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Perry Townsend Rathbone papers

Creator:
Rathbone, Perry Townsend, 1911-2000  Search this
Names:
Allied Forces. Supreme Headquarters. Monuments, Fine Arts and Archives Section  Search this
Christie, Manson & Woods International Inc.  Search this
City Art Museum of St. Louis  Search this
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston  Search this
Beckmann, Max, 1884-1950  Search this
Faison, S. Lane (Samson Lane), 1907-2006  Search this
Gonzalez, Xavier, 1898-1993  Search this
Howe, Thomas Carr, 1904-1994  Search this
Moore, Lamont  Search this
Parkhurst, Charles  Search this
Ritchie, Andrew Carnduff  Search this
Sabersky, Jane, 1911-1983  Search this
Stout, George L. (George Leslie)  Search this
Swarzenski, Hanns, 1903-1985  Search this
Valentin, Curt, 1902-1954  Search this
Valentiner, Wilhelm Reinhold, 1880-1958  Search this
Willard, Marian, 1904-  Search this
Wittmann, Otto, 1911-2001  Search this
Extent:
4.3 Linear feet (5 boxes, 1 OV)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Transcripts
Photographs
Interviews
Date:
1929-1985
Summary:
The papers of museum director Perry Townsend Rathbone measure 4.3 linear feet and date from 1929 to 1985. The papers document Rathbone's career as museum director of the City Art Museum of St. Louis and the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, and his later work with Christie's New York office. Found within the papers are biographical materials, correspondence with friends and colleagues, writings, professional and project files, printed materials, and photographs, mostly of exhibitions.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of museum director Perry Townsend Rathbone measure 4.3 linear feet and date from 1929 to 1985. The papers document Rathbone's career as museum director of the City Art Museum of St. Louis and the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, and his later work with Christie's New York office. Found within the papers are biographical materials, correspondence with friends and colleagues, writings, professional and project files, printed materials, and photographs, mostly of exhibitions.

Biographical materials contain curriculum vitae, biographical sketches, citations for honorary degrees and for Rathbone's appointment as Chevalier of the French Legion of Honor, a passport, a transcript of an interview with Rathbone and articles written by others about Rathbone, including one by S. Lane Faison.

Correspondence is with Rathbone's friends and colleagues. Notable correspondents include Max Beckmann, Xavier Gonzalez, Hanns Swarzenski, Curt Valentin, Jane Sabersky, William R. Valentiner, and Marian Willard, among others. Rathbone knew several art historians and conservators who served in the U.S. Army as members of the Monuments, Fine Arts and Archives Section, also known as the Monuments Men. Correspondence with these colleagues is arranged together as a subseries and includes correspondence with S. Lane Faison, Thomas Carr Howe, Lamont Moore, Charles Parkhurst, Andrew Ritchie, George Leslie Stout, and Otto Wittman. Most of the correspondence with other Monuments Men is post World War II.

Writings by Rathbone consist of student papers, typescript drafts of articles and entries for exhibition catalogs, notes and notebooks from European trips, and lectures.

Professional files encompass a range of documents related to Rathbone's museum directorships, projects, travels and professional affiliations. The folders about his work at the City Art Museum of St. Louis and the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston include correspondence, reports, meeting minutes, press releases and notes. There are also folders on specific projects such as the renovation of the historic Dederer-Blodgett House and Rathbone's membership on various art commissions and committees. Also found within this series are correspondence, notebooks, receipts, itineraries and vouchers for Rathbone's business trips to Europe and other locations while working for the Boston Museum of Fine Arts.

Printed materials include news clippings, articles, press releases, a few art magazines and exhibition catalogues, and invitations to events. There are also black and white photographs of exhibitions, including a Max Beckmann exhibit, and a few images of Rathbone.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 6 series.

Series 1: Biographical Materials, 1930-1982 (0.1 linear feet; Box 1)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1940-1985 (1.1 linear feet; Box 1-2)

Series 3: Writings, 1929-1967 (0.8 linear feet; Box 2)

Series 4: Professional Files, 1938-1984 (2 linear feet; Box 2-4, OV 6)

Series 5: Printed Materials, 1954-1975 (0.2 linear feet; Box 4-5, OV 6)

Series 6: Photographs, 1936-1972 (0.1 linear feet; Box 5)
Biographical / Historical:
Perry Townsend Rathbone (1911-2000) was a prominent museum director who worked primarily in Boston and New York City. He was an early supporter of German Expressionism in America.

Rathbone was director of the City Art Museum of St. Louis from 1940-1955, moving on to direct the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston from 1954-1972, where he led a period of extensive reform. After retiring from the museum, he worked for one year for the Chase Manhattan Bank as an art consultant. Rathbone worked as director and senior vice president of Christies USA auction house from 1973-1987. After 1987, he continued working at Christies as a consultant.

Rathbone was born in Germantown, Pennsylvania on July 3, 1911 and grew up in New Rochelle, New York. He attended Harvard College, majoring in Art History and graduating in 1933. He then completed the graduate "museum course" taught by Professor Paul Sachs in 1934. The Paul Sachs museum course was famous for cultivating future directors at some of this country's most prestigious museums. After Harvard, Rathbone was appointed as curator of Alger House (later renamed the Grosse Pointe War Memorial), a branch of the Detroit Institute of Arts. Rathbone directed the ''Masterpieces of Art'' exhibit at the 1939 New York World's Fair. The success of the exhibit led to his appointment as director of the City Art Museum of St. Louis, Missouri in 1940 at the age of 29, making him the youngest American museum director at the time.

During World War II, Rathbone served in the U.S. Navy from late 1942-1945. He was a commissioned officer in charge of the Navy Art and Poster Section, Office of Public Relations in Washington, D.C. He supervised five Navy "combat artists," who painted naval battles and depicted the daily lives of soldiers. He also served as an officer in New Calcedonia. He separated from service as a Lieutenant Commander in late 1945. This collection does not contain records directly related to his military service. In 1945 Rathbone married Euretta de Cosson while on leave in Washington, D.C. They had three children together: Peter, Eliza, and Belinda.

Rathbone resumed his position as the director of the City Art Museum of St. Louis after the war. The Detroit Institute of Arts director William R. Valentiner introduced Rathbone to German Expressionism. Rathbone helped the German Expressionist painter Max Beckmann, labeled a ''degenerate artist'' by Hitler, and his wife immigrate to America and then arranged a teaching position for Beckmann at Washington University. Rathbone and Beckmann became close, and in 1948, Rathbone organized a Beckmann retrospective at the City Art Museum. Beckmann made a portrait of Rathbone and one of his wife Euretta. Rathbone gave the eulogy at Beckmann's funeral in 1950.

In 1955 Rathbone became the director of the Museum of Fine Arts (MFA) in Boston. During his tenure there he expanded the museum by 80,000 square feet, doubled the staff, and oversaw the renovations of 57 of the Museum's 189 galleries. He mounted exhibitions of Rembrandt, Matisse, Modigliani, Cezanne, van Gogh and Courbet. The Boston Museum's first acquisitions of Pablo Picasso, Alexander Calder, Constantine Brancusi, Paul Klee, Alberto Giacometti and other works by 20th-century artists occurred under Rathbone's directorship. Rathbone also served as curator of paintings and wrote the catalog essays for many of the museum's exhibitions. Working with Frances Weeks Hallowell, he established the first "Ladies Committee" for the museum, which substantially increased membership. He was appointed as Chevalier de Légion d'Honneur by the French government in 1964.

In 1969, the Museum of Fine Arts purchased what was believed to be a Raphael portrait of Eleonora Gonzaga, 1505, from a Genoa art dealer. The work was meant to be the highlight of the museum's centennial celebration. However controversy arose when the Italian government alleged that the work was smuggled out of the country and the museum was forced to return the painting to the Italian government. The situation caused Rathbone to resign in 1972.

At the request of David Rockefeller, Rathbone became an art consultant to Chase Manhattan Bank for one year. In 1973, he became director of Christie's auction house in New York and senior vice president in 1977, working there until 1987, when he retired but still worked as a consultant.

Perry Townsend Rathbone died on January 22, 2000 at the age of 88.
Related Materials:
The Archives of American Art also holds an oral history interview of Perry Townsend Rathbone conducted in 1975-1976 by Paul Cummings for the Archives of American Art's oral history program.
Provenance:
Perry Townsend Rathbone donated his paper to the Archives of American Art in 1977 and 1988.
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:
Museum directors -- Massachusetts -- Boston  Search this
Genre/Form:
Transcripts
Photographs
Interviews
Citation:
Perry Townsend Rathbone papers, 1929-1985. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.rathperr
See more items in:
Perry Townsend Rathbone papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-rathperr
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Katharine Kuh, 1982 Mar. 18-1983 Mar. 24

Interviewee:
Kuh, Katharine, 1904-1994  Search this
Interviewer:
Berman, Avis, 1949-  Search this
Subject:
Rothko, Mark  Search this
Adams, Ansel  Search this
Albers, Josef  Search this
Albright, Ivan  Search this
Archipenko, Alexander  Search this
Arensberg, Walter  Search this
Arensberg, Louise S. (Louise Stevenson)  Search this
Avery, Milton  Search this
Barr, Alfred H., Jr.  Search this
Berenson, Bernard  Search this
Davis, Stuart  Search this
De Kooning, Willem  Search this
Ernst, Max  Search this
Duchamp, Marcel  Search this
Hofmann, Hans  Search this
Kepes, Gyorgy  Search this
Klee, Paul  Search this
Léger, Fernand  Search this
Mérida, Carlos  Search this
Mies van der Rohe, Ludwig  Search this
Moholy-Nagy, László  Search this
Newman, Barnett  Search this
Noguchi, Isamu  Search this
Paepcke, Walter Paul  Search this
Porter, Eliot  Search this
Ray, Man  Search this
Rich, Daniel Catton  Search this
Smith, David  Search this
Stamos, Theodoros  Search this
Stieglitz, Alfred  Search this
Still, Clyfford  Search this
Tamayo, Rufino  Search this
Tobey, Mark  Search this
Tworkov, Jack  Search this
Weston, Edward  Search this
Art Institute of Chicago  Search this
Black Mountain College (Black Mountain, N.C.)  Search this
First National Bank of Chicago  Search this
Vassar College  Search this
Katharine Kuh Gallery (Chicago, Ill.)  Search this
Mark Rothko and His Times Oral History Project  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Saturday review  Search this
Abstract expressionism  Search this
Curators -- Interviews  Search this
Art museum curators -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)12186
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)215638
AAA_collcode_kuh82
Theme:
Chicago's Art-Related Archival Materials: A Terra Foundation Resource
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_215638

Polly Thayer (Starr) papers

Creator:
Thayer, Polly, 1904-2006  Search this
Names:
Copley Society (Boston, Mass.)  Search this
Friends General Conference (U.S.)  Search this
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston  Search this
Nucleus Club (Boston, Mass.)  Search this
Trustees of Reservations (Mass.)  Search this
Vose Galleries of Boston  Search this
Abramson, Doris E.  Search this
Cortissoz, Royal, 1869-1948  Search this
Hofer, Philip, 1898-1984  Search this
Koval, Dorothy  Search this
Sarton, May, 1912-  Search this
Starr, Donald C.  Search this
Thayer, Ethel Randolph, 1870-1953  Search this
Thayer, Ezra Ripley, 1866-1915  Search this
Tudor, Tasha  Search this
Wheelwright, John, 1897-1940  Search this
Yarnall, Agnes  Search this
Extent:
21.6 Linear feet
0.807 Gigabytes
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Gigabytes
Photographs
Sound recordings
Sketchbooks
Transcripts
Interviews
Sketches
Video recordings
Drawings
Scrapbooks
Date:
1846-2008
bulk 1921-2008
Summary:
The papers of Boston portraitist and painter Polly Thayer (Starr) (1904-2006) measure 21.6 linear feet and 0.807 GB and date from 1846 to 2008, with the bulk of the materials dating from 1921-2008. The papers document Thayer's personal life and career as a painter, portraitist, and pastel artist. Found within the papers are biographical materials, extensive family papers, correspondence with artists and art venues, interviews, writings, subject files, organization files, exhibition files, art inventory records, printed and digital materials, five sketchbooks, artwork, and photographs.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of Boston portraitist and painter Polly Thayer (Starr) (1904-2006) measure 21.6 linear feet and 0.807 GB and date from 1846 to 2008, with the bulk of the materials dating from 1921-2008. The papers document Thayer's personal life and career as a painter, portraitist, and pastel artist. Found within the papers are biographical materials, extensive family papers, correspondence with artists and art venues, interviews, writings, subject files, organization files, exhibition files, art inventory records, printed and digital materials, five sketchbooks, artwork, and photographs.

Biographical material includes a marriage certificate, school records, inventories of possessions, passports, files about the 1923 Great Kanto earthquake in Japan, and a few personal and scattered financial documents such as invoices and receipts for various art related expenses.

Extensive family papers on many of Polly Thayer's immediate and extended family members include obituaries, condolence letters, writings, and printed materials. The most voluminous files are about Polly Thayer's husband Donald Carter Starr, her mother Ethel Randolph Thayer, and her father Ezra Ripley Thayer.

There is limited correspondence with friends and and colleagues, including Royal Cortissoz, Philip Hofer, Tasha Tudor (photocopies), Dorothy Koval, the curator who wrote about Thayer for her first show at Vose Galleries in 2001, as well as two art consultants who helped Thayer inventory her artwork. The bulk of the correspondence is with museums, galleries, and other venues such as the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Copley Society of Boston, and Vose Galleries.

Interviews with Polly Thayer include transcripts as well as sound and video recordings. There is also a sound recording of poet and professor Doris Abramson discussing Catherine Sargent Huntington.

Writings include typescript and handwritten drafts of essays, notebooks, and notes on assorted topics. The bulk of the material was written by Thayer, with a few writings by others.

Subject files are found for people and general interests. The "People" files are collected documents about Thayer's friends, colleagues, artists, and portrait subjects. The files include short biographies, articles, obituaries, a few photographs, two videocassettes and one sound recording. The most voluminous files are on Francis DeLancey Cunningham, the Howe family, Rose Nichols, May Sarton, John Brooks Wheelwright, and Agnes Yarnall. Thayer's "Interests" files consist of articles and clippings on various topics such as animals, humor, and pacifism.

Organization files contain materials related to Polly Thayer's charitable contributions, club memberships and affiliations, including The Chilton Club, Nucleus Club, Religious Society of Friends, and Trustees of Reservations, among others. These files contain seven sound recordings.

Exhibition files contain exhibition catalogs, reviews, clippings, notes, inventory price lists, and other materials about Thayer's solo and group shows.

Art inventory records consist of dismantled binders of inventories that also include photographs of artwork and descriptive information such as the title, medium, and dimensions. There are also photographic inventories of works of art arranged by subject, and several partial art inventories.

Printed materials include two scrapbooks compiled by Polly Thayer's mother containing articles about Thayer, magazines, journals, exhibition catalogs, brochures, exhibition invitations, postcards, clippings, and miscellaneous materials. Digital materials consist of inventories and digitized audio interviews.

Five sketchbooks include figure drawings, portrait sketches, and landscape sketches. Also found are loose drawings of animals, landscapes, and people.

Disbound binders of photographs contain images of works of art that are grouped by subject, including portraits, landscapes, and "mystical/flowers/animals," as well as personal photographs of Polly Thayer and family members, houses, social events, pets, and friends. There is one small disbound photograph album of houses and properties.
Arrangement:
The Polly Thayer papers were organized and inventoried by curator Dorothy Koval and other art consultants prior to arriving at the Archives of American Art, and most likely do not reflect the original order by Polly Thayer. The Archives has maintained the arrangement imposed by Koval for the bulk of the papers. This collection is arranged as 13 series.

