not receive a diploma, and soon began work as a textile salesman for the William Whitman Company in Manhattan. His work took him, by foot, through the city, visiting secondhand bookshops on Fourth Avenue, browsing music stores and magazine shops, and catching early shows at the Metropolitan Opera House. He would occasionally wait outside the stage doors for favorite singers and dancers to emerge, requesting signatures on photographs or bits of costumes.

Around 1926, Cornell joined the Christian Science Church, joined by his brother Robert shortly thereafter, and both continued to be lifelong members. Cornell kept a number of books in his personal library on Christian Science teachings and regularly subscribed to "The Christian Science Monitor."

After living in several rental houses in Bayside, New York, Cornell's mother purchased a house for the family in 1929 in Flushing, Queens. Cornell, along with his mother and brother, would live at 3708 Utopia Parkway, for the rest of their lives. His two sisters soon married and moved away, eventually settling in Westhampton, Long Island and in the poultry-farming business.

With no formal art training to speak of, Cornell's first work was a Max Ernst-inspired collage, "Untitled (Schooner)," created in 1931. He was especially inspired by Ernst's collage novel, "La Femme 100 têtes," published in 1929. French artist Odilon Redon was also among the few artists Cornell named as an influence on his art. His first sculptural works were small, cardboard pill boxes with bits of ephemera, costume adornments, and nature hidden inside. Cornell also created a series of glass bell jar works, placing small trinkets and Victorian-era-like compositions within. It was these early collages and bell jar works that were included in Cornell's debut exhibition, "Surréalisme" (January 9-29, 1932), a group show at the Julien Levy Gallery. Cornell designed the announcement for the show and exhibited alongside Max Ernst, Man Ray, Pierre Roy, Pablo Picasso, Marcel Duchamp, Eugène Atget, George Platt Lynes, Jean Cocteau, and Salvador Dalí. Months later, Cornell was invited to have his first solo show, "Objects by Joseph Cornell: Minutiae, Glass Bells, Shadow Boxes, Coups d'Oeil, Jouets Surréalistes" (November 26-December 30, 1932), also at the Julien Levy Gallery.

In 1932, after eleven years of work, Cornell was laid off from the William Whitman Company due to the Great Depression. Soon after, he took on more responsibility in the church, working part-time as an attendant in the Christian Science Reading Room in Great Neck, New York. Beginning in 1933, he taught Sunday school classes for three years and in 1935, became the Sunday school librarian. However, his religious activities and artistic ventures continued to remain separate.

In the early 1930s, Cornell progressed from movie lover to filmmaker. When Julien Levy began his New York Film Society in 1933, holding screenings of various experimental films in the gallery, Cornell began buying and collecting films and film stills in earnest. He set up a 16-millimeter projector in his home to screen favorites, such as those by Georges Méliès, D.W. Griffith, and Louis Feuillade. His collection quickly grew to over 2,500 film stills and several hundred films, and included silent era films, such as nature documentaries, goofy newsreels, travelogues, early cartoons, and slapstick comedies, as well as several feature films. In 1933, Cornell wrote a screenplay, or "scenario," entitled "Monsieur Phot." Between 1935 and 1937, Cornell also occasionally created publicity photomontages for Universal and Columbia studios. Of the nearly thirty films Cornell created, periods of activity can generally be separated into two areas: collage films of the late 1930s, consisting of combined elements from films in his own collection, and films he directed in the 1950s, which were collaborations with other filmmakers set in New York City. "Rose Hobart," Cornell's most celebrated collage film, was created and shown in the Julien Levy Gallery in 1936 and includes clipped footage from "East of Borneo." Later films were directed and filmed with cinematographers Stan Brakhage, Rudy Burckhardt, and Larry Jordan.

In 1934, Cornell began a job at the Traphagen Commercial Textile Studio as a "textile designer," a job he held for six years. Continuing to work at his kitchen table in the evenings, Cornell completed his first assemblage box construction, "Untitled (Soap Bubble Set)," in 1936. It was first exhibited at The Museum of Modern Art's show, "Fantastic Art, Dada and Surrealism" (December 9, 1936-January 17, 1937). This work was also the first to be acquired by a museum, purchased for $60.00 by the Wadsworth Atheneum in Massachusetts in 1938. Cornell's European debut was also in 1938, as one of three Americans represented in the "Exposition Internationale du Surréalisme" (January 17-Febuary 24, 1938) at the Galerie Beaux-Arts in Paris, alongside Man Ray and Anne Clark.

At the end of 1939, Cornell began corresponding with poet Charles Henri Ford, founder of avant-garde magazine "View," Pavel Tchelitchew, and Parker Tyler. After his "Soap Bubble Sets," this period saw the development of Cornell's homages to singers and actresses, including "Untitled (Fortune-Telling Parrot for Carmen Miranda)," the destroyed "Garbo (Greta Garbo in the Legendary Film 'The Crystal Mask,' c. 1845)," and "Dressing Room for Gilles." He also began using photostats of art reproduction prints, as with the print of Jean Antoine-Watteau's painting, "Pierrot" (circa 1719), used in his "Gilles" box.

In the 1940s, the Romantic ballet emerged as Cornell's new topic of interest. Through his friend Pavel Tchelitchew, Cornell was introduced to the School of American Ballet and New York City Ballet founders, Lincoln Kirstein and George Balanchine. Cornell collected dance memorabilia and had a great love of the Romantic ballet. His favorite dancers were primarily ballerinas of the nineteenth century, including Fanny Cerrito, Marie Taglioni, Fanny Elssler, Lucille Grahn, and Carlotta Grisi. Cornell's "Homage to the Romantic Ballet" works largely took the shape of jewel-box style wooden boxes with glass overlays and included bits of velvet, tulle, sequins, crystals, and chiffon, occasionally collected from dancers themselves. His most well-known work of this series is "Taglioni's Jewel Casket" (1940). Cornell also admired several living ballet dancers, including Tamara Toumanova, Zizi Jeanmaire, and Allegra Kent, who would all make their way into Cornell's box works and/or collages. Collecting for the "exploration," "Portrait of Ondine," Cornell's cased portfolio dedication to Fanny Cerrito and her role in the ballet "Ondine," began in the 1940s, though not completed until around 1960.

In late 1940, Cornell quit his job at Traphagen to concentrate on freelance commercial magazine design and editorial work during the day and his artwork at night. That same year, Charles Henri Ford started "View" magazine to promote Surrealists and Neo-Romantics in New York City and often asked Cornell to contribute. Published in the December 1941-January 1942 issue, one of his early contributions was a collage dedication to stage actress Hedy Lamarr: "Enchanted Wanderer: Excerpt from a Journey Album for Hedy Lamarr" (1941). Along with writing the accompanying text, he created a photomontage of Lamarr with her face overlaying the painted portrait of a Renaissance boy by Italian painter Giorgione. Peggy Guggenheim, at the advice of Marcel Duchamp, purchased multiple Cornell works prior to opening her new gallery, Art of This Century. Cornell also befriended Roberto Matta Echaurren, another Surrealist living in exile, who introduced him to Robert Motherwell.

After deciding to fully dedicate his time to his art in early 1940, he set up a studio in his basement. Complete with floor-to-ceiling wooden shelving, he kept his large collection of boxed source material stacked with handwritten labels in cardboard boxes. Themed folders of materials such as "Stamps" or "Maps" were kept in stacks and works in progress and finished works were stored in the basement, garage, and attic. Entering a renewed period of productivity, Cornell embarked on many new and important box projects in 1942. One of the first boxes created in his new basement studio, and the first of the "Penny Arcade" or "Medici Slot Machine" series, was "Medici Slot Machine" (1942), which includes a photostat of "Portrait of Marquess Massimiliano Stampa" (1557) by Sofonisba Anguissola. Another work from this time is the first of his "Castle" or "Palace" series, "Setting for a Fairy Tale" (1942), which uses a photostat of a French building from Jacques Androuet du Cerceau's book, "Les Plus excellents bastiments de France" (1576). "Untitled (Pharmacy)" (circa 1942) was the first of his "Pharmacy" series and included twenty-two apothecary jars. Cornell tended to work in series and created thirteen "Palace" boxes between 1942 and 1951, and ultimately created six "Pharmacy" works.

