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Mel Casas papers

Creator:
Casas, Mel, 1929-2014  Search this
Names:
Con Safo (Group)  Search this
Extent:
1 Linear foot
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Date:
1963-1998
Summary:
The papers of San Antonio painter and educator Mel Casas measure 1 linear foot and date from 1963 to 1998. The collection is comprised of biographical material including files on the art collective Con Safo, correspondence regarding business and exhibitions, writings by Casas on Chicano art, printed materials documenting Casas's career and Con Safo events, and photographic materials, including photos and slides of Casas and others, his artwork, and an exhibition.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of San Antonio painter and educator Mel Casas measure 1 linear foot and date from 1963 to 1998. The collection is comprised of biographical material including files on the art collective Con Safo, correspondence regarding business and exhibitions, writings by Casas on Chicano art, printed materials documenting Casas's career and Con Safo events, and photographic materials, including photos and slides of Casas and others, his artwork, and an exhibition.

Of particular note are the files on Con Safo, including meeting minutes for two 1975 meetings, and copies of La Movida Con Safo numbers 1 and 2, which include records of the founding of the group and copies of defining documents of the Chicano art movement. Casas's writings, which express his ideas on Chicano art in diagrammatic form, are also of particular note.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as five series.

Series 1: Biographical Materials, 1975-1996 (Box 1; 4 folders)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1975-1993 (Box 1; 4 folders)

Series 3: Writings, 1973-1993 (Box 1; 0.9 folders)

Series 4: Printed Materials, 1963-1998 (Box 1-2, OVs 3-4; 0.7 linear feet)

Series 5: Photographic Materials, circa 1977 (Box 2; 2 folders)
Biographical / Historical:
Mel Casas (1929-2014) was a painter and educator in San Antonio, Texas.

Casas was born in El Paso in the historic El Segundo Barrio. After graduating from El Paso High School, he worked odd jobs before serving in the United States Army during the Korean War. Casas was wounded by a landmine in Korea and ultimately awarded the Purple Heart. After returning home he attended the University of Texas at El Paso and graduated in 1956. He subsequently earned a Master of Fine Art in 1958 from the University of the Americas in Mexico City.

Casas began his teaching career at Jefferson High School in El Paso where one of his students was artist Gaspar Enriquez. He went on to teach at San Antonio College and was chair of the art department there until his retirement in 1990.

Casas was a founder of the Chicano art movement and a key member of the art collective Con Safo with other founding members Felipe Reyes, Jose Esquivel, Rudy Treviño, and Roberto Ríos. Originally named El Grupo, the group's mission was to empower Chicano artists who were largely overlooked in the mainstream art world. In 1968 Casas penned the "Brown Paper Report," a manifesto explaining the meaning of Con Safo, Chicano, the "Brown Vision of America," and the group's use of the symbol "C/S." The report helped to define Con Safo as an organization and remains a fundamental document in the history of the Chicano art movement.

Casas is well-known for his series Humanscapes that includes 150 large-scale paintings produced between 1965 and 1989. This series, along with smaller works, has been exhibited throughout the United States and Mexico. Casas's work can be found in the permanent collections of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the San Antonio Museum of Art, and other collections worldwide.

Casas died in San Antonio, Texas, in 2014.
Related Materials:
Also at the Archives of American Art is an interview of Mel Casas conducted August 14-16, 1996 by Paul Karlstrom for the Archives of American Art.
Provenance:
The Mel Casas papers were donated by Mel Casas in 1981 and microfilmed as part of the Archives of American Art's Texas project. Additional papers were donated by Casas in 1999.
Restrictions:
This collection is open for research. Access to original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center.
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 teachers--Texas--San Antonio  Search this
Painters--Texas--San Antonio  Search this
Topic:
Hispanic American artists  Search this
Mexican American art  Search this
Mexican American artists  Search this
Chicano art movement  Search this
Citation:
Mel Casas papers, 1963-1998. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.casamel
See more items in:
Mel Casas papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-casamel
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Rudolf Staffel, 1987 July 17-August 6

Interviewee:
Staffel, Rudolf, 1911-2002  Search this
Interviewer:
Drutt, Helen Williams, 1930-  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Ceramics -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia  Search this
Glass craft -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia  Search this
Artisans -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia -- Interviews  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)13047
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)212101
AAA_collcode_staffe87
Theme:
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_212101