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1921-2007 (0.8 linear feet; Box 1, 22, 0.582 GB; ER01-ER02)

Series 2: Family Files, 1846-2006 (2 linear feet; Box 1-3, 22)

Series 3: Correspondence, 1929-2008 (1.3 linear feet; Box 3-5)

Series 4: Interviews, 1995-2004 (0.2 linear feet; Box 5, 0.196 GB; ER03)

Series 5: Writings, 1922-2006 (1.7 linear feet; Box 5-6)

Series 6: Subject Files, circa 1900-2008 (3.3 linear feet; Box 7-10)

Series 7: Organization Files, 1931-2008 (1 linear feet; Box 10-11, 0.029 GB; ER04)

Series 8: Exhibition Files, 1928-2006 (1.9 linear feet; Box 11-13)

Series 9: Art Inventory, circa 1940-1999 (4.6 linear feet; Box 13-17)

Series 10: Printed Material, 1900-2006 (1.8 linear feet; Box 17-19, 22)

Series 11: Sketchbooks, 1930-circa 1970 (0.3 linear feet; Box 19, 23)

Series 12: Artwork, 1927-circa 1990 (0.4 linear feet; Box 19, 23, OV 25)

Series 13: Photographs, 1898-2006 (2.1 linear feet; Box 19-21, 24)
Biographical / Historical:
Polly Thayer (Starr) (1904-2006) was a Boston painter of portraits, landscapes, and still lifes.

Ethel Randolph Thayer, known as Polly, was born in Boston in 1904, the daughter of Professor Ezra Ripley Thayer, also Dean of the Harvard Law School, and Ethel Randolph Thayer, née Clark. Thayer began her drawing lessons at an early age and later attended the Westover Boarding School in Middlebury, Connecticut. Although she signed some of her early paintings Ethel Thayer, by the end of the 1920s she generally signed her work Polly Thayer. She continued to use Polly Thayer as her brush name after she married, although in 1967 she changed her name legally from Ethel Randolph Starr to Polly Thayer Starr.

After graduating from Westover School, Thayer traveled to China, Korea, and Japan with her brother and mother. While in Japan, the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923 struck just as their ship was about to leave Yokohama. In the devastation that followed, their ship was used as a hospital and Polly Thayer assisted with nursing the injured.

After returning home, Thayer began her formal studies at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts from 1923 to 1925 where she took painting classes taught by Philip Hale. She eventually left the Boston Museum and began private painting lessons with Hale. While working under Hale, she painted a large nude, Circles, which was awarded the National Academy of Design's coveted Julius Hallgarten Prize in 1929. She also spent the summer of 1924 in Provincetown studying with Charles Hawthorne and traveled to Europe where she studied at the Académie Colarossi in Paris. She later studied in Madrid and, from 1930-1933, at the Art Students League in New York City.

Thayer's first solo exhibition was held on New Year's Eve, 1930 at the Doll & Richards gallery in Boston. The Globe reviewer declared it "surely settles her status as one of the foremost painters in the country." The success of the exhibition led to numerous portrait commissions --any of them exhibited at Wildenstein gallery in New York City --and launched Thayer's career as a portrait artist. Her portrait subjects include Judith Anderson, Jacques Barzun, Maurice Evans, Lewis Galantiere, Robert Hale, May Sarton, John Wheelwright, and Agnes Yarnall, among others. Additional galleries that subsequently gave Thayer solo shows were the Sessler Gallery in Philadelphia; Contemporary Arts and Pietrantonio Galleries in New York; and in Boston the Guild of Boston Artists, Grace Horne Galleries, Child's Gallery, The Copley Society, the St. Botolph Club and the Boston Public Library.

In 1933, Polly Thayer married Donald Starr, a Boston lawyer and avid sailor. They married in Italy and honeymooned in Paris while he took a break from a sailing trip around the world on his schooner "Pilgrim." They had two daughters, Victoria and Dinah. In 1942 Thayer joined the Society of Friends (Quakers) which became an important part of her life and identity. She was active in many educational, charitable and cultural institutions and local clubs. Thayer had long been fascinated by the dynamics, meaning and variety of visual experience. In 1981 the Friends Journal published her essay "On Seeing," a paper she continued to refine until she was ninety-seven.

In the 1950s and 1960s, Polly Thayer began focusing more on landscapes and still lifes and continued to be prolific artist, exhibiting in numerous solo and group exhibits in Boston, New York, and Philadelphia. In her later years she renewed an early affiliation with Vose Galleries which she maintained for the rest of her life. In 2001, she was the only living artist whose work was included in the Boston Museum of Fine Arts exhibition "A Studio of Her Own" and a banner of her portrait of May Sarton hung over the entrance to the Museum.

Polly Thayer (Starr) died on August 30, 2006.
Related Materials:
The Archives of American Art also holds an oral history interview of Polly Thayer conducted May 12, 1995-February 1, 1996, by Robert F. Brown.

The Polly Thayer Starr Charitable Trust holds archival materials and artwork by Polly Thayer.
Provenance:
The Polly Thayer (Starr) papers were donated to the Archives of American Art by Polly Thayer in 1998 and again in 2008 by Thayer via Stephanie S. Wright, executor. A notebook was donated in 2016 by Dinah Starr, daughter of Polly Thayer (Starr) and merged with the rest of the collection.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment. 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:
Portrait painters  Search this
Topic:
Painters -- Massachusetts -- Boston  Search this
Kanto Earthquake, Japan, 1923  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Sound recordings
Sketchbooks
Transcripts
Interviews
Sketches
Video recordings
Drawings
Scrapbooks
Citation:
Polly Thayer (Starr) papers, 1846-2008, bulk 1921-2008. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.thaypoll
See more items in:
Polly Thayer (Starr) papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-thaypoll
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Katharine Kuh

Topic:
Saturday review
Interviewee:
Kuh, Katharine  Search this
Interviewer:
Berman, Avis  Search this
Creator:
Mark Rothko and His Times Oral History Project  Search this
Names:
Art Institute of Chicago  Search this
Black Mountain College (Black Mountain, N.C.)  Search this
First National Bank of Chicago -- Art collections  Search this
Katharine Kuh Gallery (Chicago, Ill.)  Search this
Mark Rothko and His Times Oral History Project  Search this
Vassar College  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
Avery, Milton, 1885-1965  Search this
Barr, Alfred H., Jr., 1902-1981  Search this
Berenson, Bernard, 1865-1959  Search this
Davis, Stuart, 1892-1964  Search this
De Kooning, Willem, 1904-1997  Search this
Duchamp, Marcel, 1887-1968  Search this
Ernst, Max, 1891-1976  Search this
Hofmann, Hans, 1880-1966  Search this
Kepes, Gyorgy, 1906-2001  Search this
Klee, Paul, 1879-1940  Search this
Léger, Fernand, 1881-1955  Search this
Mies van der Rohe, Ludwig, 1886-1969  Search this
Moholy-Nagy, László, 1895-1946  Search this
Mérida, Carlos, 1891-1984  Search this
Newman, Barnett, 1905-1970  Search this
Noguchi, Isamu, 1904-1988  Search this
Paepcke, Walter Paul, 1896-1960  Search this
Porter, Eliot, 1901-1990  Search this
Ray, Man, 1890-1976  Search this
Rich, Daniel Catton, 1904-1976  Search this
Rothko, Mark, 1903-1970  Search this
Smith, David, 1906-1965  Search this
Stamos, Theodoros, 1922-1997  Search this
Stieglitz, Alfred, 1864-1946  Search this
Still, Clyfford, 1904-1980  Search this
Tamayo, Rufino, 1899-  Search this
Tobey, Mark  Search this
Tworkov, Jack  Search this
Weston, Edward, 1886-1958  Search this
Extent:
313 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1982 Mar. 18-1983 Mar. 24
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Katharine Kuh conducted 1982 Mar. 18-1983 Mar. 24, by Avis Berman, for the Archives of American Art's Mark Rothko and His Times oral history project.
Kuh speaks of her invalid childhood in Chicago, the development of her interest in art, classes in art history at Vassar College, and her career as curator of modern art at the Art Institute of Chicago. She recalls in particular the "Sanity in Art" movement against modern art in Chicago. Kuh describes her relationship with Mark Rothko and Rothko's relationships with Mark Tobey, Clyfford Still, Kate Rothko, Theodoros Stamos, Milton Avery, Stanley Kunitz, and Hans Hofmann.
Kuh discusses her parents, the family silk business, travelling in Europe as a child, life in Chicago, the effects of polio and other illnesses on her interests, and her student years at Vassar College. She remembers visiting Bernard Berenson in Italy with her family and again with Daniel Catton Rich, with whom she worked very closely at the Art Institute of Chicago. She speaks of the Katharine Kuh Gallery, which she started in the mid-1930s and its place in the vanguard of the Chicago art scene.
Kuh remembers the effects of the stock market crash on her personal situation, her marriage to businessman George Kuh, distaste for life in the suburbs, and her divorce. She discusses the Katharine Kuh Gallery and the actions taken against her business by members of the reactionary "Sanity in Art" movement (including a very funny anecdote concerning Carlos Merida). She speaks of the classes in modern art that she taught at her gallery and of some of the artists she exhibited there, including the photographers Ansel Adams, Alfred Stieglitz, and Edward Weston.
Kuh remembers the McCarthy era and the political conservatism in Chicago, including her testimony on behalf of Bill Zimmerman, Acting Commissioner of Indian Affairs. She criticizes blockbuster exhibitions and the changes in the role of a museum curator. She reminisces about building the collection at the Art Institute of Chicago and the art education program she ran there, and recalls Stuart Davis, Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, Gyorgy Kepes, and Ivan Albright.
Kuh remembers Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, and Marcel Duchamp, as well as the collectors Walter Paepcke and Walter and Louise Arensberg (whose collection she surveyed in their home for an exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago).
Kuh focuses on her memories of Mark Rothko, recalling when they met, their friendship, his manner of working, his feelings about his work, and his worries towards the end of his life. She talks about Clyfford Still, Barnett Newman, and Mark Tobey. Some parts of this tape repeat what she said earlier.
Kuh continues discussing Rothko, particularly his Houston chapel murals and the retrospective exhibition at MOMA in 1961. She remembers visiting Rothko's studio and describes his working methods. She relates Rothko's views on other artists, including Milton Avery, Clyfford Still, Turner, Robert Motherwell, and Adolf Gottlieb; parts repeat things said before. Kuh also discusses Rothko's wife and daughter.
Kuh recounts building the collection at the Art Institute of Chicago and speaks of the museum staff, trustees, and donors. She remembers Alfred Barr at MOMA.
Kuh continues speaking about the Art Institute of Chicago, describing the circumstances of her resignation and subsequent move to New York. She talks of knowing Peggy Guggenheim, Max Ernst, and Fernand Leger.
Kuh describes her work as a consultant to college museums and her writings. She discusses the field of art criticism and her career as art editor at Saturday Review. She recalls Clyfford Still's retrospective exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and his death.
Kuh describes her work as a collector for the First National Bank of Chicago.
Kuh recounts more about her work at Saturday Review and her resignation. She goes into great detail about her travels in Alaska and British Columbia surveying Northwest Indian art for a government report. She speaks again about the McCarthy era.
Kuh speaks again about the Katharine Kuh Gallery and the artists she exhibited there, including Josef Albers (and his Black Mountain College), Alexander Archipenko, Stuart Davis, Paul Klee, Alexander Calder, and Man Ray.
Kuh continues her discussion of artists she exhibited at the Katharine Kuh Gallery, including Mark Tobey, Paul Klee, and Isamu Noguchi.
Kuh continues talking about artists she exhibited at the Katharine Kuh Gallery, including David Smith, Ansel Adams, Edward Weston, Eliot Porter, Rufino Tamayo, and Jack Tworkov.
Biographical / Historical:
Katharine Kuh (1904-1994) was an art consultant, curator, and critic from Chicago and New York City.
General:
Originally recorded on 16 sound cassettes. Reformatted in 2010 as 31 digital wav files. Duration is 21 hrs., 52 min.
Provenance:
This interview was conducted as part of the Archives of American Art's Mark Rothko and his Times oral history project, with funding provided by the Mark Rothko Foundation.
Others interviewed on the project (by various interviewers) include: Sonia Allen, Sally Avery, Ben-Zion, Bernard Braddon, Ernest Briggs, Rhys Caparn, Elaine de Kooning, Herbert Ferber, Esther Gottlieb, Juliette Hays, Sidney Janis, Buffie Johnson, Jacob Kainen, Louis Kaufman, Jack Kufeld, Stanley Kunitz, Joseph Liss, Dorothy Miller, Betty Parsons, Wallace Putnam, Rebecca Reis, Maurice Roth, Sidney Schectman, Aaron Siskind, Joseph Solman, Hedda Sterne, Jack Tworkov, Esteban Vicente and Ed Weinstein. Each has been cataloged separately.
Restrictions:
Transcript: Patrons must use microfilm copy.
Rights:
Authorization to quote or reproduce for the purposes of publication requires written permission from Avis Berman. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Occupation:
Art critics -- Interviews  Search this
Artists -- United States  Search this
Topic:
Abstract expressionism  Search this
Curators -- Interviews  Search this
Art museum curators -- Interviews  Search this
Function:
Art galleries, Commercial -- Illinois -- Chicago
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.kuh82
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-kuh82

Gertrude Kasle Gallery records

Creator:
Gertrude Kasle Gallery (Detroit, Mich.)  Search this
Names:
Universal Limited Art Editions (Firm)  Search this
Bontecou, Lee, 1931-  Search this
De Kooning, Willem, 1904-1997  Search this
Dine, Jim, 1935-  Search this
Frankenthaler, Helen, 1928-2011  Search this
Goodman, Brenda Joyce, 1943-  Search this
Goodnough, Robert, 1917-  Search this
Goodyear, John L., 1930-  Search this
Gottlieb, Adolph, 1903-1974  Search this
Grosman, Tatyana, 1904-1982  Search this
Guston, Philip, 1913-1980  Search this
Hartigan, Grace  Search this
Jenkins, Paul, 1923-2012  Search this
Johnson, Ray, 1927-  Search this
Kasle, Gertrude, 1917-  Search this
Motherwell, Robert  Search this
Natkin, Robert, 1930-  Search this
Nesbitt, Lowell, 1933-1993  Search this
Oldenburg, Claes, 1929-  Search this
Pollock, Charles C.  Search this
Rauschenberg, Robert, 1925-2008  Search this
Schmidt, Julius, 1923-  Search this
Shapiro, Babe  Search this
Tall, Bill  Search this
Todd, Mike, 1935-  Search this
Tworkov, Jack  Search this
Extent:
8.1 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Interviews
Photographs
Sound recordings
Date:
1949-1999
bulk 1964-1983
Summary:
The records of the Gertrude Kasle Gallery of Detroit measure 8.1 linear feet and date from 1949-1999, with the bulk of records dating from 1964-1983. The collection documents the establishment and operations of this contemporary American art gallery and consists of artists files, business and administrative files, exhibition files, photographic materials, and interviews and lectures in the form of sound recordings.
Scope and Content Note:
The records of the Gertrude Kasle Gallery of Detroit measure 8.1 linear feet and date from 1949-1999, with the bulk of the records dating from 1964-1983. The collection documents the establishment and operations of this contemporary American art gallery and consists of artists files, business and administrative files, exhibition files, photographic materials, and interviews and lectures in the form of sound recordings.

The bulk of the records consist of Artists' Files that document the professional and personal relationships Kasle fostered with the artists represented by the gallery, including sales and exhibitions. The files contain a wide variety of materials and the amount of documentation for each artist also varies. Typically the files contain personal and business correspondence, sales documentation, exhibition photographs, photographs of works of art, family photographs, photographs of the artist, exhibition announcements and catalogs, other printed materials, greeting cards, and other documents. Some of the artists well-represented in the files include Lee Bontecou, Wilhem De Kooning, Jim Dine, Helen Frankenthaler, Brenda Goodman, Robert Goodnaugh, John Goodyear, Adolph Gottlieb, Philip Guston, Grace Hartigan, Ray Johnson, Robert Motherwell, Robert Natkin, Lowell Nesbitt, Claes Oldenburg, Charles Pollock, Robert Rauschenberg, Julius Schmidt, Babe Shapiro, Michael Todd, and Jack Tworkov. Additional general information about exhibitions is found in Series 3, Exhibition Files and additional photographs are filed in Series 4, Photographic Material.