In 1943, Cornell began working at an electronics company, the Allied Control Company, Inc., to do his part to contribute to the defense effort during the war. He also sent correspondence and care packages to displaced Europeans, who listed their needs in "The Christian Science Monitor." Influenced by World War II, one of his strongest works to emerge in 1943 was "Habitat Group for a Shooting Gallery." Another notable work to come out of this period, "The Crystal Cage (Portrait of Berenice)," was an excerpt from one of his album "explorations" that was published in the January 1943 issue of "View."

Cornell left his job at Allied Control in 1944, but soon began working at the Garden Centre in Flushing, owned by a fellow Christian Scientist. Cornell was often nostalgic for this time in his life, devoting an entire "exploration" of material fondly remembered as "GC 44." He rode a bicycle to work and enjoyed collecting trips gathering dried grasses, driftwood, shells, and other relics of nature on the same bicycle as he rode through the streets of Queens. During this time, he continued to tend to his projects for "Dance Index," a magazine founded in 1942 by Lincoln Kirstein, but taken over by Donald Windham in 1944. Cornell designed several covers for the magazine and was given control of the entire summer 1944 issue, which he devoted to the Romantic ballet. He also devoted a special 1945 issue to Hans Christian Andersen, making great use of the New York Public Library Picture Collection.

Throughout the 1940s, Cornell continued to support himself with commercial design work for magazines like "Vogue," "Good Housekeeping," "Harper's Bazaar," "Town & Country," and "Mademoiselle." In 1946, after thirteen years at the Julien Levy Gallery, he joined the Hugo Gallery. In December 1946, Cornell's solo exhibition, "Romantic Museum at the Hugo Gallery: Portraits of Women by Joseph Cornell," celebrated his favorite movie stars, singers, and ballet dancers, and included his work created for the show, "Untitled (Penny Arcade Portrait of Lauren Bacall)." Cornell's "Greta Garbo" box, as well as "Souvenir for Singleton," an homage to Jennifer Jones and her role in the film "Love Letters," were also included in the show. In late 1948, his West Coast debut was in the exhibition, "Objects by Joseph Cornell," held at the Copley Gallery. The end of the 1940s saw the final issue of "View" magazine in 1947, the closure of the Julien Levy Gallery in April 1949, and Cornell's departure from the Hugo Gallery after his last show in November 1949.

In late 1949, Cornell joined the Charles Egan Gallery, known primarily for showing Abstract Expressionists. At this time, Cornell was working on a new series of boxes known as his "Aviary" works, most of which include a white-painted box with cutouts of birds mounted on wood. Though he had worked on bird-related boxes before, including an "Owl" series in the mid-1940s, his "Fortune Telling Parrot" (1939), and "Object 1941" (1941), these newer works were stripped of French elements and left "clean and abstract" by design. His first show at the Egan Gallery, "Aviary by Joseph Cornell" (December 7, 1949-January 7, 1950), included twenty-six "Aviary" works, nearly all created in 1949. Donald Windham agreed to write the foreword for the exhibition catalog, a single folded sheet, and Cornell gave him one of the boxes in the show, "Cockatoo: Keepsake Parakeet," in appreciation. Through the Egan Gallery, Cornell became friends with a new group of artists, including Franz Kline, Jack Tworkov, and Willem de Kooning. Cornell also held two screenings of a selection of his collected films at Subjects of the Artist, an art school founded by Robert Motherwell, Mark Rothko, David Hare, and William Baziotes.

In 1950, Cornell's second show at the Egan Gallery, "Night Songs and Other New Work" (December 1, 1950-January 13, 1951), introduced his new "Observatory" series. These works are largely defined by stark, whitewashed spaces with astronomical charts and constellations replacing colorful birds. The Museum of Modern Art purchased its first Cornell work from this show in early 1951, "Central Park Carrousel, in Memoriam" (1950).

For three months in 1951, Cornell was beset by various ailments and had trouble finding the energy to create new work. He worried more for his aging mother and the health of his brother. After a monthlong vacation with his sisters in Westhampton, he returned with renewed interest in Emily Dickinson's poetry. His whitewashed boxes took on a new form in his newest "Dovecote" series, using grids and circular cutouts. The works then transformed into homages to Dickinson, notably "Toward the Blue Peninsula: For Emily Dickinson" (circa 1953), and then to his "Hotel" series. Cornell's "Hotel" boxes include photostats of vintage European ads for hotels collected from vintage travel guides, especially "Baedeker's," adhered to the back walls of the boxes. Another new series of work, his "Juan Gris" series, was dedicated to Cubist artist Juan Gris. Between 1953 and the mid-1960s, Cornell created at least fifteen "Juan Gris" boxes, which often include a cutout of a white cockatoo in a Cubist-collage habitat. Cornell's third and last show at Egan Gallery, "Night Voyage" (February 10-March 28, 1953), included some of these newest works. After leaving Egan Gallery, his work was introduced to Chicago collectors in a solo show at the Frumkin Gallery, "Joseph Cornell: 10 Years of His Art" (April 10-May 7, 1953), which included nearly thirty pieces. Cornell's first museum retrospective was this same show held at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis (July 12-August 30, 1953).

As New York City continued to change, Cornell grew more nostalgic for the city he had explored since the 1920s. The impending closure of the Third Avenue El train prompted him to dream up a film project to capture its last days, resulting in "Gnir Rednow," a reworking of Stan Brakhage's 1955, "Wonder Ring." During this time, Cornell joined the Stable Gallery, run by Eleanor Ward, interacting often with Robert Rauschenberg, Cy Twombly, and Joan Mitchell, remaining there until the end of the 1950s. His astronomy-themed exhibition, "Winter Night Skies" (December 12, 1955-January 13, 1956), included his "Night Skies" series of work with celestial chart fragments, Greek mythological figures, and paint-splattered "windows" representative of star-filled night skies. In 1956, he became aware of ballerina Allegra Kent, and began a series of work devoted to her, the first of which was "Via Parmigianino (Villa Allegra)" (1956), which included a photostat of a painting by Parmigianino, "The Madonna of the Long Neck" (circa 1540). In late 1957, after two years, Cornell had his last show at Stable Gallery, "Joseph Cornell: Selected Works" (December 2-31, 1957), consisting of a series of "Sand Fountain" boxes and "Space Object" or "Celestial Navigation" works. The "Sand Fountain" boxes included different colors of sand meant to flow within, often from the tops into cordial glasses. His "Celestial Navigations" included galaxy-like compositions set within the boxes, with rolling, painted cork balls, metal rings, and constellation charts, sometimes hovering over cordial glasses or clay pipes. This last Stable Gallery show earned him his first published profile, written by Howard Griffin for the December 1957 issue of "Art News." Also in 1957, he won the Kohnstamm Prize for Construction at the Art Institute of Chicago's 62rd Annual Exhibition of Paintings and Sculpture.

Towards the end of the 1950s, Cornell spent less time creating new bodies of work, and focused more on revisiting previous series and reviewing piles of collected source material. In 1959, Cornell returned to making collages, frequently sourcing popular magazines. In December 1959, Cornell was awarded $1,500 for his "Orion" collage, entered in the Art Institute of Chicago's "63rd American Exhibition of Painting and Sculpture." Also in December, he was offered a show at Bennington College in Vermont, which he titled, "Bonitas Solstitialis: Selected Works by Joseph Cornell and an exploration of the Colombier" (November 20-December 15, 1959). The show included one of his newest "explorations" of collected material related to "colombier," or pigeon houses.