Oral history interview with Mordi Gassner, 1982 Apr. 16

Interviewee:
Gassner, Mordi, 1899-1995  Search this
Interviewer:
Pennington, Estill Curtis  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Art, American  Search this
Art teachers -- Virginia -- Drake's Branch -- Interviews  Search this
Designers -- Virginia -- Drake's Branch -- Interviews  Search this
Muralists -- Virginia -- Drake's Branch -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)12637
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)212689
AAA_collcode_gassne82
Theme:
Architecture & Design
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_212689
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Bror Utter, 1979 February 14

Interviewee:
Utter, Bror Alexander, 1913-1993  Search this
Interviewer:
Ferguson, Lisa  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Art, American  Search this
Painters -- Texas -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)13118
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)213250
AAA_collcode_utter79
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_213250

Juergen Strunck papers, 1970-1981

Creator:
Strunck, Juergen, 1943-  Search this
Subject:
Strunck, Gisela-Heidi  Search this
Topic:
Women sculptors -- Texas -- Dallas  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)9980
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)212675
AAA_collcode_strujuer
Theme:
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_212675

Oral history interview with Mel Casas, 1996 August 14 and 16

Interviewee:
Casas, Mel, 1929-2014  Search this
Interviewer:
Karlstrom, Paul J  Search this
Subject:
Almaraz, Carlos  Search this
Lomas Garza, Carmen  Search this
Incarnate Word College (San Antonio, Tex.)  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Painters -- Texas -- San Antonio -- Interviews  Search this
Mexican American artists -- Interviews  Search this
Mexican American art  Search this
Hispanic American artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)5449
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)216023
AAA_collcode_casas96
Theme:
Latino and Latin American
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_216023
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Harlan Butt, 2009 July 27-28

Interviewee:
Butt, Harlan, 1950-  Search this
Interviewer:
Riedel, Mija, 1958-  Search this
Subject:
Brooks, Jan  Search this
Glantz, Ken  Search this
Japanese tea ceremony  Search this
Kington, L. Brent (Louis Brent)  Search this
Lechtzin, Stanley  Search this
Moty, Eleanor  Search this
Paley, Albert  Search this
Pijanowski, Eugene  Search this
Pijanowski, Hiroko Sato  Search this
Pujol, Elliot  Search this
Scanga, Italo  Search this
Shirk, Helen Z.  Search this
Snyder, Gary  Search this
Staffel, Rudolf  Search this
Winokur, Robert  Search this
American Craft Council  Search this
Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts  Search this
Enamelist Society  Search this
Haystack Mountain School of Crafts  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Penland School of Crafts  Search this
Rhode Island School of Design  Search this
San Diego State University  Search this
Society of North American Goldsmiths  Search this
Southern Illinois University at Carbondale  Search this
Tyler School of Art  Search this
University of North Texas  Search this
Type:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Topic:
Art, Asian  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Art teachers -- Interviews  Search this
Buddhism  Search this
Metal-workers -- Texas -- Interviews  Search this
Weaving -- Study and teaching  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)15907
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)296475
AAA_collcode_butt09
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_296475
Online Media:

Blanche McVeigh papers, 1920-1970

Creator:
McVeigh, Blanche, 1895-1970  Search this
Subject:
Amler, W. King  Search this
Arms, John Taylor  Search this
Bywaters, Jerry  Search this
Reed, Doel  Search this
Walker, Maynard  Search this
Topic:
Women artists -- Texas  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)7969
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)210137
AAA_collcode_mcveblan
Theme:
Women
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_210137

Perry Nichols scrapbook, [ca. 1900-1971]

Creator:
Nichols, Perry B., 1911-1992  Search this
Type:
Scrapbooks
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)8092
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)210263
AAA_collcode_nichperr
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_210263

John Schrup and Sally Tobin papers, 1955-1980

Creator:
Schrup, John Edmund, 1937-  Search this
Schrup, Sally, 1941-  Search this
Topic:
Painting, American  Search this
Women painters -- Texas -- Dallas  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)10551
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)214025
AAA_collcode_schrjohn
Theme:
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_214025

Maude Folmar papers, 1954-1980

Creator:
Folmar, Maude, 1908-1993  Search this
Topic:
Painting, Modern -- 20th century -- Texas -- Austin  Search this
Women painters -- Texas -- Austin  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)8189
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)210360
AAA_collcode_folmmaud
Theme:
Women
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_210360

Wilfred Higgins papers, 1947-1981

Creator:
Higgins, Wilfred, 1919-  Search this
Type:
Scrapbooks
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)9014
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211203
AAA_collcode_higgwilf
Theme:
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211203