Gallery and personal business and administrative files house documents relating to the founding and incorporation of the gallery and general operations, as well as some of Gertrude Kasle personal business files. Also found in this series are files related to fine art prints and the gallery's business relationship with Universal Limited Art Editions.

Scattered exhibition files are found for a few of the gallery's exhibitions and also include general exhibition related files, such as clippings, announcements, guest lists, and schedules. Most of the information about the gallery's exhibitions is found in the Artists Files. Photographs and slides are found throughout the collection, particularly in the Artists Files, but Series 4, Photographic Materials houses an extensive collection of slides documenting art work by artists represented by the gallery. There is also an autographed photograph portrait of Lowell Nesbitt.

Sound recordings are of interviews and lectures. Interviews are with Tatyana Grosman, Lowell Nesbitt, Paul Jenkins, and Bill Tall. There are recorded lectures by Paul Jenkins and Jack Tworkov. The sound recordings are on both audio cassette reel to reel tapes. Transcripts are not available.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into 5 series:

Series 1: Artists Files, 1949-1999 (Boxes 1-5, OV 11; 5.1 linear feet)

Series 2: Gallery and Personal Business and Administrative Files, 1961-1995 (Boxes 6-7, OV 12; 1.2 linear feet)

Series 3: Exhibition Files, 1963-1976 (Box 7; 7 folders)

Series 4: Photographic Materials, 1953-1985 (Boxes 7, 10; 18 folders)

Series 5: Sound Recordings, 1966-1971 (Boxes 7-9; 7 folders)
Historical Note:
Gertrude Kasle was born in New York City on December 2, 1917, and began her life-long career in the art world very early, taking art classes in high school and Saturday classes at the Art Students League. She began her formal studies in art education at New York University (NYU) and later transfered to the University of Michigan. Kasle interrupted her studies during World War II to devote herself to family work while her husband served as a military chaplain. The family returned to Detroit in 1947 and she began classes at the Society of Arts and Crafts. After raising her three children, she enrolled in Wayne State University in 1955, completing her degree in 1962.

While a student in Detroit, Kasle was active in the Friends of Modern Art group at the Detroit Institute of Art, and became Vice President. In 1962, she was approached by Detroit businessman Franklin Siden to help him open a gallery where she would have a one-third partnership. During the first year of Siden Gallery's operations, Kasle introduced Detroit to the work of many notable contemporay American artists, such as Larry Rivers, Grace Hartigan, Robert Goodnough, and Robert Natkin.

Her tenure with the Siden Gallery was short-lived and by 1964 she left and began to contemplate her next move. Several of the artists she had represented at Siden Gallery encouraged her to open her own gallery. Local art critic Joy Hakanson Colby who worked for the Detroit News interviewed Kasle and claimed that Kasle was "looking for gallery space". Responding to the article, the Fischer Building offered Kasle a very attractive lease in the "New Center" area of downtown Detroit that would later become known as the city's gallery center, housing several prominent galleries.

With the help of her husband and son, she opened the doors of the Gertrude Kasle Gallery on April 10, 1965. The opening exhibition featured Larry Rivers, Grace Hartigan, Robert Goodnough, Irving Kreisberg, and Manousher Yektai. Kasle's goal was to introduce the city of Detroit to the foremost contemporary artists in the country, some already well-established such as Wilhelm De Kooning, Helen Frankenthaler, Philip Guston, Grace Hartigan, Robert Motherwell, Lowell Nesbitt, Claes Oldenburg, Charles Pollock, Larry Rivers, and Jack Tworkov, as well as others just becoming known, such as Jim Dine. Through group and one-man shows, the Gertrude Kasle Gallery represented contemporary painting, mixed media, and sculpture, focusing primarily on the Abstract Expressionist movement. The gallery also fostered many local Detroit artists, giving them their first shows, including Al Loving and Brenda Goodman.

During her earlier tenure with the Siden Gallery Kasle had worked with Tatyana Grosman of Universal Limited Art Editions which produced original prints of contemporary artists including Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, and Jim Dine. In her own gallery, Kasle continued her business relationship with Grosman and fine art print publishers, allowing the gallery access to many artists that were previously unattainable.

For eleven years the Gertrude Kasle Gallery operated as a thriving contemporary art gallery, forming the nucleus for the growing Detroit modern and avant garde art scene during the sixties and seventies. Although financially the gallery was not as successful as hoped, it provided a cultural forum for artists and Detroit art enthusiasts to convene, learn, and celebrate. In April, 1976 the gallery closed. When asked why she was closing the gallery, Gertrude Kasle said, "Because the need for a gallery like mine isn't as great as it was in the 1960's. Today the public respects and understands more about creative innovation in contemporary art." (Hakanson Colby, March, 1976) Although the gallery formally closed, Kasle continues to work as a art consultant and live in Detroit.

This historical note relies heavily on the essays written by Gertrude Kasle's son, Stephen available on the Gertrude Kasle Gallery website.
Related Material:
Also available at the Archives of American Art is an oral history interview with Gertrude Kasle conducted by Dennis Barrie on July 24, 1975.
Provenance:
The collection was donated to the Archives of American Art in 1976 and 1982 by Mrs. Gertrude Kasle. A third accession was donated by the Cincinnati Art Museum in 2002.
Restrictions:
The collection is open for research. Use 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 galleries, Commercial -- Michigan -- Detroit  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century  Search this
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Photographs
Sound recordings
Citation:
The Gertrude Kasle Gallery records, 1949-1999 (bulk 1964-1983). Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.gertkasl
See more items in:
Gertrude Kasle Gallery records
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-gertkasl
Online Media:

Elaine L. Johnson papers

Creator:
Johnson, Elaine L.  Search this
Names:
Obregón, Alejandro, 1920-  Search this
Orozco, José Clemente, 1883-1949  Search this
Sanchez, Emilio, 1921-1999  Search this
Extent:
1 Linear foot
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1957-1978
Scope and Contents:
Correspondence files regarding her work as an art consultant and author, 1971-1978; manuscripts and notes for a book on Jose Clemente Orozco; writings; transcripts of speeches and interviews; clippings; photos of Johnson; memorandum and a report from the Museum of Modern Art; and miscellany. Also included are 7 untranscribed cassette tapes of Johnson interviewing Jose Clemente Orozco's son, Clemente, and Miguel Ocampo, Alejandro Obregon, Emilio Sanchez and other Latin American artists, 1968-1970.
Biographical / Historical:
Elaine L. Johnson (1928-1979) was a museum curator and art historian in New York City. Johnson was an associate curator of paintings and sculpture at the Museum of Modern Art, New York who wrote, "Contemporary Painters and Sculptors as Printmakers," 1966.
Related Materials:
Elaine Johnson Papers are located at the The Museum of Modern Art Archives.
Provenance:
The donor, Alan W. Johnson, is Elaine Johnson's brother.
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.
Occupation:
Art historians  Search this
Painters  Search this
Museum curators  Search this
Topic:
Art, Central American  Search this
Hispanic American artists  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.johnelai
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-johnelai

Howard Wise Gallery records

Creator:
Howard Wise Gallery  Search this
Names:
Burger, Warren E., 1907-1995  Search this
Chermayeff, Serge, 1900-  Search this
Dickinson, Edwin Walter, 1891-1978  Search this
Dubuffet, Jean, 1901-  Search this
MacAgy, Douglas, 1913-  Search this
Sturken, Marita, 1957-  Search this
Tworkov, Jack  Search this
Wise, Howard  Search this
Extent:
11.4 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Interviews
Video recordings
Date:
1943-1989
Summary:
The records of the Howard Wise Gallery in New York, and its predecessor the Howard Wise Gallery of Present Day Painting and Sculpture in Cleveland, Ohio, measure 11.4 linear feet and date from 1943-1989. Records consist of correspondence, artist files, exhibition files, business records, writings, and video recordings that document the activities of Wise's gallery in Cleveland from 1957-1961 and, to a lesser extent, his gallery in New York City from 1960-1970. Wise's activities following the closing of the Howard Wise Gallery are also found among the correspondence, artist files, business records, writings, and video recordings.
Scope and Content Note:
The records of the Howard Wise Gallery in New York, and its predecessor the Howard Wise Gallery of Present Day Painting and Sculpture in Cleveland, Ohio, measure 11.4 linear feet and date from 1943-1989. Records consist of correspondence, artist files, exhibition files, business records, writings, and video recordings that document the activities of Wise's gallery in Cleveland from 1957-1961 and, to a lesser extent, his gallery in New York City from 1960-1970. Wise's activities following the closing of the Howard Wise Gallery are also found among the correspondence, artist files, business records, writings, and video recordings.

Correspondence documents the operations of Wise's galleries in Cleveland and New York. A few subject files and a small amount of Howard Wise's personal correspondence (some pre-dating and post-dating the galleries) are also included in this series.

Artist files contain varying combinations of correspondence, printed material, notes and writings, and photographs. Most artists represented in this series were affiliated with Howard Wise Gallery either in Cleveland or New York City, but some files are for individuals of potential interest to the gallery, and those of continued interest to Wise after the closing of the gallery. Exhibition files contain correspondence, printed material, guest lists, and notes. Exhibition files are not a comprehensive record of exhibitions held in Wise's galleries.

Business records include records of cash disbursements that are primarily for Howard Wise's travel and entertainment expenses. Business memoranda and correspondence between the Cleveland and New York galleries document sales, inventory, shipments and financial information. Also among the business records are photographs of the Howard Wise Gallery of Present Day Painting and Sculpture in Cleveland, a set of slides of artworks and installation views dating to the late 1950s, and inventories and loan documentation related to Howard Wise's personal art collection. Writings consist of essays and speeches by Howard Wise, writings on Howard Wise and the Howard Wise Gallery artists by Douglas MacAgy and Marita Sturken, and a typescript recollection of a dinner party conversation with Supreme Court Justice Warren Burger from 1973.

Video recordings include 41 videoreels and videocassettes, a log book of video shot by Wise in the early 1970s, and a program for a screening of his videos held in Wellfleet, Mass. Recordings are mainly unedited footage of interviews with artists and community figures, gallery openings, and other community events in Wellfleet, Mass. and the greater Cape Cod region. A log book and detailed labels on videos provide details about their content. Three edited works made by Wise from the raw footage include "video portraits" of Serge Chermayeff, Edwin Dickinson, and Jack Tworkov. Also found is footage from the premiere performance of Jean Dubuffet's Coucou Bazaar at the Guggenheim Museum, and a dinner party attended by Dubuffet. Video of works by other artists include footage from media and kinetic artworks shown in the Howard Wise Gallery from 1964-1967, as well as a video performance by Hannah Wilke from 1974.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 5 series:

Series 1: Correspondence, 1943-1984 (Boxes 1-2; 2.0 linear ft.)

Series 2: Artist Files, 1950-1984 (Boxes 3-6; 3.4 linear ft.)

Series 3: Exhibition Files, 1957-1968 (Boxes 6-7; 0.9 linear ft.)

Series 4: Business Records, 1957-1989 (Boxes 7-9; 2.6 linear ft.)

Series 5: Writings, 1957-1984 (Box 9; 4 folders)

Series 6: Video Recordings, 1973-1985 (2.5 linear feet)
Historical Note:
After twenty-five years as president of Arco Company, his family's industrial paint and varnish manufacturing business in Cleveland, Howard Wise (1903-1989) sold his interest in the business and began to pursue his own artistic interests. The Howard Wise Gallery of Present Day Painting and Sculpture opened in Cleveland in 1957 and operated for the next five years. It first showed School of Paris and New York painters and also sold prints. With the exception of a few collectors and loyal customers, Clevelanders did not appreciate Wise's efforts to bring the best new art from all over the world to the city. The Cleveland Plain Dealer ran several editorials ridiculing modern art in general and Howard Wise and his gallery in particular. Attendance was poor and Wise decided to relocate to New York.

After a year of searching for a suitable location and renovating the space, Howard Wise Gallery opened at 50 West 57th Street in 1960. The gallery generated excitement among visitors and artists, and sales and attendance were much better than in Cleveland. After closing the Cleveland gallery in 1961 Wise never again returned to his native city. Despite being well received and conducting significantly more business in New York, the gallery was not a great financial success. Between 1962 and 1965, art consultant Douglas MacAgy, a friend and the former director of the Dallas Museum of Art, worked with Wise in running the gallery. Although the critics were not always favorably impressed, Howard Wise Gallery had a significant following and made important contributions through its support of the use of technology in art, specifically kinetic and light sculpture and the video art movement.

By the late 1960s, Wise recognized that a gallery setting was not suitable for many of the new art forms. He closed Howard Wise Gallery in 1970 so that he could focus his energy and resources on exploring the best way to support environmental sculpture, political work, and video art. Wise founded Electronic Arts Intermix in 1971. Originally an artist-run umbrella organization, today Electronic Arts Intermix is a non-profit videotape distribution service and editing facility, that has amassed an important and highly regarded video art collection.
Related Material:
Also found in the Archives of American Art is an oral history interview with Howard Wise conducted by Paul Cummings on February 22, 1971. The Harvard Art Museum Archives also holds archival records of the Howard Wise Gallery.
Separated Material:
The Archives of American Art also holds microfilm of material lent for microfilming (reel N70-77) including publicity materials, correspondence, exhibition plans, text of an exhibition catalog, and photographs relating to Howard Kiesler. Lent materials were returned to the lender and are not described in the collection container inventory.
Provenance:
In 1979, the Howard Wise Gallery lent material to the Archives of American Art for microfilming. The rest of the collection was donated by Howard Wise in 1971 and by Barbara Wise, Howard Wise's widow via Dana Kasarsky, Wise's daughter-in-law in 2011.
Restrictions:
The collection is open for research. Use requires an appointment. 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.
Topic:
Video art  Search this
Art, Modern  Search this
Art galleries, Commercial -- Ohio -- Cleveland  Search this
Art galleries, Commercial -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Kinetic sculpture  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Interviews
Video recordings
Citation:
Howard Wise Gallery records, 1943-1969. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.howawisg
See more items in:
Howard Wise Gallery records
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-howawisg
Online Media:

Fendrick Gallery records

Creator:
Fendrick Gallery  Search this
Names:
Barbara Fendrick Gallery  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Arneson, Robert, 1930-1992  Search this
Bailey, William, 1930-2020  Search this
Benes, Barton Lidic  Search this
Brush, Daniel  Search this
Castle, Wendell, 1932-2018  Search this
Cottingham, Robert, 1935-  Search this
Drake, James, 1946-  Search this
Dreyfuss, John, 1949-  Search this
Dusenbery, Walter, 1939-  Search this
Frankenthaler, Helen, 1928-2011  Search this
Gilliam, Sam, 1933-  Search this
Johns, Jasper, 1930-  Search this
KaskeyRaymond J., 1943-  Search this
Lalanne, Claude  Search this
Lalanne, François Xavier  Search this
Maria da Conceição  Search this
Paley, Albert  Search this
Raffael, Joseph, 1933-  Search this
Summer, Carol  Search this
Tenneson, Joyce, 1945-  Search this
Woodyard, William  Search this
Extent:
106.4 Linear feet
0.008 Gigabytes
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Gigabytes
Account books
Photographs
Date:
1952-2001
Summary:
The records of the Fendrick Gallery measure 106.4 linear feet and 0.008 GB and span the years 1952 to 2001. The bulk of the collection is comprised of artist's files that document the gallery's relations with and representation of over 300 contemporary artists and sculptors, including Robert Arneson, William Bailey, Daniel Brush, Wendell Castle, Robert Cottingham, James Drake, John Dreyfuss, Walter Dusenbury, Roger Essley, Helen Frankenthaler , Sam Gilliam, Jasper Johns, Raymond Kaskey, Claude and Francois Lalanne, Albert Paley, Joseph Raffael, Carol Summer, and numerous other artists. Also found are subject, exhibition, commission, administrative, and financial files, as well as files documenting the gallery's relationship with other museums and galleries.
Scope and Content Note:
The records of the Fendrick Gallery measure 106.4 linear feet and 0.008 GB and span the years 1952 to 2001. The bulk of the collection is comprised of artist's files that document the gallery's relationships with and representation of over 300 contemporary artists, including Robert Arneson, William Bailey, Daniel Brush, Wendell Castle, Robert Cottingham, James Drake, John Dreyfuss, Walter Dusenbury, Roger Essley, Helen Frankenthaler, Sam Gilliam, Jasper Johns, Raymond Kaskey, Claude and Francois Lalanne, Albert Paley, Joseph Raffael, Carol Summer, and numerous other artists. Also found are subject, exhibition, commission, administrative, and financial files, as well as files documenting the gallery's relationship with other museums and galleries.