By 1962, Cornell was working diligently on new collages, using Masonite boards and colorful magazine clippings. He also began creating collages using nude images interspersed with constellation clippings or hazy blue dyes. As in previous decades and art movements, Cornell became acquainted with new artists, spending less time in the city and more time hosting visitors at his Utopia Parkway home. Visitors included artists Walter De Maria, Robert Whitman, Andy Warhol, James Rosenquist, and Robert Indiana. Tony Curtis also became a frequent visitor and friend, introduced by Richard Feigen in 1964. The early 1960s was also the first time Cornell put out an advertisement for assistants in the "Long Island Star-Journal," employing a number of young men and women who helped organize clippings and run errands. Cornell also met Joyce Hunter, a young runaway waitress at a city coffee shop, who would occupy his thoughts and diary notes for the next several years. When she was murdered at the end of 1964, Cornell paid for her funeral. He went on to make several "Penny Arcade" collages in memoriam to her, including, "Penny Arcade (re-autumnal)" (1964).

In 1964, Cornell began friendships with several women including artist Carolee Schneeman, who was his first assistant in the early 1960s. He also met artist Yayoi Kusama through art dealer Gertrude Stein. After becoming friends, she visited him often and they exchanged letters and notes. As he did with other artist friends, Cornell supported her by purchasing several of her early watercolor paintings, and they stayed connected until his death in 1972.

Cornell's life greatly changed in 1965 with the death of his brother, Robert. By this time, his mother lived with his sister in Long Island, and Cornell was alone in the Utopia Parkway house for the first time. He exchanged frequent letters and phone calls with his mother and devoted much time to thinking about Robert and Joyce, often aligning them in his diary notations. Cornell also created a series of collages dedicated to his brother's memory, incorporating photostats of Robert's hundreds of drawings into Cornell's work, as with the later collage, "The Heart on the Sleeve" (1972). Cornell's "Time Transfixed" series of collages were also dedications to Robert's memory, referencing Magritte and Robert's love of trains. He mounted an exhibition, "Robert Cornell: Memorial Exhibition" (January 4-29, 1966), at the Robert Schoelkopf Gallery, where he showed Robert's artwork alongside his newly created collage dedications.

After Robert's death, Cornell relied more heavily on assistants, going through many part-time "helpers." In October 1966, Cornell's mother died, adding her to his constant thoughts and diaries. Though he was still grieving, he was given two major retrospectives in 1967. The first was at the Pasadena Art Museum, put on by James Demetrion and Walter Hopps, "An Exhibiton of Works by Joseph Cornell" (January 9-February 11, 1967). The second retrospective was at the Guggenheim Museum just three months later, "Joseph Cornell" (May 4-June 35, 1967), organized by Diane Waldman. After these shows, he was highlighted in the December 15, 1967 issue of "Life" in the article, "The Enigmatic Bachelor of Utopia Parkway."

In 1968, Cornell was given an "award of merit," which included a medal and $1,000, by the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. He was also given a medal and $1,000 by the Brandeis University Creative Arts Awards in the painting category, along with an exhibition. Days later, "The New York Times" announced Cornell the winner, along with Donald Judd, of India's first Triennale of Contemporary World Art. The Brandeis exhibition, "Boxes and Collages by Joseph Cornell" (May 20-June 23, 1968), was organized by William Seitz and concentrated on Cornell's more recent 1960s collages. Cornell was also included in the Metropolitan Museum of Art's hundredth anniversary show, "New York Painting and Sculpture: 1940 to 1970" (October 18, 1969-February 1, 1970), where twenty-two of Cornell's boxes were shown in their own gallery. At the end of 1970, Cornell was given a solo show at the Metropolitan, "Collages by Joseph Cornell" (December 10, 1970-January 24, 1971), which included forty-five of his newest collages.

Now preferring to stay closer to his home in Flushing, Cornell was more interested in sharing his art with young adults and children, than an adult audience. He hosted a group of high school students, sponsored by the Metropolitan Museum of Art's education department, at his home in conjunction with his collage show (1970-1971). He also showed his work in the art department of Queens College of the City University of New York. Cornell still hosted visitors on occasion, having Yoko Ono and John Lennon at his home at least once. Leila Hadley, Betsy von Furstenberg, and Anne Jackson also made frequent visits. With his deteriorating health, Cornell worried about what would happen to his work after his death and hired lawyer Harry Torczyner to help him plan his estate and get his affairs in order.

In 1972, Cornell had a show at the Cooper Union, a college in New York, specifically for children. He displayed his boxes and collages at child-height and had cherry soda and brownies at the opening reception on February 10. He then held a show at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, also for children: "Children's Preview of the Exhibition of Joseph Cornell – Collages and Boxes (April 18-June 17, 1972). In the winter of 1972, at the request of the Phoenix House drug treatment and prevention program, Cornell contributed to a charity project compiling limited-edition lithographic prints for a portfolio, which included artists like David Hockney, James Rosenquist, and Ellsworth Kelly.

On December 29, 1972, a week after turning sixty-nine, Cornell died of heart failure at his home. He was cremated and interred near the graves of his mother, father, and brother, overlooking the Hudson River in Nyack, New York.

Works Cited:

1. Hartigan, Lynda Roscoe. "Joseph Cornell: Navigating the Imagination." New Haven, Connecticut and London: Yale University Press, 2007. Exhibition Catalog.

2. McShine, Kynaston. "Joseph Cornell." New York: Museum of Modern Art, 1980.

3. San Francisco Cinematheque and The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. "Joseph Cornell: Films." 2007. Exhibition Program. (Presented in conjunction with SFMOMA's exhibition of "Joseph Cornell: Navigating the Imagination").

4. Schaffner, Ingrid and Lisa Jacobs. "Julien Levy: Portrait of an Art Gallery." Cambridge, Massachusetts and London: The MIT Press, 1998.

5. Solomon, Deborah. "Utopia Parkway: The Life and Work of Joseph Cornell." New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1997.
Separated Materials:
The Smithsonian Archives of American Art houses the Joseph Cornell papers, 1804-1986, bulk 1939-1972.
Provenance:
The Joseph Cornell Study Center collection was donated to the Smithsonian American Art Museum by Joseph Cornell's sister and brother-in-law, Elizabeth Cornell Benton and John A. Benton, in 1978, which prompted the creation of the Joseph Cornell Study Center. Additional materials were donated in installments by the artist's estate, the Joseph and Robert Cornell Memorial Foundation, from 1985 to 1997. Elizabeth and John A. Benton originally donated 66 linear feet of three-dimensional and non-textual source material and 50 linear feet of books to the Smithsonian Archives of American Art, which were subsequently transferred to the Smithsonian American Art Museum's Joseph Cornell Study Center in 1994 and 1995.
Restrictions:
Access to the collection requires an advanced appointment. Contact collection staff at least two weeks prior to preferred date, at AmericanArtCornellStudy@si.edu.

Series 9: Artifacts and Ephemera, Series 13: Personal Library and Book Collection, and Series 14: Record Album Collection, are still undergoing processing and preservation and may not be available for research use. Record albums are unavailable for playback. Contact collection staff for full lists of publications and record albums.
Rights:
Unpublished materials are protected by copyright. Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from the repository and the copyright holder.
Occupation:
Collagists -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Topic:
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
Assemblage (Art)  Search this
Assemblage artists -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Found objects (Art)  Search this
Works of art  Search this
Celebrities  Search this
Filmmakers -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs -- 1900-1950 -- Photoprints -- Silver gelatin
Photographs -- 1860-1870 -- Black-and-white photoprints -- Silver albumen -- Cartes-de-visite
Photographs -- Daguerreotypes -- 1840-1860
Citation:
Joseph Cornell Study Center collection, 1750-1980, bulk 1930-1972. Joseph Cornell Study Center, Smithsonian American Art Museum.
Identifier:
SAAM.JCSC.1
See more items in:
Joseph Cornell Study Center Collection
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Research and Scholars Center
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/ih7d97fc249-474d-41bf-953d-5305df1e4c06
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-saam-jcsc-1