Paul Kelpe papers, 1927-1980

Creator:
Kelpe, Paul, 1902-1985  Search this
Topic:
Art, American  Search this
Art, Abstract  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)10532
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)214004
AAA_collcode_kelppaul
Theme:
Lives of American Artists
Chicago's Art-Related Archival Materials: A Terra Foundation Resource
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_214004

James Brooks and Charlotte Park papers, 1909-2010, bulk bulk 1930-2010

Creator:
Brooks, James, 1906-1992  Search this
Park, Charlotte, 1918-2010  Search this
Subject:
Gottlieb, Adolph  Search this
Bolotowsky, Ilya  Search this
Park, Charlotte  Search this
King, William  Search this
Guston, Philip  Search this
New York University  Search this
Southern Methodist University  Search this
United States  Search this
Kootz Gallery (N.Y.)  Search this
Type:
Sketchbooks
Sound recordings
Transcripts
Interviews
Drawings
Photographs
Diaries
Topic:
World War, 1939-1945  Search this
Painters -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Abstract expressionism  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)8955
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211142
AAA_collcode_broojame
Theme:
Lives of American Artists
Government Sponsorship of the Arts
Audio - Visual
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211142
Online Media:

Mel Casas papers, 1963-1998

Creator:
Casas, Mel, 1929-2014  Search this
Subject:
Con Safo (Group)  Search this
Topic:
Hispanic American artists  Search this
Mexican American art  Search this
Mexican American artists  Search this
Chicano art movement  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)5448
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)212917
AAA_collcode_casamel
Theme:
Latino and Latin American
Lives of American Artists
American Art and Artists in a Global Context
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_212917
Online Media:

Stephen J. Daly papers, 1980-1984

Creator:
Daly, Stephen J. (Stephen Jeffrey), 1942-  Search this
Topic:
Sculpture, Modern -- 20th century -- Texas -- Austin  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)10065
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)212927
AAA_collcode_dalystep
Theme:
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_212927

Philip John Evett papers, 1961-1982

Creator:
Evett, Philip John, 1923-  Search this
Subject:
Marion Koogler McNay Art Institute  Search this
Topic:
Sculpture, Modern -- 20th century -- Texas -- San Antonio  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)10518
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)213948
AAA_collcode_evetphil
Theme:
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_213948

Gaspar Enriquez papers, 1973-2017

Creator:
Enriquez, Gaspar, 1942-  Search this
Subject:
Antone, Bernadin  Search this
Jimenez, Luis  Search this
Juárez, Miguel  Search this
Marin, Cheech  Search this
Silva, Elda  Search this
Type:
Photographs
Sketches
Topic:
Mexican American art--Texas  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)17462
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)387806
AAA_collcode_enrigasp
Theme:
Latino and Latin American
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_387806
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Harlan Butt