Series 1, Artist's Files, measures almost 42 linear feet and dates from 1962-2001. Found here are files documenting the gallery's relationship with over 300 contemporary artists. Files typically contain correspondence, sales receipts, printed materials, exhibition catalogs and announcements, commission information, photographs, slides, and other materials.

Series 2, Albert Paley, 1970-2001, and undated, provides detailed documentation (14.5 linear feet) of the Fendrick gallery's representation of prominent American metal sculptor Albert Paley. The gallery represented Paley from the early 1980s through the early 1990s and devoted a great deal of its resources promoting Paley's work through exhibitions and commissioned sales. Correspondence between the Fendrick Galleries and Paley Studios is found in this series, along with publicity materials, commission proposals and sketches, exhibition materials, and audio-visual and photographic documentation of Paley's work. Researchers should also consult Series 3 for additional documentation of Paley's commissioned projects.

Series 3, Commissioned Works and Projects, 1972-2000, and undated, documents the variety of commissions and special projects the gallery arranged and managed on behalf of its represented artists. Because privately commissioned work and government-sponsored public art projects represented a significant source of revenue for the Fendrick galleries, the gallery devoted a substantial amount of time and resources towards securing these projects. These files contain applications, proposals, sketches, correspondence, photographs and other material arranged by name of project.

Series 4, Exhibition Files, 1961, 1970-1996, and undated, houses files relating to exhibitions organized by Fendrick Gallery. Found here are exhibition announcements, invitations, and catalogs; specific named exhibition files; and files concerning special projects or exhibitions, often jointly curated with other galleries or institutions. The Fendrick gallery was also actively involved in various governmental programs, such as Art in the Embassies Program, and organized traveling exhibits or loaned artwork to them.

The gallery's relationships with other galleries, museums, institutions, and art organizations is documented in Series 5, Museums and Galleries Files, 1952-2000, and undated. Many of the files concern loans, exhibition venues, and joint exhibitions or projects.

Series 6, Subject Files, 1952, 1960-2001, and undated contain numerous files arranged by subject heading. Here, researchers will find information collected and maintained by the gallery on various art medium, artists of interest, exhibition catalogs from museums and other galleries, information about small and fine art presses. Of particular interest are several folders entitled "Fine Art Printers & Publishers." Barbara Fendrick's early years in the art business centered upon exhibiting, promoting, and selling prints produced by young, emerging American artists. The information found here documents her growing personal relationships with some of the most prominent artists and printmakers of this era.

Records documenting administrative, business, operating, and financial affairs are arranged in Series 7, Administrative and Financial Files, 1960-2001, and undated. Found here are records of both the Barbara Fendrick Gallery (New York) and the Fendrick Gallery (Washington, D.C.), as well as files that document Barbara Fendrick's role as art consultant, appraiser, lecturer, exhibition juror, and guest curator. Found are numerous inventory cards, insurance records, consignment files, general correspondence, lists, loan files, notebooks, real estate files, card files on artists and clients, and history files. Of particular interest are the Day Books/Dailies maintained by the New York gallery staff consisting of entries and notes regarding prospective clients and their interests. The Telephone Log Books contain details of telephone conversations with artists, clients, dealers, and other art professionals. Series 7 also houses the financial records of both galleries, including invoices, financial statements, expenses, accounts, and tax records.
Arrangement:
The Fendrick Gallery records were processed to the series, subseries, and folder level. The collection is arranged into seven series. Items within folders, for the most part, were not fully sorted or preserved. When possible, materials were generally arranged at least by year. Within Series 1, Artists' Files, each set of folders for a particular artist are only given span dates. Due to the amount and complexity of material compiled on the artist Albert Paley, his files are arranged into a separate series of their own.

Series 1: Artists Files, 1962-2001, undated (Box 1-42, OV 108-110; 41.5 linear ft.)

Series 2: Albert Paley, 1970-2001, undated (Box 42-54; Box 107, OV 111-113, 117-118, FC 119; 14.6 linear ft., ER01; 0.001 GB)

Series 3: Commissioned Works and Projects, 1972- 2000, undated (Box 54-57; 3.5 linear ft.)

Series 4: Exhibition Files, 1961, 1970-1996, undated (Box 58-63; 5.5 linear feet)

Series 5: Museums and Galleries Files, 1952-200, undated (Box 64-73; 9.25 linear feet)

Series 6: Subject Files, 1952, 1960-2001, undated (Box 73-88, OV 115-116, FC 120; 15.6 linear ft.)

Series 7: Administrative and Financial Files, undated (Box 88-106; OV, ER02-ER03; 0.008 GB)
Historical Note:
The Fendrick Gallery was established in 1960 as a "by appointment only" gallery out of Barbara Fendrick's Washington, D.C., area home. Initially the gallery promoted contemporary American and European prints by emerging artists and also commissioned print editions by nationally-known artists. During the mid 1960s, the Fendrick Gallery also coordinated and produced art exhibitions on a contract basis for the United States Information Agency. The gallery was responsible for organizing the first large American art exhibition at the Department of State and the Federal Reserve.

In May, 1970 the Fendrick Gallery moved into a three-story townhouse in Georgetown and began presenting regular exhibitions open to the public. The gallery offered many prominent American artists, such as Robert Arneson, Jim Dine, Helen Frankenthaler, Jasper Johns, Louise Nevelson, and Robert Rauschenberg their first solo shows in the nation's capital. The Fendrick Gallery also represented many nationally known sculptors, such as John Dreyfuss, Walter Dusenbery, Raymond Kaskey, and Albert Paley.

Over the years, Fendrick Gallery promoted many emerging artists who were breaking down the barriers between art and craft in the areas of clay, furniture, metal, and book arts. The gallery held the first major show of contemporary ceramics on the East Coast, with the 1976 exhibition, Clay USA. The gallery also received critical acclaim for its exhibitions in the area of "book arts" and held four shows featuring the works of prominent American and international book artists.

In 1987 and 1988, the gallery expanded and opened the Barbara Fendrick Gallery in the Soho section of New York City. The New York location operated as both a gallery space and storage area and was often referred to as "The Warehouse." Both the Fendrick Gallery and the Barbara Fendrick Gallery closed in the summer of 1991, but Barbara Fendrick continues to work as an art consultant, appraiser, exhibition juror, lecturer, and guest curator.
Provenance:
The records of the Fendrick Gallery were donated to the Archives of American Art by Barbara Fendrick in 1999, with an addition to the records in 2001.
Restrictions:
The collection is open for research. Use of unmicrofilmed material 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.
Occupation:
Painters  Search this
Jewelers  Search this
Topic:
Art -- Washington (D.C.)  Search this
Furniture designers  Search this
Artists -- Washington (D.C.)  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- Washington (D.C.)  Search this
Sculptors  Search this
Artists' books  Search this
Art galleries, Commercial -- Washington (D.C.)  Search this
Printmakers  Search this
Metal-workers  Search this
Genre/Form:
Account books
Photographs
Citation:
Fendrick Gallery records, 1952-2001. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.fendgall
See more items in:
Fendrick Gallery records
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-fendgall
Online Media:

George Deem papers

Creator:
Deem, George, 1932-2008  Search this
Names:
Allan Stone Gallery  Search this
Nancy Hoffman Gallery  Search this
New Britain Museum of American Art  Search this
Pavel Zoubok Gallery  Search this
Andrews, Benny, 1930-2006  Search this
Bal, Mieke, 1946-  Search this
Copy, Richard  Search this
Dydo, Ulla E., 1925-  Search this
Evans, John, 1932-  Search this
Fattal, Simone  Search this
Guilliatt, Lee  Search this
Johnson, Ray, 1927-  Search this
Komar, Vitaly  Search this
Lazlo, Jean-Noel  Search this
Liedtke, Walter A.  Search this
Molesworth, Charles, 1941-  Search this
Rosenblum, Robert  Search this
Sassu, Antonio  Search this
Tanning, Dorothea, 1910-2012  Search this
Vermeer, Johannes, 1632-1675  Search this
Wheeler, Arthur K.  Search this
Wiener, Sam  Search this
William, Patricia  Search this
Extent:
18.2 Linear feet
10.71 Gigabytes
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Gigabytes
Photographs
Date:
1904-2015
bulk 1960-2008
Summary:
The papers of painter, writer, and dancer George Deem measure 18.2 linear feet and 10.71 GB and date from 1904-2015, with the bulk of the material dating from 1960-2008. The collection documents Deem's path from Midwestern farm child to New York City artist and teacher who specialized in recreating works of great masters, especially Johannes Vermeer. Correspondence, exhibition files, subject files, project files, writings by and about Deem, printed and digital material and photographic materials all show the trajectory of Deem's development as an artist.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of painter, writer, and dancer George Deem measure 18.2 linear feet and 10.71 GB and date from 1904-2015, with the bulk of the material dating from 1960-2008. The collection documents Deem's path from Midwestern farm child to New York City artist and teacher who specialized in recreating works of great masters, especially Johannes Vermeer. Correspondence, exhibition files, subject files, project files, writings by and about Deem, printed and digital material and photographic materials all show the trajectory of Deem's development as an artist.

Biographical materials include resumes, an address book, appointment books, birth and death certificates, obituaries and memorial tributes, passports, family histories, jury summons, grant applications, military and educational records.

Correspondence is with family, friends, colleagues, curators, and art dealers. Much of the professional correspondence concerns commissions and reproduction permission requests. Among the correspondents are: Benny Andrews, Mieke Bal, Ulla Dydo, John Evans, Simone Fattal, Lee Guilliat, Vitaly Komar, and Dorothea Tanning. Correspondence with Walter Liedtke, Charles Molesworth, Robert Rosenblum, Arthur K. Wheeler, and Patricia William discusses proposed exhibitions and writings by Deem and others about his work.

Writings include some of Deem's classroom lectures, poems, and short pieces that appeared in independent literary arts publications.

Subject files document Deem's dealings with art consultants and galleries regarding placement of his work, participation in benefit auctions, and gifts of his artwork to the New Britain Museum of American Art. There is extensive correspondence with Allan Stone Gallery, Nancy Hoffman Gallery, and Pavel Zoubok Gallery. Deem's participation in mail art exhibitions is documented by exhibition announcements and correspondence. Also found is mail art correspondence from Richard Copy, Ray Johnson, Jean-Noel Lazlo, Antonio Sassu, Sam Wiener and others: some pieces are copies. The bulk of the project files chronicle Deem's artistic output. Information sheets and photographic materials provide provenance and source references for over 500 works. Files also document commissions undertaken by Deem including book projects, and set designs for dance and theater workshops. Exhibition files document solo and group exhibitions in the United States and abroad.

Printed material includes books by Deem, exhibition catalogs, reviews, and reproductions. In addition, there are articles and academic papers about Deem and his work. Photographic materials include photographs, digital prints and transparencies; subjects include Deem, family, friends, travels, studio, exhibition installations, and his artwork.

The addition to the George Deem papers consists of scattered biographical materials, correspondence, project and subject files, printed and digital material, and photographic materials. The bulk consists of writings, including a memoir of his early days in New York. Twenty-three notebooks include notes and drafts of writings about his artwork; activities and meetings with colleagues and friends are also recorded. Among the photographic materials are five photograph albums - four are devoted to George Deem, his family, and friends; the fifth houses photographs of Deem's artwork.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 9 series.

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1938-circa 2013 (Boxes 1-2; 1.8 linear feet)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1954-2013 (Boxes 2-6; 4.8 linear feet)

Series 3: Writings, 1978-2012 (Box 6; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 4: Subject Files, circa 1960-circa 2013 (Boxes 6-8; 1 linear feet)

Series 5: Project Files, 1952-circa 2013 (Boxes 8-13, Box 20; 5.0 linear feet, ER01-ER02; 3.60 GB)

Series 6: Exhibition Files, 1960-circa 2013 (Boxes 13-15; 1.4 linear feet)

Series 7: Printed Material, 1966-circa 2013 (Boxes 15-16, OV 21; 1.1 linear feet)

Series 8: Photographic Materials, 1904-circa 2013 (Boxes 16-17, Box 20; 1.1 linear feet)

Series 9: Addition to the George Deem Papers, 1957-2015 (Boxes 17-19; 1.8 linear feet, ER03-ER04; 7.12 GB)
Biographical / Historical:
George Deem (1932-2008), a New York City based painter was best known for his original reinterpretations of the works of master painters. Raised on an Indiana farm, Deem showed an early interest in art and after graduating from Vincennes University in 1952 enrolled at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. His studies were interrupted by service in the U.S. Army. He completed his program at the Art Institute of Chicago in 1955.

After moving to New York City in 1958, Deem worked in the display department of the Metropolitan Museum of Art while continuing to paint original works after hours. His work was first exhibited at Barnard College, and in 1963 he had his first one man show at the Allan Stone Gallery, which represented him throughout his career. Later he also was affilated with Nancy Hoffman Gallery and Pavel Zoubok Gallery.

Deem travelled abroad, spending considerable time in Italy where he was influenced by classical art and architecture and began painting realistic figural images. He was interested in reinventing and reconstructing the art of the past, borrowing from artists such as Vermeer, Caravaggio, Goya and Millet. Deem produced a series of paintings relating to Vermeer's work, finally writing a book about this endeavor, Art School and How to Paint a Vermeer. Deem also wrote poetry, was involved in set design, and danced at Bennington College and other venues.

Deem's work was acknowledged in the academic world and he served as artist in residence or visiting artist at MacDowell Colony, Illinois State University, and other institutions. His work appeared in museum exhibitions in the United States and abroad, and is included in the permanent collections of museums including the Museum of Fine Arts Boston, New Britain Museum of American Art, and Herbert F. Johnson Museum at Cornell University, as well as in private collections.