Morris Louis and Morris Louis Estate papers

Artist:
Louis, Morris, 1912-1962  Search this
Names:
André Emmerich Gallery  Search this
Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden  Search this
Robert Pierce/Films, Inc.  Search this
Bocour, Leonard, 1910-1993  Search this
Brenner, Marcella, 1912-2007  Search this
Faatz, Anita J. (Anita Josephine)  Search this
Frankenthaler, Helen, 1928-2011  Search this
Greenberg, Clement, 1909-1994  Search this
Noland, Kenneth, 1924-2010  Search this
Truitt, Anne, 1921-2004  Search this
Extent:
17.8 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Video recordings
Sound recordings
Interviews
Photographs
Date:
circa 1910s-2007
bulk 1965-2000
Summary:
The Morris Louis and Morris Louis Estate papers measure 17.8 linear feet and date from circa 1912-2007, with the bulk of the material dating from 1965-2000. The collection documents Morris Louis' career as a Color Field painter and founding participant in the Washington Color School, as well as the subsequent administration of his estate by his wife Marcella Brenner. Found within Morris Louis' papers are biographical materials, correspondence, photographs, scattered financial records, notes, writings, printed materials, and a canvas sample. The Morris Louis Estate papers include records of gallery exhibitions, mostly André Emmerich Gallery; artwork inventories; legal records concerning the lawsuit Bernstein v. Brenner; financial records of the sale of Louis' artwork; printed materials; writings about Louis; photographs of exhibition installations and artwork; and project files which include documentation of film projects by Robert Pierce Productions, a catalog raisonne, documentation of PBS documentaries, video recordings of the exhibition "Morris Louis Now", and numerous sound recordings of interviews with artists discussing Morris Louis conducted by Anita Faatz.
Scope and Contents:
The Morris Louis and Morris Louis Estate papers measure 17.8 linear feet and date from circa 1912-2007, with the bulk of the material dating from 1965-2000. The collection documents Morris Louis' career as a Color Field painter and founding participant in the Washington Color School, as well as the subsequent administration of his estate by his wife Marcella Brenner. Found within Morris Louis' papers are biographical materials, correspondence, photographs, scattered financial records, notes, writings, printed materials, and a canvas sample. The Morris Louis Estate papers include records of gallery exhibitions, mostly André Emmerich Gallery; artwork inventories; legal records concerning the lawsuit Bernstein v. Brenner; financial records of the sale of Louis' artwork; printed materials; writings about Louis; photographs of exhibition installations and artwork; and posthumous project files which include documentation of film projects by Robert Pierce Productions, a catalog raisonne, PBS documentaries, video recordings of the exhibition "Morris Louis Now", and numerous sound recordings of interviews with artists, many with transcripts, discussing Morris Louis and conducted by Anita Faatz.

Within the Morris Louis papers (circa 3 linear feet) are scattered biographical materials for Morris Louis and Marcella Brenner. Correspondence is with family friends, artists, and galleries, the bulk of which consists of photocopies. Of note are letters from Helen Frankenthaler, Clement Greenberg, Leonard Bocour, Kenneth Noland, and Anne Truitt. Business records include lists of artwork, receipts for art supplies, and scattered tax records. Six notebooks belonging to Morris Louis contain miscellaneous notes about students, studio rental payments, addresses, travel expenses, and a short list of paintings. There is one notebook of Marcella Brenner's containing notes about expenses and addresses. Also found are printed materials, one canvas sample, and one embossing stamp. Photographs are of Morris Louis, Marcella Brenner, and the Bernstein family.

The majority of the collection (circa 15 linear feet) consists of records created and maintained by Marcella Brenner in the course of managing Louis' estate and posthumous exhibitions and projects. There are numerous gallery exhibition records for many posthumous and retrospective exhibitions between 1965 through 2002, including those held at the Andre Emmerich Gallery, the Hirshhorn Museum, and numerous other U.S. and international galleries and museums. Louis' artwork is documented in highly detailed inventory lists and cards. Legal records document the lawsuit brought by the Bernstein family against Marcella Brenner which began in 1964 and ended in 1970 in favor of Brenner. Financial records document sales.

Printed materials include clippings, exhibition catalogs and announcements, and other miscellaneous materials. Writings include essays about Louis and manuscript copies of the book Trustee for the Human Race: Litigation over the Morris Louis Paintings written by Ruth S. Blau under contract for Marcella Brenner. Photographs are primarily of artwork depicted in exhibition installations. Project files are found for several posthumous documentary film projects and a catalog raisonne, and include a series of audio recordings of interviews of 27 artists conducted by Anita Faatz in 1970-1971. Artists interviewed include Clement Greenberg, Leonard Bocour, Andre Emmerich, Helen Frankenthaler, Kenneth Noland, and many others.
Arrangement:
This collection is arranged as 2 series.

Missing Title

Series 1: Morris Louis Papers, circa 1910s-1998 (2.9 linear feet; Boxes 1-3)

Series 2: Morris Louis Estate Papers, 1947-2007 (14.9 linear feet; Boxes 3-19, OV 20)
Biographical / Historical:
Morris Louis (1912-1962) was one of the earliest American Color Field painters, and, along with other Washington, D.C., painters, formed the movement known as the Washington Color School.

Born in Baltimore, M.D., to Russian immigrants Louis Bernstein and Cecelia Luckman, Morris Louis attended the Maryland Institute of Fine and Applied Arts from 1927-1932 and served as president of the Baltimore Artists' Association in 1935. During the Depression, he worked in New York City on the steering committee of the Easel Division of the Federal Arts Projects of the Works Project Administration (WPA). He exhibited Broken Bridge at the WPA Pavilion of the New York World's Fair in 1939.

In 1947, Louis married Marcella (Siegel) Brenner, and moved to Silver Spring, Maryland, a close suburb of Washington, D.C., where he taught private art classes and continued painting, using his apartment bedroom as a studio. In 1948, Louis participated in the Maryland Artists, 16th Annual Exhibition at the Baltimore Museum of Art, and began using Leonard Bocour's Magna acrylic paint, which he would use exclusively for the rest of his painting career.

In 1952, Morris Louis and Marcella Brenner moved to Washington, D.C. and set up a studio in his home where he would complete his most notable canvases. He began teaching at the Washington Workshop Center for the Arts and met artist Kenneth Noland who was also exploring Color Field painting. Through Noland, Louis met art critic Clement Greenberg in 1953, and they visited artist studios in New York City to study abstract expressionist works, including those by Helen Frankenthaler, Jackson Pollock, and Franz Kline. Louis and Noland were greatly influenced by Frankenthaler's staining technique, and Louis began experimenting with staining methods upon his return to Washington. Clement Greenberg became a life-long advocate for Louis and, in 1954, included Louis in the seminal group exhibition, "Emerging Talent," organized by Greenberg for the Kootz Gallery. In 1960, Andre Emmerich became his dealer in the United States and Lawrence Rubin represented him in Paris.

Using thinned Magna paint and unstretched, unprimed canvases, Louis created his works by rotating the canvas as the paint moved across and soaked in. Between 1958 and 1962 Louis produced three major series of paintings—the Veils, the Unfurleds, and the Stripes. Each series numbered more than one hundred canvases. Louis never documented his exact painting methods and would not allow anyone to watch him work, including his wife. His own worst critic, Louis destroyed many of his paintings that did meet his standards, including a large number of his earliest works and many created between 1954 and 1957. He also designated numerous surviving works for destruction prior to his death.