Interviewee:
Butt, Harlan W., 1950-  Search this
Interviewer:
Riedel, Mija, 1958-  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
American Craft Council  Search this
Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts -- Faculty  Search this
Enamelist Society  Search this
Haystack Mountain School of Crafts -- Faculty  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Penland School of Crafts -- Faculty  Search this
Rhode Island School of Design -- Faculty  Search this
San Diego State University -- Faculty  Search this
Society of North American Goldsmiths  Search this
Southern Illinois University at Carbondale -- Students  Search this
Tyler School of Art -- Students  Search this
University of North Texas -- Faculty  Search this
Brooks, Jan  Search this
Glantz, Ken  Search this
Japanese tea ceremony  Search this
Kington, L. Brent (Louis Brent), 1934-2013  Search this
Lechtzin, Stanley, 1936-  Search this
Moty, Eleanor  Search this
Paley, Albert  Search this
Pijanowski, Eugene, 1938-  Search this
Pijanowski, Hiroko Sato, 1942-  Search this
Pujol, Elliot  Search this
Scanga, Italo, 1932-2001  Search this
Shirk, Helen Z., 1942-  Search this
Snyder, Gary, 1930-  Search this
Staffel, Rudolf, 1911-2002  Search this
Winokur, Robert, 1933-  Search this
Extent:
7 Items (Sound recording: 7 sound files (5 hr., 19 min.), digital, wav)
90 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Interviews
Sound recordings
Place:
Australia -- Description and Travel
India -- description and travel
Japan -- Description and Travel
Date:
2009 July 27-28
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Harlan W. Butt conducted 2009 July 27-28, by Mija Riedel, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at Butt's studio, in Ptarmigan Meadows, Colorado.
Harlan Butt speaks of the influence of Asian art on his work; the use of text and imagery in his work; the use of pattern in his work; his undergraduate minor in weaving; the influence of Asian religion and mythology; series The Earth Beneath Our Feet , Garden Anagogies, and Snakes in Heaven; his childhood growing up in Hopewell, New Jersey, near Princeton; undergraduate work at Tyler School of Art, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; discovery of Buddhism and Eastern religions; his mother's death when he was 20; studying with Stanley Lechtzin and Elliot Pujol at Tyler; graduate school at Southern Illinois University, Carbondale; interest in Japanese tea ceremony; more exploration of Zen Buddhism; use of color in his work; studying with L. Brent Kington; reliquary series; move to Connecticut in 1974; second trip to Japan in 1984 to co-curate Kyoto Metal: An Exhibition of Contemporary Japanese Art Metalwork; introduction to Japanese system of artisan apprenticeship; early efforts as a writer and poet; the influence of poet Gary Snyder; summer teaching position at Rhode Island School of Design, Providence; teaching job at San Diego [California] State University in the mid-1970s; rattles and pipes series; exploring the Western landscape; the power of the snake image; taking a teaching position at University of North Texas, Denton (1976- ); first trip to Japan in 1980; differences in artisanal/metalworking practices in Japan and the United States; teaching workshops at various craft schools, Penland School of Crafts, Penland, North Carolina; Haystack School of Crafts, Deer Isle, Maine; and Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts, Gatlinburg, Tennessee, compared with teaching in a university; the pros and cons of the gallery system; work with the Nancy Yaw Gallery, Birmingham, Michigan; the challenge of commission work; National Parks Project, Denton Center for the Visual Arts, Denton, Texas; the role of haiku and text in his pieces; series 1,001 Views of Mt. Mu; series Snakes in Heaven; the influence of his wife and children; trip to India and organizing Colour & Light: The Art and Craft of Enamel on Metal, National Gallery of Modern Art, Mumbai, 2001; trip to Australia; involvement with the Society of North American Goldsmiths, Enamelist Society, and American Craft Council; subtle issues of environmentalism in his work; his affinity for metalsmithing and enameling. He also recalls [Rudolf] Staffel, Robert Winokur, Italo Scanga, Jan Brooks, Mike Riegel, Rachelle Thiewes, Eleanor Moty, Albert Paley, Shumei Tanaka, Ken Glantz (Ken Chowder), Randy Thelma Coles, Sandy Green, Mickey McCarter, Gene Pijanowski, Hiroko Pijanowski, Toshihiro Yamanaka, Helen Shirk, Ana Lopez, and Sarah Perkins.
Biographical / Historical:
Harlan W. Butt (1950- ) is an artist, metalsmith, and educator in Denton, Texas. Mija Riedel (1958- ) is a writer and independent scholar in San Francisco, California.
General:
Originally recorded on 4 sound mini discs. Reformatted in 2010 as 7 digital wav files. Duration is 5 hr., 19 min.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.
Restrictions:
Transcript available on the Archives of American Art website.
Topic:
Art, Asian  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Art teachers -- Interviews  Search this
Buddhism  Search this
Metal-workers -- Texas -- Interviews  Search this
Weaving -- Study and teaching  Search this
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Identifier:
AAA.butt09
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-butt09

Blanche McVeigh papers

Creator:
McVeigh, Blanche  Search this
Names:
Amler, W. King  Search this
Arms, John Taylor, 1887-1953  Search this
Bywaters, Jerry  Search this
Reed, Doel, b. 1894  Search this
Walker, Maynard  Search this
Extent:
301 Items ((on 1 microfilm reel))
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Date:
1920-1970
Scope and Contents:
Correspondence with W. King Ambler, John Taylor Arms, Jerry Bywaters, Doel Reed, James Swann, Maynard Walker, and print and art societies; a career resume and other biographical material; price lists of prints; a scrapbook containing clippings; exhibition catalogs and invitations.
Biographical / Historical:
Etcher, printmaker, and art instructor, Fort Worth, Tex.; b. 1895; d. 1970 Attended Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Chicago Art Institute, Washington University in St. Louis, and the Art Students League. Works reproduced in newspapers and magazines. Founded Fort Worth School of Fine Arts.
Provenance:
Loaned by Judy McVeigh Cordell, McVeigh's niece.
Restrictions:
The Archives of American art does not own the original papers. Use is limited to the microfilm copy.
Occupation:
Art teachers -- Texas -- Fort Worth  Search this
Etchers -- Texas -- Fort Worth  Search this
Printmakers -- Texas -- Fort Worth  Search this
Topic:
Women artists -- Texas  Search this
Identifier:
AAA.mcveblan
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-mcveblan

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