George Deem died in 2008 of lung cancer in New York City.
Provenance:
The George Deem papers were donated to the Archives of American Art in 2013 and 2015 by Ronald Vance, executor of the George Deem estate.
Restrictions:
Use of original material requires an appointment. 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:
Dancers -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Topic:
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Artists' studios -- Photographs  Search this
Authors -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Educators -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Mail art  Search this
Painters -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Citation:
George Deem papers, 1904-2015, bulk 1960-2008. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.deemgeor
See more items in:
George Deem papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-deemgeor

Oral history interview with Frederick J. Dockstader

Interviewee:
Dockstader, Frederick J.  Search this
Interviewer:
Cummings, Paul  Search this
Extent:
60 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Interviews
Sound recordings
Date:
1970 June 16-July 2
Scope and Contents:
Interview of Frederick J. Dockstader conducted 1970 June 16-July 2, by Paul Cummings, for the Archives of American Art.
Biographical / Historical:
Frederick J. Dockstader (1919-1998) was an art consultant, museum director, and silversmith from New York, New York.
General:
Originally recorded on 1 sound tape reel. Reformatted in 2010 as 2 digital wav files. Duration is 3 hr., 51 min.
Provenance:
This interview is 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.
Topic:
Art, Modern -- 20th century  Search this
Museum directors -- New York (State) -- New York -- Interviews  Search this
Silversmiths -- New York (State) -- New York -- Interviews  Search this
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Identifier:
AAA.dockst70
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-dockst70

Mildred Constantine Papers

Creator:
Constantine, Mildred  Search this
Names:
Cleveland Museum of Art  Search this
Getty Conservation Institute  Search this
Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y.) -- Employees  Search this
Museum of New Mexico  Search this
Ohio State University  Search this
Philadelphia Museum of Art  Search this
Rhode Island School of Design  Search this
Abakanowicz, Magdalena  Search this
Albers, Anni  Search this
Barr, Alfred Hamilton, 1902-  Search this
Barragán, Luis, 1902-  Search this
Block, Lou, 1895-1969  Search this
Bourgeois, Louise, 1911-2010  Search this
Buic, Jagoda, 1930-  Search this
Burle Marx, Roberto, 1909-1994  Search this
Cohen, Elaine Lustig, 1927-  Search this
Coiner, Charles T., 1897-  Search this
Corzo, Miguel Angel  Search this
D'Harnoncourt, Anne, 1943-2008  Search this
Danto, Arthur Coleman, 1924-  Search this
Dehner, Dorothy, 1901-1994  Search this
Fitch, James Marston  Search this
Goeritz, Mathias, 1915-  Search this
Hart, Allen M., 1925-  Search this
Hicks, Sheila, 1934-  Search this
Koch, Richard H., d. 2009  Search this
Larsen, Jack Lenor, 1927-2020  Search this
Lionni, Leo, 1910-  Search this
Reeves, Ruth, 1892-1966  Search this
Reuter, Laurel  Search this
Roosevelt, Eleanor, 1884-1962  Search this
Shahn, Ben, 1898-1969 -- Photographs  Search this
Smith, David, 1906-1965  Search this
Ten Haeff, Ingeborg, 1915-  Search this
Vignelli, Massimo  Search this
Weisman, Donald M.  Search this
Wilder, Elizabeth, 1908-  Search this
Wilke, Ulfert, 1907-1987  Search this
Zeisler, Claire, 1903-1991  Search this
Extent:
5.3 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Scrapbooks
Photographs
Illustrated letters
Transcripts
Video recordings
Interviews
Date:
1945-2008
Summary:
The papers of Mildred Constantine measure 5.3 linear feet and are dated 1945-2009. Subject files, writings, photographs, and a scrapbook provide an overview of her curatorial work in the Architecture and Design department of the Museum of Modern Art, and subsequent activities as an independent curator, and art consultant. Especially well documented is Whole Cloth, a book written with Laurel Reuter that presents an historical overview of how artists have used cloth in their work.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of Mildred Constantine measure 5.3 linear feet and are dated 1945-2008. Subject files, writings, photographs, and a scrapbook provide an overview of her curatorial work in the Architecture and Design department of the Museum of Modern Art, and subsequent activities as an independent curator, and art consultant. Especially well documented is the book Whole Cloth that she wrote with Laurel Reuter.

Correspondence, though mostly business related, often touches on personal matters since many of the artists and art world figures with whom she corresponded were also friends. Correspondents include Miguel Angel Corzo, Arthur C. Danto, Dorothy Dehner, Allen Hart (who sent more than 40 illustrated letters), Elizabeth Wilder and Donald L. Weisman. She also corresponded with many art institutions and organizations, among them the Cleveland Museum of Art, Independent International Design Conference, El Museo del Barrio, Museum of New Mexico, Ohio State University, Philadelphia Museum of Art, and the Estate of David Smith.

Subject files reflect Constantine's activities and interests. A large portion of this series concerns Whole Cloth, a book written with Laurel Reuter that presents an historical look at how artists have used cloth in their work. Correspondence between the two authors, with artists, institutions, and others concerns researching and writing the volume. Also documented are the successes and failures of Constantine's decade long pursuit to publish the book. Other substantive files relate to the Cleveland Museum of Art, Getty Conservation Institute, Sheila Hicks, Jack Lenor Larsen, Rhode Island School of Design, and Soviet Film Posters. Files concerning the University of the Arts' 2003 Commencement include a videocassette.

Writings by Constantine are lecture material and notes. Also found are transcripts of interviews with Constantine and writings by others. Printed material includes newspaper and magazine articles about Constantine and her career. A scrapbook of printed material and photographs documents an exhibition of Latin American posters at the Library of Congress organized by Constantine.

Photographs of people include Mildred Constantine with family, friends, artists and others at public and private events around the world. Notable photographs include: Magdalena Abakanowicz, Anni Albers, Alfred Barr, Luis Barragan, Lou Block, Louise Bourgeois, Jagoda Buic, Elaine Lustig Cohen, Charles Coiner, James Marston Fitch, Mathias Goeritz, Ingeborg Ten Haeff, Ann d'Harnoncourt, Sheila Hicks, Richard Koch, Nancy Koenigsberg, Jack Lenor Larsen, Leo Lionni, Roberto Burle Marx, Ruth Reeves, Laurel Reuter, Eleanor Roosevelt, Ben Shahn, Massimo Vignelli, Ulfert Wilke, and Claire Zeisler. Also, there are photographs of artwork by a wide range of artists.
Arrangement:
The Mildred Constantine papers are organized into 8 series.

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1947-1997 (Boxes 1, 6; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1964-2008 (Boxes 1, 6; 1.0 linear feet)

Series 3: Subject Files, 1964-2008 (Boxes 2-5; 3.3 linear feet)

Series 4: Writings, 1991-2008 (Box 5; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 5: Printed Material, 1961-2006 (Box 5; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 6: Photographs, 1993 (Box 5; 0.3 linear feet)

Series 7: Artwork, 1945 (Box 5; 1 folder)

Series 8: Scrapbook, circa 1940s (Box 6; 0.1 linear feet)
Biographical Note:
Curator and writer Mildred Constantine (1913-2008) was associated with the Museum of Modern Art's Department of Architecture and Design from 1943 to 1971. She then became an art consultant and independent curator, and wrote on fiber and textiles, decorative arts, photography, caricature and cartoons.

Mildred Constantine (known as "Connie") began her career at College Art Association. Hired as a stenographer in 1930, she soon was promoted to editorial assistant for Parnassus, the forerunner of Art Journal.

Constantine left the College Art Association in 1937 to study at New York University and earned BA and MA degrees. She then continued her education at the National Autonomous University of Mexico. In 1940, Constantine worked in the Office of Inter-American Affairs at the Library of Congress; it was there that she met René d'Harnoncourt.

Influenced by her 1936 travels in Mexico, Constantine's first curatorial effort was an exhibition of Latin American posters. Drawn from the collection of the Museum of Modern Art, the exhibition was held at the Library of Congress.

At the urging of René d'Harnoncourt, The Museum of Modern Art's Architecture and Design Department hired Constantine in 1943. The majority of her 28 year tenure at the museum was spent working with the department's founder, architect Philip Johnson. As a curator during the 1950s and 1960s, Constantine's innovative exhibitions brought lesser known portions of the museum's collection to public attention. Among her exhibtions were: "Words and Images," that focused on graphic design and posters; "Polio Posters," the first Museum of Modern Art show dedicated to social issues; "Olivetti: Design in Industry;" "Signs in the Street;" and "Lettering by Hand." She also published books on Art Nouveau, contemporary package design, and other subjects.

In 1971, Constantine left the Museum of Modern Art to become an independent curator and art consultant. Exhibitions included "Frontiers in Fiber: The Americans," and "Small Works in Fiber" with Jack Lenor Larsen. Tina Modotti: A Fragile Life, Constantine's book on the photographer, actress, model, and political activist, appeared in 1974. That same year, she and Alan Fern produced Revolutionary Soviet Film Posters that focused on works from the 1920s. Her last published work, Whole Cloth, was written with Laurel Reuter and published in 1997. Constantine continued to research and write, and at the time of her death was working on a large, international survey of the study of thread.

Mildred Constantine and Ralph W. Bettelheim (1909-1993) were married for 50 years. They had two daughters, Judith and Vicki.

Mildred Constantine died from heart failure on December 10, 2008, at home in Nyack, New York.
Related Material:
Oral history interviews with Mildred Constantine were conducted for the Archives of American Art by Harlan Phillips, 1965 October 15, and by Paul Cummings, 1976 May 3-1976 August 26.
Provenance:
The papers were donated to the Archives in 2009 by Mildred Constantine's daughters, Judith Bettelheim and Vicki McDaniel.
Restrictions:
Use of origininal material requires an appointment. 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.
Topic:
Film posters, Russian  Search this
Textile fabrics in art  Search this
Curators -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Scrapbooks
Photographs
Illustrated letters
Transcripts
Video recordings
Interviews
Citation:
Mildred Constantine papers, 1945-2008. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.consmild
See more items in:
Mildred Constantine Papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-consmild
Online Media:

[Rosalie Berkowitz collection of photographs]

Creator:
Berkowitz, Rosalie  Search this
Names:
American Federation of Arts  Search this
Berkowitz, Sidney -- Photographs  Search this
Brandt, Warren, 1918- -- Photographs  Search this
Cherry, Herman -- Photographs  Search this
Cramer, Konrad, 1888-1963 -- Photographs  Search this
Cumming, Burton -- Photographs  Search this
Hubbell, Carl -- Photographs  Search this
Kuniyoshi, Sara Mazo -- Photographs  Search this
Kuniyoshi, Yasuo, 1889-1953 -- Photographs  Search this
Luks, George Benjamin, 1867-1933 -- Photographs  Search this
Magafan, Ethel, 1916-1993 -- Photographs  Search this
Martin, Fletcher, 1904-1979 -- Photographs  Search this
Moore, Bill -- Photographs  Search this
Pike, John, 1911-1979 -- Photographs  Search this
Pike, Zella -- Photographs  Search this
Price, Vincent, 1911-1993 -- Photographs  Search this
Rosen, Charles, 1878-1950 -- Photographs  Search this
Shubert, Katherine Schmidt, 1898-1978 -- Photographs  Search this
Small, Amy -- Photographs  Search this
Spaeth, Eloise -- Photographs  Search this
Speicher, Eugene E. (Eugene Edward), 1883-1962 -- Photographs  Search this
Taylor, Francis Henry, 1903-1957 -- Photographs  Search this
Turnbull, James Barre, 1909-1976 -- Photographs  Search this
Walters, Carl, 1883-1955 -- Photographs  Search this
Wickiser, Ralph L. (Ralph Lewanda), 1910- -- Photographs  Search this
Photographer:
Stowall Studios (Firm: Woodstock, N.Y.)  Search this
Siegel, Adrian  Search this
Extent:
13 Items (photographic prints, b&w, 34 x 26 cm. and smaller)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Date:
[1927-1950]
Scope and Contents:
REEL 1817-1818 AND SCANNED: One is of Berkowitz's teacher, George Luks, in his studio, 1927 (frame 784). Two were taken at an American Federation of Arts convention, ca. 1950, including one of Berkowitz's husband, Sidney, with Burton Cumming (fr. 1288-89), and one of Eloise Spaeth, Vincent Price, Francis Henry Taylor, and an unidentified man (fr. 1313-1314). Four are of groups of artists at Woodstock, ca. 1949, including one of Herman Cherry (misidentified as Cheney on the microfilm), Ethel Magafan, Charles Rosen, and Sidney Berkowitz all in costume (fr. 1319-1320) [same image in Konrad and Florence Cramer papers, reel 1203, fr. 988-989], one of Konrad Cramer playing a guitar with two other unidentified men (fr. 1280), one of the Berkowitzs, Yasuo Kuniyoshi, Ralph Wickiser (identified as Wictheissen on microfilm), Fletcher Martin, James Turnbull, Warren Brandt, Sara Kuniyoshi, and Amy Small (fr. 1327-1328). Three photographs of Kuniyoshi taken by Adrian Siegel, ca. 1950 (fr. 710-14) and one of him with his first wife, Katherine Schmidt, taken by Stowall Studios, ca. 1940 (fr. 1304-1305) are also included. Three photos are oversize: one of Eugene Speicher at a party in Woodstock, ca. 1950 (fr. 1131-1133), one of John and Zella Pike in costume (fr. 1000-1002), and one of John Pike, Carl Walters, Bill Moore, and Carl Hubbell in Woodstock, ca. 1949 (fr. 38-39). All photos were previously microfilmed under Photos of Artists II, and have subsequently been scanned and returned to the Berkowitz photo collection.
Biographical / Historical:
Berkowitz was a painter and an art consultant; New York, N.Y. Member of Woodstock Artists Association.
Provenance:
Donated 1976 and 1979 by Rosalie Berkowitz. Microfilmed in 1980 as part of AAA's Photographs of Artists-Collection II and scanned in 2003.
Topic:
Artists -- New York State -- Woodstock -- Photographs  Search this
Identifier:
AAA.berkrosa
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-berkrosa

Avis Berman research material on Katharine Kuh

Creator:
Berman, Avis  Search this
Names:
Arensberg, Walter, 1878-1954  Search this
Dale, Chester, b. 1883  Search this
Duchamp, Marcel, 1887-1968  Search this
Harmon, Lily, 1912-  Search this
Kaufmann, Edgar, 1910-1989  Search this
Kuh, Katharine  Search this
Lebrun, Rico, 1900-1964  Search this
Neumann, J. B. (Jsrael Ber)  Search this
Rich, Daniel Catton, 1904-1976  Search this
Tobey, Mark  Search this
Extent:
3 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Interviews
Date:
1939-2006
Summary:
The Avis Berman research material on art dealer and curator Katharine Kuh measures 3.0 linear feet and dates from 1939 to 2006. The materials were compiled by art historian Avis Berman in preparing Katharine Kuh's memoir, which was published posthumously as My Love Affair with Modern Art: Behind the Scenes with a Legendary Curator. The collection includes Katharine Kuh's files; Kuh's drafts, manuscripts and interviews for her memoir; and Avis Berman's files relating to the book's publication. Also included is memorabilia.
Scope and Content Note:
The Avis Berman research material on art dealer and curator Katharine Kuh measures 3.0 linear feet and dates from 1939 to 2006. The materials were compiled by art historian Avis Berman in preparing Katharine Kuh's memoir, which was published posthumously as My Love Affair with Modern Art: Behind the Scenes with a Legendary Curator. The collection includes Katharine Kuh's files; Kuh's drafts, manuscripts and interviews for her memoir; and Avis Berman's files relating to the book's publication. Also included is memorabilia.

The Katharine Kuh files contain correspondence; exhibition files; writings and notes; and Kuh's interview with Lily Harmon on J. B. Neumann. Correspondents include Walter Arensberg, Marcel Duchamp, and Edgar Kaufmann. Also included is the scattered correspondence of Daniel Catton Rich with Walter Arensberg, Chester Dale, Katharine Kuh, Samuel Marx, and others. Exhibition files pertain to exhibitions curated by Katharine Kuh for the Louise and Walter Arensberg Collection and one-man shows for Rico Lebrun and Mark Tobey, respectively.

Sorting Out and Summing Up: Episodes in An Art Odyssey contains Katharine Kuh's draft versions of book chapters; her manuscripts and interviews; and drafts of chapters that were not incorporated in the published memoir. Also included are manuscripts for the memoir and an annotated version of Avis Berman's interview with Kuh.

The Avis Berman files include correspondence, writings, printed material, clippings, press releases, and miscellaneous printed material. Files document Berman's activities concerning the publication of the memoir.

Memorabilia consists of a monograph and a memorial booklet.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 4 series:

Series 1: Katharine Kuh Files, 1944-2003 (Box 1; 0.3 linear feet)

Series 2: -- Sorting Out and Summing Up: Episodes in an Art Odyssey -- by Katharine Kuh, 1939-2006 (Boxes 1-3; 2.0 linear feet)

Series 3: Avis Berman Files, 1950s-2006 (Box 3; 0.6 linear feet)

Series 4: Memorabilia, 1976, 1977 (0.1 linear feet)
Biographical Note:
Writer and art historian, Avis Berman lives and works in New York City. Berman was a close friend of Katharine Kuh's and is Kuh's literary executor. Berman compiled Katharine Kuh's research materials for the memoir that she was working on at the time of her death; the book was subsequently published as My Love Affair with Modern Art: Behind the Scenes with a Legendary Curator in 2006.