Louis was diagnosed with lung cancer on July 1, 1962 and died a few months later. The Andre Emmerich Gallery held a previously scheduled exhibition as planned, a month following Louis' death, as a memorial exhibition.
Related Materials:
Also found at the Archives of American Art are the Marcella Brenner journals, 1962-2000. The Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) also holds papers of Morris Louis and the Morris Louis Estate in their Morris Louis Study Collection.
Provenance:
The Morris Louis and Morris Louis Estate papers were donated by Marcella Brenner in several installments in 1976, 1986, and 1988. Subsequent donations in 2009 and 2012 were donated by Marcella Brenner via Ann M. Garfinkle, Executor. The Anita Faatz interviews were donated in 1976 by Marcella Brenner.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Washington, D.C. Research Center. Many of the audio recordings and transcripts of interviews with 26 artists conducted by Anita Faatz in 1970-1971 are access restricted and written permission is required from the person interviewed. Please contact reference services for more information. Any use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Occupation:
Painters -- United States  Search this
Topic:
Transcripts  Search this
Washington Color School (Group of artists)  Search this
Law and art -- United States  Search this
Color-field painting  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century  Search this
Abstract expressionism  Search this
Genre/Form:
Video recordings
Sound recordings
Interviews
Photographs
Citation:
Morris Louis and Morris Louis Estate Papers, circa 1910s-2007, bulk 1965-2000. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.louimorr
See more items in:
Morris Louis and Morris Louis Estate papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9ecc509be-66ed-4df5-9632-537bc9cf40ed
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-louimorr
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Churchhill Lathrop

Interviewee:
Lathrop, Churchill P.  Search this
Interviewer:
Brown, Robert F.  Search this
Names:
Dartmouth College -- Faculty -- Interviews  Search this
Dartmouth College. Museum  Search this
Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum  Search this
Orozco, José Clemente, 1883-1949  Search this
Extent:
10 Items (sound files, digital, wav file)
121 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1982 Feb. 25-1983 Jan. 26
Scope and Contents:
An interview with Churchill Lathrop conducted 1982 Feb. 25-1983 Jan. 26, by Robert Brown, for the Archives of American Art.
Lathrop discusses his childhood in Montclair, N.J.; college at Rutgers; various jobs in the 1920s; attending Princeton University where he received his M.A. in art history and his teachers there, including Charles Rufus Morey and Frank Jewett Mather. He reviews his tenure at Dartmouth, discussing work with Artemas Packard, involvement with Dartmouth alumnus Nelson Rockefeller and his mother, Abby Aldrich Rockefeller in building a collection of modern art at Dartmouth, visiting artist José Clemente Orozco and his mural painted for Baker Library, his directorship of the Dartmouth art galleries and work in planning the Hopkins Art Center, and Mrs. Aileen Osborn Webb's attempts to establish a graduate level design school at Dartmouth in the 1940s. He recalls acquaintances and colleagues, including Alfred Stieglitz, Adelbert Ames, A. Conger Goodyear, Dorothy Miller, Alfred Barr, Jr. and others at the Museum of Modern Art, and Hilla Rebay and others involved in the Guggenheim Museum of Non-Objective Paintings.
Biographical / Historical:
Churchill P. Lathrop (1900-1995) was an art historian at Dartmouth College, Hanover, N.H. Full name Churchill Pierce Lathrop, but often known as Jerry Lathrop. Lathrop joined the Art Department at Dartmouth in 1928, serving as chair 1932-1936, 1940-1948, and 1962-1965, before retiring in 1966. In addition to teaching, Lathrop was director of the college's art galleries, custodian of Dartmouth's art collections, and founder of its Sherman Art Library.
General:
Originally recorded on 5 sound cassettes. Reformatted in 2010 as 10 digital wav files. Duration is 7 hrs., 17 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.
Occupation:
Art historians -- United States -- Interviews  Search this
Topic:
Art in universities and colleges  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.lathro82
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw960253e13-8858-451f-8a40-8e477c4a9c6c
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-lathro82
Online Media:

Lucy R. Lippard papers

Creator:
Lippard, Lucy R.  Search this
Names:
Addison Gallery of American Art  Search this
Alliance for Cultural Democracy  Search this
Art Workers Coalition  Search this
Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Political Art Documentation/Distribution (Organization)  Search this
Printed Matter, Inc.  Search this
Studio International (Firm)  Search this
University of Colorado -- Faculty  Search this
Women's Caucus for Art  Search this
Andre, Carl, 1935-  Search this
Chicago, Judy, 1939-  Search this
Darboven, Hanne  Search this
Edelson, Mary Beth  Search this
Hammond, Harmony  Search this
Henes, Donna  Search this
Johnson, Ray, 1927-  Search this
Judd, Donald, 1928-  Search this
LeWitt, Sol, 1928-2007  Search this
Pearson, Henry, 1914-2006  Search this
Stevens, May  Search this
Extent:
70.5 Linear feet
0.454 Gigabytes
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Gigabytes
Sound recordings
Interviews
Photographs
Date:
1930s-2010
bulk 1960-1990
Summary:
The papers of New York and New Mexico writer, art critic, and curator, Lucy R. Lippard, measure 70.5 linear feet and 0.454 GB and date from the 1930s to 2007, with the bulk of the material dating from the 1960s to the 1990s. Over half of the collection consists of correspondence files documenting Lippard's professional relationships with artists, writers, galleries, art institutions, and political organizations, and her interest in conceptual and minimalist art, feminism and political activism. Also found are Lippard's notes and writings including sound recordings and interviews, teaching and exhibition files, printed and digital material, several works of art, and photographs of artwork and artists. Scattered throughout the collection are a small number of records concerning Lippard's personal life. An addition of 3.0 linear feet donated 2015 includes subject files on feminist and conceptual art as well as land use, development, and local politics and history in New Mexico.

There is a 17.0 linear foot unprocessed addition to this collection donated in 2015 and 2021 that incudes research files (press clippings, notes, correspondence, ephemera) related to the publications 'Lure of the Local' and 'Undermining' are a significant portion. In addition there are approximetley 50 notebooks ranging from 1965-1996, containing notes and daily tasks. Printed material and ephemera includes promotional materials for talks and public engagements, as well as press clippings of reviews and other news items featuring Lippard. Another significant portion of the addition is labeled "miscellaneous professional correspondence."Materials date from circa 1965-2010.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of New York and New Mexico writer, art critic, and curator, Lucy R. Lippard, measure 70.5 linear feet and 0.454 GB and date from the 1930s to 2007, with the bulk of the material dating from the 1960s to the 1990s. Over half of the collection consists of correspondence files documenting Lippard's professional relationships with artists, writers, galleries, art institutions, and political organizations, and her interest in conceptual and minimalist art, feminism and political activism. Also found are Lippard's notes and writings including sound recordings and interviews, teaching and exhibition files, printed and digital material, several works of art, and photographs of artwork and artists. Scattered throughout the collection are a small number of records concerning Lippard's personal life. An addition of 3.0 linear feet donated 2015 includes subject files on feminist and conceptual art as well as land use, development, and local politics and history in New Mexico.

A small amount of biographical material comprises resumes and an address book.

Correspondence files document all aspects of Lippard's professional life including her relationships with artists such as Carl Andre, Judy Chicago, Hanne Darboven, Ray Johnson, Sol LeWitt, and Henry Pearson; feminist artists including Mary Beth Edelson, Harmony Hammond, Donna Henes, and May Stevens; political and art-related activist groups such as Alliance for Cultural Democracy, Art Workers Coalition, Political Art Documentation/Distribution, Printed Matter, and Women's Caucus for Art; galleries and museums including Addison Gallery of American Art and the Museum of Modern Art, and publishers including Art International and Art Forum. The series also traces the development of Lippard's involvement in activist causes including censorship and the rights of artists, Central America and the impact of U.S. policy on the region, and equality and reproductive rights for women, as well as her interest in conceptual and minimalist art. The series includes scattered artwork and photographs of artists.

Writings are primarily by Lippard and include correspondence, manuscript drafts, extensive notes, and publication records for some of her best-known books such as The Graphic Work of Philip Evergood (1966), Six Years: The Dematerialization of the Art Object (1973), Eva Hesse (1976), Ad Reinhardt (1985), and Mixed Blessings: New Art in a Multicultural America (1990), as well as essays for publications such as Art Forum and Studio International and contributions to exhibition catalogs. Also found are edited transcripts from conferences, symposia and interviews conducted by and of Lippard, some audio recordings of interviews and symposia, including an interview with Donald Judd, and notes and typescripts for lectures and speeches.

A small number of files document Lippard's teaching work during the 1970s and 1980s, primarily at the University of Colorado, Boulder where she taught several courses and seminars.

Exhibition files document Lippard's involvement with exhibitions she helped to organize or curate such as A Different War: Vietnam in Art (1989-1991) 557,087 and 955,000 (1969, 1970), 2,972, 453 (1971) c.7,500 (1973-1974) and those for which she wrote catalog contributions.

Printed material includes a collection of articles written by Lippard and a small amount of material concerning events, such as speaking engagements, in which Lippard was involved. Other printed material reflects Lippard's wide range of artistic, political and activist interests and documents exhibitions and performances and the activities of art-related and political groups. Material includes many exhibition catalogs, announcements, invitations, printed posters, news clippings, journal articles, brochures, pamphlets and other publications.

Artwork includes sixteen items by unidentified artists, including two by children. Photographs consist primarily of photographs of works of art in addition to a small number of photos of exhibition installations.

There is a 17.0 linear foot unprocessed addition to this collection donated in 2015 and 2021 that incudes research files (press clippings, notes, correspondence, ephemera) related to the publications 'Lure of the Local' and 'Undermining' are a significant portion. In addition there are approximetley 50 notebooks ranging from 1965-1996, containing notes and daily tasks. Printed material and ephemera includes promotional materials for talks and public engagements, as well as press clippings of reviews and other news items featuring Lippard. Another significant portion of the addition is labeled "miscellaneous professional correspondence."Materials date from circa 1965-2010.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as nine series:

Missing Title

Series 1: Biographical Material, circa 1960s-circa 1980s (Box 1; 2 folders)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1950s-2006 (Boxes 1-28, 51, OVs 54-63; 28.8 linear feet)

Series 3: Writings, 1930s-1990s (Boxes 28-41, 51-52, OVs 64-66; 13.24 linear feet, ER01; 0.454 GB)

Series 4: Teaching Files, 1966-1993 (Boxes 41, 52; 0.76 linear feet)

Series 5: Exhibitions, 1960s-1990s (Boxes 42-45, 52, OVs 67-68; 4.2 linear feet)

Series 6: Printed Material, 1940s-2007 (Boxes 45-49, 52, OVs 69-77; 5.3 linear feet)

Series 7: Artwork and Ephemera, circa 1960s-circa 1990s (Boxes 50, 53; 4 folders)

Series 8: Photographs, 1950s-circa 1990s (Boxes 50, 53, OV 71; 1.0 linear foot)

Series 9: Unprocessed Addition, circa 1965-2010, (Boxes 78-94; 17.0 linear feet)
Biographical / Historical:
New York and New Mexico writer and art critic, Lucy R. Lippard, is the curator of numerous exhibitions and the author of over twenty-four books and other writings that trace the emergence of minimalist and conceptual art and document Lippard's commitment to feminism and political activism.

Born in New York City in 1937, Lippard earned a B.A. from Smith College in 1958 and an M.A. in 1962 from New York University's Institute of Fine Arts. In the 1960s she began writing art criticism for the journals Art International and Artforum. In 1966 she curated the landmark exhibition Eccentric Abstraction at the Fischbach Gallery in New York City. Lippard then curated the first of four defining conceptual art exhibitions that became known as her "numbers" shows, each titled after the populations of the cities in which they took place, with catalogs in the form of a set of 10 x 15 cm index cards. Opening at the Seattle Art Museum in 1969, 557,087 was followed by 955,000 in Vancouver, Canada, a few months later. 2,972,453 was held at the Centro de Arte y Comunicacíon in Buenos Aires in 1971 and c.7500 opened in Valencia, California, in 1973-1974 before traveling to several other venues in the United States and Europe.

Lippard's first book, The Graphic Work of Philip Evergood was published in 1966, followed by Pop Art the same year, and a collection of her early essays, Changing, in 1971. Six Years: The Dematerialization of the Art Object (1973) and From the Center: Feminist Essays on Women's Art (1976) documented the emergence of conceptual art and the early years of feminist art respectively. In 1976 Lippard published her seminal book on the life and work of Eva Hesse.

Between 1977 and 1978 Lippard lived on a farm in Devon, England, and worked on a novel, The First Stone, about the role of politics in the lives of three generations of women. During her walks across the English countryside she became interested in landscape art and conceived of her book Overlay: Contemporary Art and the Art of Prehistory which was subsequently published in 1983. Other books include Get the Message?: A Decade Of Art For Social Change (1984), Ad Reinhardt (1985), and Mixed Blessings: New Art in a Multicultural America (1990). Lippard has also written regular columns on art and politics for the Village Voice, In These Times and Z Magazine, and has been a contributing editor of Art in America.

Lippard was radicalized during a trip to Argentina in 1968 when she was invited to be a juror at the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in Buenos Aires. On her return to the United States she became heavily involved in anti-war activities and the Art Workers Coalition. She is a co-founder of several feminist and artist organizations including the feminist collective Heresies, which produced Heresies: A Feminist Journal on Art and Politics from 1977-1992, Ad Hoc Women Artists, Alliance for Cultural Democracy, Artists Call Against U.S. Intervention in Central America, Women's Action Coalition, and Women's Art Registry. In 1976 she was a founder of Printed Matter, a New York nonprofit dedicated to producing artists' publications. She also worked closely with Franklin Furnace, an artist-run space devoted to the promotion of artists' books, installation art, and video and performance art, and served on the organization's International Committee.

Lippard has been a visiting professor at the School of Visual Arts, the University of Colorado, Boulder, and the University of Queensland, Australia, and was Eminent Artist in Residence at the University of Wyoming Department of Art in 2015. She has received honorary doctorates in fine arts from Maine College of Art, the Massachusetts College of Art, Moore College of Art, San Francisco Art Institute, and others, and awards including a Guggenheim Fellowship, two National Endowment for the Arts grants in criticism, the Smith College Medal, the ArtTable Award for Distinguished Service to the Visual Arts, and the Bard College Center for Curatorial Studies Award for Excellence.

Lippard has lived in New Mexico since 1992 and works as a freelance writer and speaker.
Related Materials:
Also found in the Archives of American Art is an oral history interview with Lucy Lippard conducted in 2011 March 15, by Sue Heinemann, for the Archives of American Art's Elizabeth Murray Oral History of Women in the Visual Arts project, funded by a grant from the A G Foundation.
Provenance:
Lucy R. Lippard donated her papers in several increments between 1972-1995, 2006, 2015 and 2021.
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 access copy requires advance notice. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Occupation:
Curators -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Authors -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Art critics -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Topic:
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Artists -- Political activity  Search this
Art criticism  Search this
Feminism and art  Search this
Women authors  Search this
Women art critics  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century  Search this
Conceptual art  Search this
Minimal art  Search this
Women museum curators  Search this
Women educators  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Photographs
Citation:
Lucy R. Lippard papers, 1930s-2007, bulk 1960s-1990s. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.lipplucy
See more items in:
Lucy R. Lippard papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9101c6a69-dde9-42ed-94cc-d03650c249ed
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-lipplucy
Online Media:

Esther McCoy papers

Creator:
McCoy, Esther  Search this
Names:
Historic American Buildings Survey  Search this
Society of Architectural Historians  Search this
University of California, Los Angeles. School of Architecture and Urban Planning  Search this
Ain, Gregory, 1908-1988  Search this
Barragán, Luis, 1902-  Search this
Bradbury, Ray, 1920-2012  Search this
Davidson, Julius Ralph, b. 1889  Search this
Dreiser, Theodore, 1871-1945  Search this
Ellwood, Craig  Search this
Gill, Irving, 1870-1936  Search this
Grotz, Dorothy  Search this
Hollein, Hans, 1934-2014  Search this
Jones, A. Quincy (Archie Quincy), 1913-1979  Search this
Maybeck, Bernard R.  Search this
Neutra, Richard Joseph, 1892-1970  Search this
O'Gorman, Juan, 1905-  Search this
Rand, Marvin  Search this
Schindler, R. M. (Rudolph M.), 1887-1953  Search this
Shulman, Julius  Search this
Soriano, Rafael, 1920-  Search this
Watanabe, Makoto  Search this
Worlidge, T. (Thomas), 1700-1766  Search this
Extent:
44 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Diaries
Etchings
Photographs
Sound recordings
Interviews
Video recordings
Slides (photographs)
Transcripts
Drawings
Memoirs
Date:
circa 1876-1990
bulk 1938-1989
Summary:
The papers of Southern California architectural historian, critic, and writer Esther McCoy measure 44.0 linear feet and date from 1876 to 1990 (bulk 1938-1989). McCoy was interested in both Italian and Mexican architecture as well as the folk art and crafts of Mexico and South America. The collection documents McCoy's career, as well as her family and personal life through biographical material, extensive correspondence, personal and professional writings, project files, Southern California architects' files, clippings and other printed material, a large collection of photographs and slides, and taped interviews of Southern California modern architects.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of Southern California architectural historian, critic, and writer Esther McCoy measure 44.0 linear feet and date from 1876 to 1990 (bulk 1938-1989). McCoy was interested in both Italian and Mexican architecture as well as the folk art and crafts of Mexico and South America. The collection documents McCoy's career, as well as her family and personal life through biographical material, extensive correspondence, personal and professional writings, project files, Southern California architects' files, clippings and other printed material, a large collection of photographs and slides, and taped interviews of Southern California modern architects.