Katharine Kuh (1904-1994) was a curator and art dealer born in St. Louis, Missouri. She received her Bachelor of Arts from Vassar College in 1925, where she studied art history under Alfred Barr. In 1928, she earned her Master's in Art History at the University of Chicago. As a graduate student, Kuh developed an interest in modern art, particularly the work of European artists.

Kuh married George Kuh, a businessman in 1930. She and Kuh divorced six years later.

In 1935, she established the Katharine Kuh Gallery in Chicago. The gallery was dedicated to featuring the works of contemporary European and American painters and sculptors, such as Alexander Archipenko, Alexei Jawlensky, Wassily Kandinsky, Gyorgy Kepes, Paul Klee, Gaston Lachaise, Fernand Léger, Carlos Mérida, Joan Miro, Lazlo Moholy-Nagy, Pablo Picasso, as well as Charles Biederman, Alexander Calder, Stuart Davis, and Isamu Noguchi, among others. The Katharine Kuh Gallery was one of the first galleries in Chicago to show photography as art. Kuh held exhibitions for Ansel Adams, Eliot Porter, Edward Weston, and she also showed the photographs of Gyorgy Kepes and Man Ray.

At the gallery, Kuh taught classes on an informal basis to individuals interested in modern art. During this period, she spent her summers as a Visiting Professor of Art History at the University School of Fine Arts of San Miguel in Guanajuarto, Mexico (1938-1940). With the onset of America's involvement in World War II, Kuh realized that the war would curtail her contact with many of the European artists whose works she had promoted and in 1942, she decided to close the gallery.

In 1943, Katharine Kuh took a position in the public relations department at the Art Institute of Chicago. The following year, Kuh was asked to take over the Gallery of Art Interpretation at the Art Institute. Later she was appointed the Curator of Painting and Sculpture; in this role, she developed a close collaborative relationship with the Director of the Art Institute, Daniel Catton Rich. From 1946-1953, she served as the Editor of the Art Institute of Chicago Quarterly.

She left the Art Institute in 1959 and settled in New York City. She served as an art editor at the Saturday Review and World Magazine. She was also an art consultant for the First National Bank of Chicago from 1968-1979.

Katharine Kuh traveled extensively and often wrote about the art of the places she visited such as Sicily, Turkey, and the Yucatan. In the 1940s Kuh developed an interest in the wood carvings of the Indian tribes in the Pacific Northwest. The University of Alaska awarderd her an honorary doctorate for her efforts to preserve the indigenous artwork of the region's Native Americans.

Her publications on twentieth-century art included: Art Has Many Faces (1951), The Artist's Voice: Talks with Seventeen Artists (1962), Break-up: The Core of Modern Art (1965), and The Open Eye: In Pursuit of Art (1971). Kuh also wrote the catalog that accompanied the "Fernand Léger Retrospective at the Art Institute of Chicago" (1953). At the time of her death, Katharine Kuh had completed a final draft of her memoir, which she had tentatively titled, Sorting Out and Summing Up: Episodes in an Art Odyssey.

In 1994, Katharine Kuh died in New York City.
Related Material:
The Archives of American Art holds the Katharine Kuh papers, 1908-1994. Also found in the Archives of American Art is an oral history interview with Katharine Kuh conducted by Avis Berman, March 18, 1982-March 23, 1983. Additional Katharine Kuh material is located at the Yale Collection of American Literature, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library.
Provenance:
The Avis Berman Research Material, 1939-2006 was donated to the Archives of American Art by Avis Berman, an art historian and literary executor of Katharine Kuh's estate in 2007.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Rights:
The donor has retained all intellectual property rights, including copyright, that they may own.
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:
Art dealers -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
Topic:
Art, Modern  Search this
Curators -- Illinois-Chicago  Search this
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Citation:
Avis Berman research material on Katharine Kuh, 1939-2006. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.bermavis3
See more items in:
Avis Berman research material on Katharine Kuh
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-bermavis3

Theodore F. Wolff papers

Creator:
Wolff, Theodore F.  Search this
Names:
Diebenkorn, Richard, 1922-1993  Search this
Donati, Enrico, 1909-2008  Search this
Hogue, Alexandre, 1898-  Search this
Johnston, Ynez, 1920-  Search this
Kohlmeyer, Ida, 1912-1997  Search this
Landeck, Armin, 1905-  Search this
Miller, Melissa  Search this
Natkin, Robert, 1930-  Search this
Stamos, Theodoros, 1922-1997  Search this
Tacha, Athena, 1936-  Search this
Turrell, James  Search this
Witkin, Jerome  Search this
Extent:
8 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Sketches
Video recordings
Sound recordings
Photographs
Interviews
Date:
1920-2013
bulk 1977-2013
Summary:
The papers of art critic, writer, and painter Theodore F. Wolff measure 8 linear feet and date from 1920-2013, with the bulk of the material dating from 1977-2013. The collection documents Wolff's career through biographical material, correspondence, interviews, writings, subject files, printed material, a small amount of artwork, and photographs.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of art critic, writer, and painter Theodore F. Wolff measure 8 linear feet and date from 1920-2013, with the bulk of the material dating from 1977-2013. The collection documents Wolff's career through biographical material, correspondence, interviews, writings, subject files, printed material, a small portion of artwork, and photographs.

Biographical material consists of biographical data, curriculum vitae, and awards. Included are outgoing and incoming letters that document Wolff's activities as an art critic, appraiser, and fine arts consultant. A large portion of his correspondence is with artists. Among the correspondents are Richard Diebenkorn, Alexander Hogue, Ynez Johnston, Armin Landeck, Melissa Miller, Robert Natkin, Theodoros Stamos, Athena Tachna, Jerome Witkin, and the writer Tom Wolfe. There is significant correspondence with Morris Graves, James Hubbell, Clyfford Still, and Stow Wengenroth relating to their work and Wolff's writings.

Interviews consist of three interviews with Theodore F. Wolff as well as a panel discussion with Wolff and other artists. Found are interviews with Enrico Donati and James Turrell. Recordings are on five sound cassettes and three videocassettes. Writings consist of Wolff's reviews, mostly tearsheets for The Christian Monitor and draft versions of a book. Also included are talks and lectures on art and art education recorded on seven videocassettes and six sound cassettes. Subject files document Wolff's professional interests and relate to his writing projects, exhibitions, talks, and presentations. Included are interviews with artists that were used by Theodore Wolff as source material.

Printed material includes Theodore F. Wolff's published critical writings on art, artists, and education. Included are exhibition catalogs, brochures, journals, and monographs. Artwork consists of seventeen sketches by Wolff done early in his career. Photographs are of Theodore F. Wolff and with friends and colleagues, many of them unidentified. Included are photographs of Wolff with Ida Kohlmeyer.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 8 series.

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1982-2013 (Box 1; 0.1 linear feet)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1920, 1951-2011 (Box 1; 0.75 linear feet)

Series 3: Interviews, circa 1990-2002 (Box 2; 0.1 linear feet)

Series 4: Writings, Talks, and Lectures, circa 1977-2005 (Boxes 2-4; 2.8 linear feet)

Series 5: Subject Files, circa 1940, 1964-2004 (Boxes 4-6; 1.8 linear feet)

Series 6: Printed Material, 1956-2006 (Boxes 6-8; 2.2 linear feet)

Series 7: Artwork, 1942-1948 (Box 7, 1 folder)

Series 8: Photographs, circa 1980-circa 2011 (Box 7; 0.25 linear feet)
Biographical / Historical:
Theodore F. Wolff (1926-2012) was an art critic, writer, and painter in New York City.

Wolff attended the University of Wisconsin, earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art Education in 1949 and a Masters degree in Art and Art History the following year. By the early 1950s, Wolff was living in San Francisco, where he began his professional career as a painter. In 1956, he and his wife, Collette Wolff, moved to New York. During this period, Wolff also worked as an art appraiser and fine arts consultant for collectors, galleries, and museums. In 1977, Wolff began writing art criticism for The Christian Science Monitor and held the post of art critic at the publication until 1990. In addition to his art columns to The Monitor, Wolff contributed critical and introductory essays on artists for exhibition catalogs and journals. Theodore F. Wolff taught and lectured on art and art education at museums, universities, and conferences. In 1982, he received the National Headliners Award for Consistently Outstanding Column on Art and the Art World Award for Distinguished Newspaper Art Criticism in 1983. In 1990, Theodore Wolff retired from The Christian Science Monitor. He devoted the latter part of his career to painting, writing, lecturing, and teaching.

Theodore F. Wolff died in 2012 in New York City. He is survived by his wife, Collette Wolff.
Provenance:
A small amount of material was donated in 1999 by Theodore F. Wolff. Additional papers were donated in 2013 by Collette Wolff, widow of Theodore F. Wolff.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment. 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:
Art critics -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Topic:
Painters -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Authors -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sketches
Video recordings
Sound recordings
Photographs
Interviews
Citation:
Theodore F. Wolff papers, 1920-2013, bulk 1977-2013. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.wolftheo
See more items in:
Theodore F. Wolff papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-wolftheo

Otto Wittmann papers

Creator:
Wittmann, Otto, 1911-2001  Search this
Names:
Hyde Collection  Search this
J. Paul Getty Museum  Search this
National Endowment for the Arts  Search this
Owens-Corning Fiberglas Corporation  Search this
Skidmore College  Search this
Toledo Museum of Art  Search this
United States. Army Air Forces  Search this
United States. Office of Strategic Services  Search this
Extent:
10.1 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Scrapbooks
Photographs
Date:
1932-1996
Summary:
The papers of museum director, art consultant and curator Otto Wittmann (1911-2001)date from 1932 to 1996 and measure 10.1 linear feet. The bulk of the collection consists of correspondence and other files concerning Wittmann's career as Director of the Toledo Museum of Art and as trustee and acting chief curator of the Getty Museum in Los Angeles. Eleven scrapbooks contain materials primarily relating to the activities of the Toledo Museum of Art, but also contain documentation of Wittmann's World War II service in the Art Looting Investigation Unit (ALIU) of the U.S. Office of Strategic Services, the precursor to the present day CIA. Also found within the papers are files relating to his work with the National Endownment of the Arts, Arts and Artifacts Indemnification Committee, scattered biographical information, and personal correspondence.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of museum director, art consultant and curator Otto Wittmannn (1911-2001)date from 1932 to 1996 and measure 10.1 linear feet. The bulk of the collection consists of correspondence and other files concerning Wittmannn's career as Director of the Toledo Museum of Art and as trustee and acting chief curator of the Getty Museum in Los Angeles. Eleven scrapbooks contain materials primarily relating to the activities of the Toledo Museum of Art, but also contain documentation of Wittmannn's World War II service in the Art Looting Investigation Unit (ALIU) of the U.S. Office of Strategic Services, the precursor to the present day CIA. Also found within the papers are files relating to his work with the National Endownment of the Arts, Arts and Artifacts Indemnification Committee, scattered biographical information, and personal correspondence.

Biographical information includes a biographical sketch and an index of an interview of Wittmannn by Richard Candida Smith. Correspondence is mostly personal and with family, friends, and colleagues.

Professional files include Wittmann's files from the Toledo Museum of Art that consist of general operations and administrative files from the director's office. Wittmann's role as an art consultant and advisor to the Owens Corning Fiberglass Corporation is documented, as well as his many affliations with professional arts associations, arts organizations, and other museums and institutions.

Files documenting Wittmann's consulting and curatorial work for the Getty Museum are arranged in a separate series and consist of chronological correspondence and scattered expense reports. Correpondence concerns the development of the Getty Museum's early art collecting policy and the general formation of the museum.

There seven files relating to Wittmann's work for the National Endowment for the Arts, Arts and Artifacts Indemnification Committee.

Eleven scrapbooks dating from 1932 to 1977 focus on a variety of subjects, including the Hyde Collection, Skidmore College, the U.S. Army Air Force, the Toledo Museum of Art, and the Getty Museum. Found within the scrapbooks are mixed formats, such as correspondence, biographical information, clippings, brochures, and photographs. The scrapbook dating from 1932 to April 1959 contains scattered photographs from Wittmannn's service in the Art Looting Investigation Unit (ALIU) of the U.S. Office of Strategic Services.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 6 series:

Series 1: Biographical Information, 1995-1996 (Box 1; 2 folders)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1959-1990 (Box 1; 0.6 linear feet)

Series 3: Professional Files, 1947-1986 (Boxes 1-6, OV18; 5.2 linear feet)

Series 4: Getty Museum Files, 1978-1991 (Boxes 6-9; 1.7 linear feet)

Series 5: National Endowment for the Arts, Arts and Artifacts Indemnity Files, 1976 (Box 9; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 6: Scrapbooks, 1932-1977 (Boxes 10-17; 2.4 linear feet)
Biographical Note:
Otto Wittmann (1911-2001) was director of the Toledo Museum of Art in Toledo Ohio from 1959-1976. He left Toledo to work as an arts consultant, trustee, and acting chief curator for the Getty Museum in Los Angeles from 1978 though 1989. During World War II, he served in the Army Air Force and as a special intelligence officer assigned to locate and return works of art looted by the Nazis.

Otto Wittmann was born in Kansas City, Missouri on September 1, 1911. He graduated from Harvard University with a fine arts degree in 1933 and returned to Kansas City to become the Curator of Prints at the Rockhill Nelson Gallery of Art, the first art museum in the city. Later, he enrolled at Skidmore College for graduate studies and worked at The Hyde Collection in Glen Falls, New York.

During World War II, Wittmann served as a Major with the Air Force in the Air Transport Command. He was transferred to the Art Looting Investigation Unit (ALIU) in Washington, D.C. under the Office of Strategic Services. He spent long periods in Paris and Munich assisting with looted art recovery, investigating transactions in Sweden and Switzerland, and working with the collection centers set up in France. Years later, at the Toledo Museum of Art, he curated an exhibition of recovered artwork, and invited the U.S. Army members that assisted with protecting the artwork.

After the war, Wittmann accepted a position at the Toledo Museum of Art (TMA), working there for thirty years and as director from 1959-1976. During his tenure, he tripled the museum's collection of artwork and expanded its exhibition space. Under his direction, the museum was one of the first American museums to display sculpture, painting, furniture, and decorative arts in one setting.

In 1978, the Getty Museum in Los Angeles hired Wittmann as an acquisitions consultant as the museum began to spend the huge billion dollar trust left behind by J. P. Getty. Many institutions and the art market in general were nervous that the Getty's new and huge purchasing power would drive up prices and shut out other institutions and museums from acquiring works of art. Wittmann, however, steadied the Getty's purchases and kept prices competitive enough so that other museums could outbid him if they desired. Within a year, he was appointed to trustee and, shortly thereafter, as acting chief curator until 1983. The Getty named Wittmann a trustee emeritus in 1989.

Otto Wittmann was among the first museum professionals to encourage the establishment of Federal programs for the arts. He was one of the founding members of the National Council on the Arts and served on the museum advisory panel for the National Endowment for the Arts and on the arts advisory panel for the Internal Revenue Service. He was the first chairman of the Advisory Committee to the Federal Council of Arts and Humanities responsible for implementing the intial programs of the Federal Arts Indemnity Act. He was active in many national professional arts associations.

In 1947, Otto Wittmann married Margaret Hill, with whom he had two sons, John and William. Wittmannn died in 1997 in Montecito, California.
Related Material:
The Archives of American Art has an oral history interview with Otto Wittmann conducted by Paul Cummings on August 19-20, 1976, and another conducted by Thomas Carr Howe on October 25, 1976.
Provenance:
Otto Wittmann donated his papers to the Archives of American Art in 1991 and 1995.
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.
Occupation:
Art consultants  Search this
Topic:
Art -- Societies, etc. -- United States  Search this
Art museums -- Ohio -- Toledo  Search this
Art museum directors -- Ohio -- Toledo  Search this
Museum directors -- Ohio-Toledo  Search this
Curators -- Ohio -- Toledo  Search this
Genre/Form:
Scrapbooks
Photographs
Citation:
Otto Wittmann papers, 1932-1996. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.wittotto
See more items in:
Otto Wittmann papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-wittotto

Alice Yamin papers

Creator:
Yamin, Alice  Search this
Names:
Landmark Gallery (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Aach, Herbert, 1923-1985  Search this
Aziz, Barbara Nimri  Search this
Bernard, Frank S.  Search this
Bolotowsky, Ilya, 1907-  Search this
Briggs, Ernest, 1923-  Search this
Brody, Lily  Search this
Bultman, Fritz, 1919-1985  Search this
De Kooning, Elaine  Search this
Fromboluti, Sideo, 1921-  Search this
Ginsberg, Henry  Search this
Glarner, Fritz, 1899-1972  Search this
Gottlieb, Adolph, 1903-1974  Search this
Grillo, John, 1917-  Search this
Johnson, Buffie  Search this
Katz, Alex, 1927-  Search this
Lipkind, Bill  Search this
Lipkind, Maria  Search this
Littlefield, William Horace, 1902-1969  Search this
Mason, Alice Trumbull, 1904-1971  Search this
McFadden, Elizabeth  Search this
Mumford, Daphne, 1934  Search this
Newman, Barnett, 1905-1970  Search this
Oeri, Georgine  Search this
Oeri-Sarasin, Gertrude  Search this
Pavia, Philip, 1915-2005  Search this
Rothko, Mark, 1903-1970  Search this
Schmid, Elsa, 1897-  Search this
Siskind, Aaron  Search this
Teller, Jane  Search this
Yamin, Leo  Search this
Extent:
2 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Date:
1927-1998
Summary:
The papers of painter, draftsperson, and art consultant Alice Yamin date from 1927-1998, and measure 2.0 linear feet. Found within the papers are letters from artists, writers, galleries, and CIGY-GEIGY Corporation for whom Yamin worked as an art consultant. The collection also contains exhibition files, printed material, and photographs of Yamin, family members, and colleagues.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of painter, draftsperson, and art consultant Alice Yamin date from 1927-1998, and measure 2.0 linear feet. Found within the papers are letters from artists, writers, galleries, and CIGY-GEIGY Corporation for whom Yamin worked as an art consultant. The collection also contains exhibition files, printed material, and photographs of Yamin, family members, and colleagues.

The most significant series consists of letter files, which also contain scattered printed material and photographs collected by Yamin, concerning specific individuals and organizations. Represented within the files are artists Herb Aach, Ilya Bolotowsky, Ernest Briggs, Lily Brody, Fritz Bultman, Elaine DeKooning, Sideo Fromboluti, Fritz Glarner, Adolph Gottlieb, John Grillo, Buffie Johnson, Alex Katz, William H. Littlefield, Alice Trumbull Mason, Elizabeth McFadden, Daphne Mumford, Barnett Newman, Philip Pavia, Mark Rothko, Elsa Schmid, and Jane Teller; curator Henry Ginsburg; writers Barbara Nimri Aziz, Georgine Oeri, Gertrud Oeri-Sarasin, and Leo Yamin; and galleries including the Ingber Gallery and the Landmark Gallery. There are also letter files concerning the CIGY-GEIGY Corporation; for Alice Yamin's brother, businessman Frank S. Bernard, and the town of Chilmark, Massachusetts, where the Yamins spent their summers. Even though Yamin's responses to the letters are not included in the collection, this series illustrates the wide range of her friendships and associates in the art business.

Also found are exhibition files containing letters, prospectuses, business records such as loan agreements, clippings, and exhibition announcements and catalogs concerning the inclusion of Yamin's art work primarily in group exhibitions. Printed material consists of miscellaneous clippings, and exhibition announcements and catalogs that do not relate to the exhibition files, as well as miscellaneous booklets, brochures, and a copy of the book American Drawings, Watercolors, Pastels, and Collages published by the Corcoran Gallery of Art which contains a reproduction of Yamin's work. Photographs are of Yamin, family members, and colleagues including Bill and Maria Lipkind, and Aaron Siskind.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into 4 series. Letter files pertaining to specific individuals and organizations are arranged alphabetically; miscellaneous letters, exhibition files, printed material, and photographs are arranged chronologically.

Series 1: Letter Files, 1927-1998 (Boxes 1-2; 1.5 linear feet)

Series 2: Exhibition Files, 1956-1982 (Box 2; 18 folders)

Series 3: Printed Material, 1949-1992 (Box 2; 22 folders)

Series 4: Photographs, 1923-1978 (Box 2; 2 folders)
Biographical Note:
Alice Bernard was born on April 8, 1905 in Paris, France. She was brought to the United States as a child and spent most of her life in New York City. She married writer Leo Yamin who died on January 20, 1999.

Alice Yamin was a painter and draftsperson influenced by Abstract Expressionism. Beginning in 1950, she worked with a carbon medium, primarily producing dramatic black and white works on paper. She was also an art consultant for the international chemical firm CIBA-GEIGY Corporation that began collecting contemporary art in 1959 when it moved its headquarters from Manhattan to Ardsley, New York, a suburb of New York City.

Alice Yamin died on April 4, 2002.
Provenance:
The Alice Yamin papers were donated in 1981 by the artist and in 2002 by Harry Smith, her nephew.
Restrictions:
The collection is open for research. Use 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:
Painters -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Consultants -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Painting -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Draftsman -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Citation:
Alice Yamin papers, 1927-1998. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.yamialic
See more items in:
Alice Yamin papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-yamialic
Online Media:

Margit Varga papers

Creator:
Varga, Margit, 1908-2005  Search this
Names:
Painters and Sculptors' Gallery (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Extent:
2 Linear feet ((on a partial microfilm reel))
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Scrapbooks
Sketchbooks
Date:
1931-1985
Scope and Contents:
Seven scrapbooks (1931-1982), annotated sketchbooks and other materials cover Margit Varga's career. One scrapbook documents the activities of the Painters and Sculptors' Gallery, 2 contain photographs of Varga and printed material concerning her work as Art Director at LIFE magazine, and 4 have photographs of Varga's paintings, clippings, exhibition announcements and catalogs, and a few letters concerning Varga's career as a painter. Other materials include 2 biographical accounts (1970, 1982), an outline for the Time-Life book AMERICA'S ARTS AND SKILLS, annotated sketchbooks (1955-1984), clippings (1941-1980), exhibition catalogs (1938-1985), and covers for 3 of Varga's books.
Biographical / Historical:
Art director and painter; New York, N.Y. Born in New York City of Hungarian parents, Varga studied at the National Academy of Design and received art training at the Art Students League with Boardman Johnson and Robert Laurent. In 1931, frustrated by the indifference of art dealers to works by younger artists, she opened a cooperative Painters and Sculptors' Gallery, which stayed in business for 3 years. Beginning in 1936, Varga worked for many years for LIFE magazine. In 1960, she became art consultant for TIME, Inc.
Provenance:
Lent for microfilming 1988 by Margit Varga.
Restrictions:
The Archives of American art does not own the original papers. Use is limited to the microfilm copy.
Occupation:
Art directors -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Painters -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Topic:
Cooperative societies -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Painting, Modern -- 20th century -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Function:
Art galleries, Commercial -- New York (State) -- New York
Genre/Form:
Scrapbooks
Sketchbooks
Identifier:
AAA.vargmarg
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-vargmarg

Regina Stewart papers

Creator:
Stewart, Regina Serniak, 1942-  Search this
Names:
New York Artists Equity Association  Search this
Blackburn, Robert Hamilton, 1920-  Search this
Candell, Victor, 1903-1977  Search this
Facci, Domenico, 1916-1994  Search this
Kennedy, Edward Moore, 1932-2009  Search this
Kuniyoshi, Sara Mazo  Search this
McMurtry, Larry  Search this
Stewart, Jack, 1926-2005  Search this
Extent:
0.8 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Scrapbooks
Sketches
Date:
1959-2010
Summary:
Three scrapbooks, 1959-2010, assembled by Regina Serniak Stewart document her career as a costume designer, painter, board member and Executive Director of the New York Artists Equity Association.
Scope and Content Note:
Three scrapbooks, 1959-2010, assembled by Regina Serniak Stewart (b. 1942) document her career as a costume designer, painter, board member and Executive Director of the New York Artists Equity Association.

The scrapbooks contain: letters from Robert Blackburn, Victor Candell, Domenico Facci, Edward M. Kennedy, Sara M. Kuniyoshi, Larry McMurtry, Jack Stewart, and letters from various museums and galleries; costume sketches, 1963-1974, for the Paterson, New Jersey Lyric Opera Theatre; curriculum vitae, awards and profiles of the artist; photographs of Stewart, her work, and events; and printed material including clippings, articles, programs, brochures, flyers, and exhibition catalogs. The collection also includes some loose printed materials consisting of collectors' guides to kitchen utensils and stoneware co-written by Stewart and an article and exhibition catalog about her painting.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 2 series:

Series 1: Scrapbooks, 1959-2010 (Boxes 1-2; 0.7 linear ft.)

Series 2: Printed Materials, circa 1977, 2003-2008 (Box 2; 0.1 linear ft.)
Biographical Note:
Regina Serniak Stewart (b. 1942), a painter, administrator, and writer in New York City is the Executive Director of the New York Artists Equity Association.

Stewart is a graduate of the Cooper Union School of Art and Achitecture whose paintings have been exhibited in New York and throughout the United States. In addition to painting, Ms. Stewart was a set and costume designer for the Paterson Lyric Opera Theatre, a jewelry designer, an art consultant, and an art instructor. She was elected to the board of the New York Artists Equity Association in 1989 and is now Executive Director.
Provenance:
Donated by Regina Stewart, July 27, 2010.
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.
Occupation:
Arts administrators -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Collagists -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Topic:
Women artists -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Costume designers  Search this
Painters -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Scrapbooks
Sketches
Citation:
The Regina Stewart papers. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.stewregi
See more items in:
Regina Stewart papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-stewregi

Stable Gallery records

Creator:
Stable Gallery  Search this
Names:
New York School of poets and painters  Search this
Groh, Alan, 1923-1996  Search this
Scull, Robert, 1917-1986 -- Art collections  Search this
Ward, Eleanor, 1912-1984  Search this
Extent:
2.9 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Drawings
Video recordings
Sketchbooks
Sound recordings
Photographs
Date:
1916-1999
bulk 1953-1970
Summary:
The Stable Gallery records measure 2.9 linear feet and are dated 1916-1999 (bulk 1953-1970). The gallery was known for its representation of the New York School. Records consist mainly of artist files containing biographical notes, correspondence, price lists, sales and payment information, printed matter, and photographs. A small number of gallery administrative and financial records are included, along with printed matter, photographs, and personal papers and estate records of gallery founder and owner Eleanor Ward. There are also reminiscences by gallery owner Eleanor Ward and her assistant Alan Groh, a sound cassette recording of Eleanor Ward, and a videoreel (1/2 inch) documentary of a 1973 Sotheby auction of works from the Robert C. Scull collection.
Scope and Content Note:
The Stable Gallery records measure 2.9 linear feet and are dated 1916-1999 (bulk 1953-1970). The gallery was known for its representation of the New York School. Records consist mainly of artist files containing biographical notes, correspondence, price lists, sales and payment information, printed matter, and photographs. A small number of gallery administrative and financial records are included, along with printed matter, photographs, personal papers, and estate records of gallery founder and owner Eleanor Ward. There are also reminiscences by gallery owner Eleanor Ward and her assistant Alan Groh, a sound cassette recording of Eleanor Ward, and a videoreel (1/2 inch) documentary of a 1973 Sotheby auction of works from the Robert C. Scull collection.

The Stable Gallery's administrative records includes both general correspondence and copious letters from Eleanor Ward to Alan Groh, her assitant regarding gallery business, lists, floor plans, financial records, printed matter, and photographs of unidentified artwork and exhibition installations. There are also reminiscences by gallery owner Eleanor Ward and Alan Groh, a cassette recording of Eleanor Ward, and a film recording of a 1973 Sotheby auction of works from the Robert C. Scull collection. Additional Stable Gallery administrative and financial information, as well as related printed matter is included with the artist files.

Artist files contain biographical notes, correspondence, price lists, printed matter, and photographs of artists and artwork. The correspondence includes memoranda regarding payments to artists and sales information. Among the printed matter is documentation of the Stable Gallery and other exhibitions, reviews, and miscellaneous articles. Unfortunately, no records about the famous Stable Annuals held between 1953 and 1957 survive.

Artwork consists of 4 sketchbooks and loose sheets with charcoal drawings by unidentified artist(s).

The Eleanor Ward papers include miscellaneous personal papers and records concerning her estate. Photographs in the series are of Eleanor Ward, friends and family, parties, and the interior and exterior of Ward's Connecticut house.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as four series:

Series 1: Administrative Records, 1955-1986 (0.5 linear feet; Boxes 1, 4, 5)

Series 2: Artist Files, 1952-1997 (1.6 linear feet; Boxes 1-2)

Series 3: Artwork, circa 1955-1970 (3 folders; Box 4)

Series 4: Eleanor Ward Papers, 1916-1999 (0.5 linear feet; Boxes 2-4, 5)
Historical Note:
Established in 1953 by Eleanor Ward (1911-1984), the Stable Gallery derived its name from its first home, a former livery stable on Seventh Avenue at West 58th Street, New York City. Long interested in art and recognized for her "good taste" and "flair," Mrs. Ward had vaguely considered the idea of opening her own gallery for some time and received encouragement from Christian Dior, with whom she had worked in Paris. In 1952, opportunity arose to lease a suitable building that would later become a gallery. At first, Ward and a friend sold mannequins and made the large, empty space available for fashion photography; in December, she operated a Christmas boutique for a few weeks.

The Stable Gallery opened in 1953 with an exhibition of work by Ward's friend Mike Mishke, a commercial artist. She then arranged for the Stable Gallery to host a sequel to the 1951 Ninth Street Show (the initial show, organized by the Club with financial assistance from Leo Castelli, was held in an empty store on Ninth Street). The New York Artists Annual, better known as the Stable Annual, was selected by the artists themselves; this well-attended, widely-reviewed, and influential exhibition continued until 1957. Participating artists included Philip Guston, Franz Kline, Willem deKooning, Robert Motherwell, Jackson Pollock, Robert Rauschenberg, Ad Reinhardt, Richard Stankiewicz, and Jack Tworkov.

The Stable Gallery soon became a gathering place for artists, including some not in Stable's "stable." Over the years, the Stable Gallery presented the first one-man shows of Robert Indiana, Cy Twombly, and Andy Warhol. Among the artists closely associated with the gallery were: Joseph Cornell, Edward Dugmore, John Ferren, Alex Katz, Conrad Marca-Relli, Marisol, Joan Mitchell, Isamu Noguchi, Richard Stankiewicz, Cy Twombly, Jack Tworkov, and Wilfred Zogbaum. The gallery was known for dramatic, somewhat theatrical installations, and occasionally presented exhibitions beyond its usual focus (photographs by Hans Namuth and pre-Columbian sculpture, which personally interested Ward).