Biographical and family material consists of awards, resumes, identification documents, and other documentation of McCoy's personal life. Included are a transcript of a 1984 interview of McCoy by Makoto Watanabe and material relating to her friend, Theodore Dreiser.

Correspondence focuses on her personal relationships with family, friends, and lovers, and general correspondence relating primarily to her work as a writer. McCoy's personal correspondence is valuable to researchers who are interested in her personal life, her struggles as a young writer, and the way in which her family, friends, lovers, mentors, and colleagues helped to shape her work and career. As documented in this correspondence, her life offers a glimpse into twentieth-century American social and political history, especially the radical leftist movements of the 1920s and 1930s. Researchers interested in the roots of feminism in the United States should also find these papers useful in documenting the life of a creative and productive woman who was successful in a field then almost entirely dominated by men. Correspondents of note include her husband Berkeley Tobey, lovers Geoffrey Eaton and Albert Robert, writers Ray Bradbury and Theodore Dreiser, and artists and architects, such as Dorothy Grotz, Craig Ellwood, A. Quincy Jones, Hans Hollein, and J. R. Davidson. General correspondence is primarily with researchers, professors, architects, publishers, and professional organizations.

Personal writings include McCoy's diaries, notebooks, and memoirs, and writings by others including friends, lovers, and colleagues. Also included are drafts of McCoy's fictional works, both published and unpublished, including short stories, teleplays, and novels.

The collection contains in-depth documentation of McCoy's pioneering study of the modernist work of twentieth-century architects in Southern California. The bulk of her papers consist of her writing files for books, exhibition catalogs, articles, and lectures on architecture. Because many of the architects about whom McCoy wrote were her contemporaries, she developed personal relationships with several of them through her research and writing. Her writing files include drafts, notes, research material, photographs, and correspondence. McCoy also traveled extensively, particularly in Italy and Mexico, and wrote about architecture, craft, and culture in those countries. Project files document McCoy's other activities related to architectural history, such preservation projects, juries, grants, the Dodge House Preservation Campaign and related film project, her work for the Society of Architectural Historians and the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS), and her work at the UCLA School of Architecture and Urban Planning, compiling a slide library and cataloging the Richard Neutra's papers. McCoy also maintained architect files which may contain correspondence, notes, photographs, research material, interview transcripts, about architects and their works. Among these extensive records, the files documenting the careers of R. M. Schindler, Irving Gill, Richard Neutra, and Juan O'Gorman are particularly rich.

Printed material in this collection documents McCoy's career as well as her personal interests. Included are books, clippings, magazines, newsletters, press releases, as well as publications arranged by subject such as architecture, art, Italy, and Mexico. McCoy also collected literary and leftist publications. The small amount of artwork in this collection consists of artwork sent to her by friends, including a drawing of her by Esther Rollo and etchings by various artists including Thomas Worlidge.

There are personal photographs of family and friends and of McCoy at different times in her life, as well as photographs gathered during the course of her research on architecture. Found here are photographs of architects and their works, including a large number depicting the work of Gregory Ain, Luis Barragan, J. R. Davidson, Irving Gill, Bernard Maybeck, Juan O'Gorman, R. M. Schindler, and Raphael Soriano. Many of these photographs were taken by notable architectural photographers Julius Shulman and Marvin Rand. Also found are photographs of architecture designed for the Case Study House program of Arts & Architecture magazine; exhibition photographs, primarily for the exhibition "Ten Italian Architects" in 1967; and other research photographs primarily documenting architecture and craft in other countries and the history of architecture in California. This series also includes approximately 3,600 slides of architecture.

Audio and video recordings include a videocassette of McCoy's 80th birthday party and 55 taped interviews with architects, people associated with architectural projects, and artists.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into 10 series:

Missing Title

Series 1: Biographical and Family Material, 1881-1989 (boxes 1, 48; 0.6 linear feet)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1896-1989 (boxes 1-6, 4.9 linear feet)

Series 3: Personal Writings, 1919-1989 (boxes 6-14; 8.1 linear feet)

Series 4: Architectural Writings, 1908-1990 (boxes 14-24, 42, 49, 50; 10.2 linear feet)

Series 5: Projects, circa 1953-1988 (boxes 24-26, 47, FC 53-56; 2.5 linear feet)

Series 6: Architect Files, 1912-1990 (boxes 26-28, 42; 2.2 linear feet)

Series 7: Printed Material, circa 1885-1990 (boxes 28-31, 42; 2.9 linear feet)

Series 8: Artwork, 1924-1967, undated (box 31; 0.4 linear feet)

Series 9: Photographs and Slides, circa 1876-1989 (boxes 31-38, 41-46, 51; 8.3 linear feet)

Series 10: Audio and Video Recordings, 1930-1984 (boxes 38-40, 47; 2.5 linear feet)
Biographical Note:
Esther McCoy (1904-1989) is remembered best for her pioneering work as an architectural historian, critic, and proponent of Southern California modern architecture of the early to mid-twentieth century. McCoy was interested in both Italian and Mexican architecture as well as the folk art and crafts of Mexico and South America. Although her professional interests ranged from writing fiction to studying the folk architecture and crafts of Mexico, McCoy achieved her most notable success for her numerous articles, books, and exhibitions about Southern California architecture and the architects associated with the modernist movement.

Born in Arkansas in 1904, Esther McCoy grew up in Kansas and attended various schools in the Midwest. In 1926 she left the University of Michigan to launch a writing career in New York, where she moved in avant-garde literary circles and conducted research for Theodore Dreiser. She began writing fiction in New York and continued to write after moving to Los Angeles in 1932, working on short stories, novels, and screenplays. She published numerous short stories between 1929 and 1962, with works appearing in the New Yorker, Harper's Bazaar, and university quarterlies. Her short story, "The Cape," was reprinted in Best Short Stories of 1950. Many of the novels that she wrote from the mid-1960s through the 1980s were related thematically to architects and architecture.

During the late 1920s and throughout the 1930s, McCoy participated in the politically radical movements of the period and wrote for leftist publications. Her interest in the lowcost housing projects of modern architects was prompted by one of her articles about slums for Epic News. During World War II she entered a training program for engineering draftsmen at Douglas Aircraft and in 1944 was hired as an architectural draftsman for the architect R.M. Schindler. As she became increasingly interested in modern architecture and design, she combined her two major career interests and began to focus her energies on architectural research, writing, and criticism. Her first article on architecture, "Schindler: Space Architect," was published in 1945 in the journal Direction.

McCoy began writing about architecture in earnest in 1950 as a free-lance contributor to the Los Angeles Times. From then until her death in 1989, she wrote prolifically for Arts & Architecture magazine, Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Herald Examiner, Architectural Record, L'Architectura, Zodiac (Italy), Progressive Architecture, Lotus (Italy), and Architectural Forum. In addition to her numerous articles, McCoy wrote several books on Southern California modern architecture and architects. Her first major work, Five California Architects, published in 1960, is now recognized as a classic work in modern architectural history. It promoted a serious study of modern architecture in Southern California and introduced to the world several leading California architects and their work: Bernard Maybeck, Irving Gill, Charles and Henry Greene, and R.M. Schindler. That same year, she published another important book focusing on the work of the California architect Richard Neutra. Other books by McCoy include Modern California Houses: Case Study Houses (1962), Craig Ellwood (1968), Vienna to Los Angeles: Two Journeys (1979), and The Second Generation (1984).