When the block where the Stable Gallery stood was razed in 1960 to make way for a high rise apartment building, Mrs. Ward moved her gallery to 33 East 74th Street, where she was able to maintain an apartment for herself upstairs. Quite abruptly, Ward closed the Stable Gallery in 1970, noting changes in the art scene, growing commercialization, and a loss of enthusiasm that made the gallery merely a business for her. Alan Groh (1923-1996), who started as Eleanor Ward's assistant in 1956 and was eventually named gallery director, became director of A. M. Sachs Gallery. Mrs. Ward traveled widely and acted as an art consultant to selected clients.
Related Materials:
Also found in the Archives of American Art is an oral history interview with Eleanor Ward conducted by Paul Cummings, February 8, 1972.
Provenance:
The Stable Gallery records were the gift of the Estate of Eleanor Ward. In 1984, artist files were received from Alan Groh, executor of Ward's estate and her assistant at the Stable Gallery. Additional records were donated in 1997 by Buzz Miller on behalf of the Estate of Eleanor Ward; Mr. Miller was Alan Groh's partner and executor of his estate. Another addition was received in 1999 from Paul Gardner, executor of the Estate of Buzz Miller. A final addition of 0.2 liner feet was donated in 2019 by Nancy Berner, Alan Groh's niece.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
Rights:
The 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:
New York school of art  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- Exhibitions  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Function:
Art galleries, Commercial -- New York (State) -- New York
Genre/Form:
Drawings
Video recordings
Sketchbooks
Sound recordings
Photographs
Citation:
Stable Gallery records, 1916-1999, bulk 1953-1970. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.stabgall
See more items in:
Stable Gallery records
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-stabgall
Online Media:

Alan R. Solomon papers

Creator:
Solomon, Alan R., 1920-1970  Search this
Names:
Albright-Knox Art Gallery  Search this
Amsterdam (Netherlands). Stedelijk Museum  Search this
Art Gallery of Ontario  Search this
Artforum  Search this
Biennale di Venezia  Search this
Centro de Artes Visuales (Asunción, Paraguay)  Search this
Cornell University. -- Faculty  Search this
Expo 67 (Montréal, Québec)  Search this
Harvard University -- Students  Search this
Institute of Contemporary Art (Boston, Mass.)  Search this
Jewish Museum (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Leo Castelli Gallery  Search this
Los Once (Artists' group)  Search this
Pasadena Art Museum  Search this
San Francisco Art Institute  Search this
University of California (System)  Search this
Velvet Underground (Musical group)  Search this
Bontecou, Lee, 1931-  Search this
Castelli, Leo  Search this
Chamberlain, John, 1927-2011  Search this
Childs, Lucinda  Search this
Dine, Jim, 1935-  Search this
Duchamp, Marcel, 1887-1968  Search this
Dunn, Judith  Search this
Fahlström, Öyvind, 1928-1976  Search this
Finkelstein, Nat  Search this
Frankenthaler, Helen, 1928-2011  Search this
Greenberg, Clement, 1909-1994  Search this
Greenberg, Jeanine  Search this
Grisi, Laura  Search this
Hay, Alex  Search this
Hay, Deborah  Search this
Johns, Jasper, 1930-  Search this
Kron, Joan  Search this
Lichtenstein, Roy, 1923-1997  Search this
Louis, Morris, 1912-1962  Search this
MacElroy, Robert R.  Search this
Moore, Peter  Search this
Morris, Robert  Search this
Mulas, Ugo  Search this
Namuth, Hans  Search this
Newman, Barnett, 1905-1970  Search this
Noland, Kenneth, 1924-2010  Search this
Novick, Elizabeth  Search this
Oldenburg, Claes, 1929-  Search this
Oldenburg, Patty  Search this
Paxton, Steve  Search this
Picasso, Pablo, 1881-1973  Search this
Poons, Larry  Search this
Provinciali, Michele  Search this
Rainier, Yvonne  Search this
Rauschenberg, Robert, 1925-2008  Search this
Redon, Odilon, 1840-1916  Search this
Reed, Lou  Search this
Rosenquist, James, 1933-  Search this
Sabol, Audrey, 1922-  Search this
Schute, Terry  Search this
Scull, Ethel  Search this
Scull, Robert C.  Search this
Segal, George, 1924-2000  Search this
Sisler, Mary  Search this
Sonnabend, Ileana  Search this
Stella, Frank  Search this
Warhol, Andy, 1928-  Search this
Whitman, Robert  Search this
Extent:
9.9 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Drawings
Transcripts
Photographs
Interviews
Lithographs
Place:
Italy -- Venice
Date:
1907-1970
bulk 1944-1970
Summary:
The papers of New York art historian, museum director, curator, writer, and educator, Alan R. Solomon, measure 9.9 linear feet and date from 1907-1970, with the bulk of the material dating from 1944-1970. Through biographical material, correspondence, interview transcripts, writings and notes, teaching and study files, subject files, exhibition files, business records, printed material, and photographs, the collection documents Solomon's education, his early teaching appointments at Cornell University, and his subsequent direction of many diverse curatorial and research projects relating to contemporary American art, particularly the transition from Abstract Expressionism to later modern movements, and the thriving New York City art scene.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of New York art historian, museum director, curator, writer, and educator, Alan R. Solomon, measure 9.9 linear feet and date from 1907-1970, with the bulk of the material dating from 1944-1970. Through biographical material, correspondence, interview transcripts, writings and notes, teaching and study files, subject files, exhibition files, business records, printed material, and photographs, the collection documents Solomon's education, his early teaching appointments at Cornell University, and his subsequent direction of many diverse curatorial and research projects relating to contemporary American art, particularly the transition from Abstract Expressionism to later modern movements, and the thriving New York City art scene.

Biographical material includes résumés, an engagement book, and a monthly planning book from 1965, identification cards, and educational transcripts.

Correspondence documents Solomon's education at Harvard College and Harvard University, and his teaching appointments at Cornell University. Correspondence also provides some documentation of his involvement with museums and arts organizations, including the Jewish Museum, Stedlijk Museum, the San Francisco Art Institute, the University of California, and Centro de Artes Visuales; his submission of writings for publications including Artforum, Art International, and Konstrevy; and his relationships with artists and colleagues including Jim Dine, Joan Kron, Audrey Sabol, and Ileana Sonnabend. Also found is correspondence related to Solomon's work for Mary Sisler, who employed Solomon to sell her collection of artwork by Marcel Duchamp in the late 1960s.

One series comprises transcripts of interviews with many of the artists who were central to the transition from Abstract Expressionism to later modern movements that occurred in the 1950s and 1960s, such as Neo-Dada and Pop art. Artists represented in the interviews include Jim Dine, Helen Frankenthaler, Jasper Johns, Barnett Newman, Kenneth Noland, Claes Oldenburg, Robert Rauschenberg, Frank Stella, and Andy Warhol.

Solomon's writings include many of his essays for exhibition catalogs, magazines, and journals, and are in a combination of annotated manuscript and published formats. There are writings on Jim Dine, Barnett Newman, Robert Rauschenberg, and Jasper Johns, and on the new movements in theater and performance art of the 1960s. His writings also document the art history education which informed all of his later work, with the inclusion of papers written as a student and teacher, his honors thesis on Odilon Redon, and his dissertation on Pablo Picasso. This material is supplemented by notes, and teaching and study files, documenting courses taken and taught at Harvard and Cornell universities. Also found is the manuscript of the text for New York: The New Art Scene, accompanied by a partial published copy of the book and photographs by Ugo Mulas.

Solomon's subject files augment several of the other series, comprising material on various art related subjects and individual painters and sculptors, arranged alphabetically. Material found here includes printed matter documenting exhibitions and other events, scattered letters from artists, related writings, and photographs.

One series documents Solomon's involvement with the First New York Theater Rally, which he co-produced with Steve Paxton in 1965. This material includes a drawing each by Jim Dine and Alex Hay, pieces of a combine by Robert Rauschenberg, and photographs of the group including Dine, Hay, and Rauschenberg, as well as Lucinda Childs, Judith Dunn, Deborah Hay, Robert Morris, Claes Oldenburg, the Once Group, Steve Paxton, Yvonne Rainier, Alan Solomon, and Robert Whitman. The series includes multiple contact sheets of photos of First New York Theater Rally events, by Peter Moore, Elizabeth Novick, and Terry Schute.

Exhibition files document Solomon's role as an organizer and curator for some of his most well-known exhibitions, including American Painting Now (1967) for Expo '67 in Montreal; Andy Warhol (1966) at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston; Dine-Oldenburg-Segal (1967) at the Art Gallery of Ontario and Albright-Knox Gallery; the American exhibition at the 1964 Venice Biennale; Young Italians (1968) at the Institute of Contemporary Art; and Painting in New York 1944-1969, a major retrospective installed for the opening of the new Pasadena Art Museum in fall, 1969. Records include correspondence, lists and notes, financial records, printed material, and photographs of artists and installations, including a series by Ugo Mulas taken at the Venice Biennale.

Solomon's business records include lists, notes, contracts, expense forms, vouchers, purchase orders, and receipts. They provide scattered documentation of exhibition-related expenses and purchases of artwork, as well as Solomon's income from teaching appointments, lectures, honorariums, and writings. Amongst Solomon's general business records is an American Federation of Musicians agreement between the Institute of Contemporary Art and "Louis Reed," with booking agent Andy Warhol, for a performance by the Velvet Underground and Nico, performing as The Exploding Plastic Inevitable on October 29, 1966. This seemingly mundane item documents an event that accompanied Solomon's landmark Warhol exhibition of nearly forty iconic works, and the accompanying show by The Exploding Plastic Inevitable was hailed by the Boston Phoenix newspaper as one of the greatest concerts in Boston history.

Printed material includes announcements, catalogs, and posters for exhibitions and art related events, including two Jasper Johns lithographs for a 1960 exhibition at Galerie Rive Droite, and a 1963 exhibition at Leo Castelli Gallery. Also found are news clippings, press releases, and other publications.

Photographs are of Solomon, artists, friends and colleagues, exhibitions and other events, and artwork. They include snapshots of Solomon, and a series of photographs of him at various events and parties, many taken by Ugo Mulas, as well as a photo taken by Robert Rauschenberg of Ugo Mulas, Michele Provinciali, and Solomon. Additional photos by Ugo Mulas include some which were probably taken for New York: The New Art Scene, and a series of photos of Robert Rauschenberg and others at the Venice Biennale. Photos of artists include Lee Bontecou, John Chamberlain, Jim Dine, Marcel Duchamp, Öyvind Fahlström, Laura Grisi, Jasper Johns, Roy Lichtenstein, Morris Louis, Barnett Newman, Kenneth Noland, Claes and Patty Oldenburg, Larry Poons, James Rosenquist, George Segal, Frank Stella, and Andy Warhol and The Factory. Photos of others include Leo Castelli, Clement and Jeanine Greenberg, and Ethel and Robert Scull. Also found are photos of the exhibition Toward a New Abstraction (1963), at The Jewish Museum, photos of Venice, and photos of artwork by many of the above named, and other, artists. In addition to Ugo Mulas, photographers represented in this series include Nat Finkelstein, Robert R. McElroy, and Hans Namuth.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as eleven series.

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1938-1968 (5 folders; Box 1)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1930-1970 (0.66 linear feet; Box 1)

Series 3: Interviews, 1965-1969 (0.25 linear feet; Box 1)

Series 4: Writings and Notes, 1945-1969 (1.35 linear feet; Boxes 1-3, 11)

Series 5: Teaching and Study Files, 1944-1958 (0.25 linear feet; Box 3)

Series 6: Subject Files, 1907-1969 (2.92 linear feet; Boxes 3-6, 1, OV 12)

Series 7: First New York Theater Rally, 1963-1965 (0.15 linear feet; Boxes 6, 11)

Series 8: Exhibition Files, 1954-1969 (1.42 linear feet; Boxes 6-7, 11, OV 12)

Series 9: Business Records, 1945-1970 (0.3 linear feet; Boxes 7-8)

Series 10: Printed Material, 1914-1970 (0.8 linear feet; Boxes 8-9, OV 12)

Series 11: Photographs, circa 1951-circa 1970 (1.7 linear feet; Boxes 9-11, OV 13)
Biographical / Historical:
New York art historian, museum director, art consultant, educator, writer, and curator, Alan R. Solomon (1920-1970), organized over two hundred exhibitions in the course of his career. He was known for his skill in exhibition design, and for bringing the perception and understanding of an art historian to the field of contemporary art.

Solomon was born in Quincy, Massachusetts, and educated at Harvard College and Harvard Graduate School. In 1953, during his 1952-1962 tenure with the Cornell University department of art history, he established the Andrew Dickson White Museum of art. Solomon served as the museum's first director until 1961, whilst simultaneously pursuing his doctorate, which he received from Harvard University in 1962.

In 1962 Solomon was hired by the Jewish Museum in New York, New York, and immediately began to take the institution in a more contemporary direction, mounting Robert Rauschenberg's first retrospective in 1963, and a major Jasper Johns retrospective in 1964. Also, in 1963, Solomon was appointed the United States Commissioner for the 1964 Venice Biennale. He was determined to show "the major new indigenous tendencies, the peculiarly America spirt of the art" in works by two consecutive generations of artists, including Jasper Johns, Morris Louis, Kenneth Noland, and Robert Rauschenberg. With this in mind, and given the inadequacy of the existing space to house the installation he envisaged, Solomon secured a verbal agreement from Biennale officials to approve additional space for the American exhibition in an annex at the former American Consulate. The agreement was never formalized, however, and a series of administrative problems and controversies over the eligibility of the American submissions threatened to undermine Solomon's efforts. Nevertheless, Robert Rauschenberg became the first American to take the Grand Prize for foreign artist, and the attention garnered by the American exhibition monopolized press coverage of the Biennale. In response, Solomon stated publicly that "it is acknowledged on every hand that New York has replaced Paris as the world art capital."

Solomon subsequently left the Jewish Museum, having engendered resistance to leading the museum in a more experimental direction, away from the traditional Jewish educational aspects of its mission. In the mid-sixties he worked as a consultant and writer for a National Educational Television series entitled "U. S. A. Artists," which drew on artist interviews, many conducted by Solomon. He also wrote the text for Ugo Mulas's classic photographic study, New York: The New Art Scene (1967: Holt Rinehart and Winston).

In 1966 Solomon was hired by the United States Information Agency to organize the United States contribution to the Canadian World Exhibition in Montreal, known as Expo '67. His stunning American Painting Now installation placed large scale paintings by twenty-three artists, including Jim Dine, Ellsworth Kelly, Roy Lichtenstein, Barnett Newman, Claes Oldenburg, Robert Rauschenberg, and James Rosenquist, inside Buckminster Fuller's twenty-story Biosphere of Montreal.

Other important exhibitions organized by Solomon included Andy Warhol (1966) at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, which was only the second of two exhibitions dedicated to the artist; Dine-Oldenburg-Segal (1967) at the Art Gallery of Ontario and the Albright-Knox Art Gallery; and Young Italians (1968) at the Institute of Contemporary Art.

Solomon was also interested in contemporary theater and organized the First New York Theater Rally with Steve Paxton in 1965, a series of performances which combined new dance and a revival of the Happenings of the early 1960s, in which Claes Oldenburg, Jim Dine and others were involved.

Following a six-week appointment as a senior lecturer at the University of California, Irvine, in spring 1968, Solomon became chairman of the University's art department and director of the art gallery. His last exhibition, Painting in New York, 1944-1969 (1969-1970), was held at the Pasadena Art Museum and closed in January 1970, just a few weeks before Solomon's sudden death at the age of forty-nine.
Provenance:
The Leo Castelli Gallery served as executor of Solomon's estate, and donated his papers to the Archives of American Art in 1974 and 2007.
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:
Art historians -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Painters  Search this
Topic:
Abstract expressionism  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Art -- History -- Study and teaching  Search this
Performance art  Search this
Art, Abstract -- United States  Search this
Art -- Exhibitions  Search this
Art -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Authors -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Sculptors  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
Educators -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Curators -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Theater  Search this
Pop art  Search this
Museum directors -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Drawings
Transcripts
Photographs
Interviews
Lithographs
Citation:
Alan R. Solomon papers, 1907-1970, bulk 1944-1970. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.soloalan
See more items in:
Alan R. Solomon papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-soloalan
Online Media:

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