In addition to these books, McCoy organized and wrote catalogs for several significant exhibitions focusing on contemporary architects. Her first was the R.M. Schindler Retrospective, a 1954 exhibition at the Landau Art Gallery in Los Angeles. Her other exhibitions and accompanying catalogs include Roots of California Contemporary Architecture, 1956, Los Angeles Municipal Art Department; Felix Candela, 1957, University of Southern California, Los Angeles; Irving Gill, 1958, Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Juan O'Gorman, 1964, San Fernando Valley State College; and Ten Italian Architects, 1967, Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Moreover, McCoy contributed numerous essays to other exhibition catalogs and publications, lectured at the University of Southern California, participated in preservation projects, organized tours for the Society of Architectural Historians, and contributed to a number of documentary films. Her energy and interests also led her to catalog and transcribe Richard Neutra's papers at the University of California Los Angeles Archives.

McCoy received national recognition from the American Institute of Architects for her seminal and prolific work in the field of Southern California modern architectural history and criticism. Her interests, however, were not exclusively bound to California. She traveled the world and was interested in both Italian and Mexican architecture as well as the folk art and crafts of Mexico and South America. She made five extended trips to Italy during the 1950s and 1960s, publishing regularly about the architecture there and curating the exhibition Ten Italian Architects. She was a contributing editor to two Italian journals, Zodiac and Lotus, and was awarded the Star of Order of Solidarity in 1960 by the Republic of Italy for her research and writing.

Esther McCoy died of emphysema on December 30, 1989, at the age of eighty-five. Her last contribution was an essay for the exhibition catalog Blueprints for Modern Living: History and Legacy of the Case Study House. The show opened at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles one month before her death.

Missing Title

1904 -- Born November 18 in Horatio, Arkansas. Raised in Kansas.

1920 -- Attended preparatory school at Central College for Women, Lexington, Missouri.

1922-1925 -- College education: Baker University, Baldwin City, Kansas; University of Arkansas, Fayetteville; Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri; University of Michigan.

1924 -- Visited Theodore Dreiser in Michigan.

1926-1938 -- Began writing in New York City.

1926-1938 -- Researched and read for Theodore Dreiser.

1926-1938 -- Worked for editorial offices and publishers.

1926-1938 -- Traveled to write in Paris (1928), Key West, Florida (1930), and Los Angeles, California (1932-1935).

1938 -- Moved to Santa Monica, California.

1941 -- Married Berkeley Greene Tobey.

1942-1944 -- Employed as engineering draftsman at Douglas Aircraft.

1944-1947 -- Worked as architectural draftsman for R.M. Schindler.

1945 -- Began architectural writing career.

1950 -- Wrote script for film Architecture West.

1950 -- Joined editorial board of Arts & Architecture.

1950-1968 -- Worked as free-lance writer for the Los Angeles Times.

1951-1955 -- Traveled to, researched, and wrote about Mexico and Mexican art and architecture.

1954 -- R.M. Schindler Retrospective exhibition at the Landau Art Gallery, Los Angeles.

1956 -- Roots of California Contemporary Architecture exhibition, Los Angeles Municipal Art Department.

1957 -- Felix Candela exhibition, University of Southern California, Los Angeles.

1958 -- Irving Gill exhibition, Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Traveled to Italy.

1959-1968 -- Contributing editor to Italian periodicals Zodiac and Lotus.

1960 -- Five California Architects (New York: Reinhold).

1960 -- Richard Neutra (New York: G. Braziller).

1960 -- Awarded Star of Order of Solidarity by the Republic of Italy for reporting on arts and crafts in Italy.

1962 -- Death of Berkeley Greene Tobey.

1962 -- Modern California Houses: Case Study Houses (New York: Reinhold) (reprinted as Case Study Houses, Los Angeles: Hennessey and Ingalls, 1978).

1963 -- Resident Fellow at Huntington Hartford Foundation.

1964 -- Juan O'Gorman exhibition, San Fernando Valley State College, Northridge, Calif.

1965 -- Consultant for the California Arts Commission.

1965-1966 -- Wrote and produced the film Dodge House.

1965-1968 -- Lecturer at University of California at Los Angeles, School of Architecture and Urban Planning.

1966 -- Resident Fellow at MacDowell Colony, New Hampshire.

1967 -- Ten Italian Architects exhibition, Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

1967 -- Honorary Associate of the Southern California Chapter of the American Institute of Architects.

1967 -- Regents' Lecturer at University of California, Santa Barbara.

1968 -- Craig Ellwood (New York: Walker).

1968 -- Distinguished Service Citation from the California Council of AIA.

1969-1970 -- Lecturer at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

1969-1989 -- Contributing editor of Progressive Architecture.

1971-1978 -- Graham Foundation Grants.

1974 -- Regents' Lecturer at the University of California,Santa Cruz.

1979 -- Vienna to Los Angeles: Two Journeys (Santa Monica, Calif.: Arts & Architecture Press).

1979 -- Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship.

1981 -- Los Angeles Chapter Women's Architectural League Honorary Member.

1982 -- Los Angeles County Museum of Art's Modern and Contemporary Art Council Award for Distinguished Achievement.

1983 -- Home Sweet Home: The California Ranch House exhibition at California State University.

1984 -- The Second Generation (Salt Lake City: Peregrine Smith Books).

1985 -- American Institute of Architects, Institute Honor.

1986 -- High Styles exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art.

1987 -- Vesta Award for outstanding scholarship.

1989 -- Award from the Historical Society of Southern California.

1989 -- Award from the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs.

1989 -- Blueprints for Modern Living: History and Legacy of the Case Study House exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Died in Santa Monica, California, December 30.
Related Material:
Also in the Archives of American Art are eight sound cassettes of a transcribed interview with Esther McCoy conducted by Joseph Giovannini, June 8-November 14, 1987.
Provenance:
The collection was given to the Archives of American Art by Esther McCoy in 1986. Before her death in 1989, McCoy assisted in the organization and identification of the papers. Original pre-print film elements for Dodge House 1916 were donated to the Archives of American Art by the Academy Film Archive in 2018.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment. Use of audiovisual recordings without access copies requires advance notice.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Occupation:
Architectural historians -- California  Search this
Art critics -- California  Search this
Topic:
Architecture, Modern -- 20th century -- Mexico  Search this
Architects -- Italy  Search this
Architecture, Domestic -- California  Search this
Authors -- California  Search this
Architecture, Modern -- 20th century -- California  Search this
Architecture, Modern -- 20th century -- Europe  Search this
Architects -- California  Search this
Feminism and art  Search this
Latino and Latin American artists  Search this
Genre/Form:
Diaries
Etchings
Photographs
Sound recordings
Interviews
Video recordings
Slides (photographs)
Transcripts
Drawings
Memoirs
Citation:
Esther McCoy papers, circa 1876-1990, bulk 1938-1989. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.mccoesth
See more items in:
Esther McCoy papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw93ee58e3b-f2fc-4d98-acf9-de6f76bfed63
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-mccoesth
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Cundo Bermúdez

Interviewee:
Bermúdez, Cundo, 1914-2008  Search this
Interviewer:
Martínez, Juan A.  Search this
Extent:
2 Items (sound cassettes, analog.)
33 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1997 December 13
Scope and Contents:
An interview with Cundo Bermúdez conducted 1997 December 13, by Juan A. Martínez, in Bermudez's home/studio, Miami, Florida, for the Archives of American Art.
Biographical / Historical:
Cundo Bermúdez (1914-2008) was a Cuban American painter. Born in Havana, 1914.
General:
Originally recorded 2 sound cassettes. Reformatted in 2010 as 3 digital wav files. Duration is 1 hr., 45 min.
Poor sound quality.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics, and administrators.
Topic:
Painters -- Florida -- Miami -- Interviews  Search this
Artists -- Florida -- Miami -- Interviews  Search this
Expatriate artists -- Florida -- Miami -- Interviews  Search this
Artists -- Cuba -- Interviews  Search this
Latino and Latin American artists  Search this
Cuban American art  Search this
Cuban American artists  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- Florida -- Miami  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.bermud97
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw973b06af3-50fd-4bde-aadb-d8d78ac83cd8
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-bermud97
Online Media:

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