The papers of New York painter and educator Marcia Marcus measure 8.42 linear feet and .389 gigabytes (1 computer file), and date from 1928-2016, with the bulk of the materials dating from 1950-2000. The papers include biographical material, correspondence, interviews, writings (including two diaries), project files, personal business records, printed material, photographic material, eight sketchbooks, and artwork. Extensive personal and professional correspondence is with her husband and close friends, galleries, museums, and other arts organizations. Notable correspondents include Sally Avery, Dody Müller, and Robert (Bob) Richenburg, and, to a lesser extent, Dorothy Gill Barnes, Elaine Benson, Elaine de Kooning, Grace Hartigan, and Myron Stout. Photographic material includes photographs of Marcus at all stages of her life and photographs and slides documenting her paintings.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of New York painter and educator Marcia Marcus measure 8.42 linear feet and .389 gigabytes (1 computer file), and date from 1928-2016, with the bulk of the materials dating from 1950-2000. The papers include biographical material, correspondence, interviews, writings (including two diaries), project files, personal business records, printed material, photographic material, eight sketchbooks, and artwork.
Biographical material includes address books, diplomas, certificates, identification documents, resumes, and other material.
Extensive personal and professional correspondence is with Marcia Marcus's husband and close friends, galleries, museums, and other arts organizations. Notable correspondents include Sally Avery, Dody Müller, and Robert (Bob) Richenburg, and, to a lesser extent, Dorothy Gill Barnes, Elaine Benson, Elaine de Kooning, Grace Hartigan, and Myron Stout.
Interviews include 2 sound cassettes and a few transcripts. Writings by Marcia Marcus consist of diaries, artist statements, notebooks, notes, lists and poems. There are also a few writings by others about Marcus. Project files mostly consist of grant applications, a mail art project, information on exhibitions curated by Marcus, and other material.
Personal business records include receipts, ledgers, prices lists, leases, and other documentation. Photographic material includes photographs of Marcus at all stages of her life and photographs and slides documenting her paintings. There are eight sketchbooks and artwork, mostly in the form of small sketches and watercolors.
The collection is arranged as ten series
Series 1: Biographical Material, 1928-2000s (0.7 linear feet; Box 1, OV 9)
Series 2: Correspondence, 1948-2016 (4.0 linear feet; Box 1-5)
Series 3: Interviews, 1970s-1980 (3 folders; Box 5)
Series 4: Writings, 1970s-2014 (0.3 linear feet; Box 5)
Series 5: Project Files, 1962-circa 2000 (0.2 linear feet; Box 5-6)
Series 6: Personal Business Records, 1960s-2000s (0.3 linear feet; Box 6)
Series 7: Printed Material, 1950s-1990s (0.8 linear feet; Box 6-7, OV 10-11)
Series 8: Photographic Material, 1950s-1990s (1.3 linear feet; Box 7-8)
Series 9: Sketchbooks, circa 1954-2000 (0.3 linear feet; Box 8)
Series 10: Artwork, 1950s-1990s (0.4 linear feet; Box 8, OV 12)
Biographical / Historical:
Marcia Marcus (1928- ) is a figurative painter working in New York, New York.
Born in New York City, Marcus earned her bachelor's degree in fine arts from New York University in 1949, studied at the Cooper Union from 1950-1952, and studied at the Art Students League with Edwin Dickinson in 1954. In 1951, Marcus exhibited her first painting in a group exhibition at Roko Gallery in New York City. Since then, she has been the subject of over a dozen solo shows and participated in many group exhibitions.
Marcus had an exhibition of self-portraits (1960) at the Delancey Street Museum, where the artist Red Grooms, one of her many friends in the art world, was one of the founders. She also directed and performed a "Happening" there. In 1961, Marcus studied Byzantine and fresco painting in Florence, Italy. She then traveled to France from 1962-1963 on a Fulbright fellowship, and was the recipient of many other grants throughout her career including a Esther and Adolph Gottlieb grant and a National Endowment for the Arts grant. Marcus has taught as a visiting artist at a number of colleges and universities, including Vassar College, New York University, and Purdue University.
Marcus married Terrence (Terry) Barrell in 1959 and they have two children, Kate and Jane.
Also found in the Archives of American Art is an oral history interview with Marcia Marcus conducted by Paul Cummings in 1975.
Marcia Marcus donated her papers in multiple increments between 1974-1984. Her daughter Kate Prendergast donated additional papers in 2016.
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Use of archival audiovisual recordings and born-digital records with no duplicate copy requires advance notice.
Art teachers -- New York (State) -- New York Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America Search this
67 Pages (Transcript)
2003 May 2-7
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Dorothy Gill Barnes conducted 2003 May 2-7, by Joanne Cubbs, for the Archives of American Art, at the artist's home, in Worthington, Ohio, as part of the Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America.
Barnes speaks of her childhood in Iowa; studying art at Coe College, Minneapolis School of Art, University of Iowa, and Cranbrook Academy of Art; her experiences teaching art in a junior high school, college, and at workshops; the role of her family in her artistic career; she describes shows in the 1970s that inspired her interest in basketry, including the Lausanne Biennale, the Miniature Textile Exhibition in London and "In Praise of Hands" at the Ontario Science Centre, Toronto, 1974; the benefits of craft schools in arts education; her travels in Australia, New Zealand, Spain, France, China, and Honduras; collaborations and apprenticeships; her involvement in "Weave a Real Peace," a community aspiring to "improve the world through textiles"; women and ethnicity as inspiration; her reverence for nature and her knowledge and respect for trees; her working environment in her studio and in the woods; the elements of play and experimentation in her work; her use of dendroglyphs; the role of universities in the craft movement; critiques from various audiences and in periodicals; the value of a photo archive; she explains how the material and traditions in basketry influence her art; the difficulty and beauty of working with organic materials; the evolution of her work; her exhibition history; her political and social activities; her involvement in national and local organizations; the importance of timing as part of her artistic process; her use of power tools and collaborators; and she concludes with a statement about the National Basketry Organization. She recalls John Schulze, Audrey Flack, Osma Gallinger Tod, Jane Sauer, Ed Rossbach, Pat Hickman, Lillian Elliot, David and Judy Drew, Jack Lenor Larsen, Jiro Yonezawa, Elsabe Dixon, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Dorothy Gill Barnes (1927- ) is a basket maker of Worthington, Ohio. Joanne Cubbs (1955- ) is a writer and curator.
Originally recorded 4 sound discs. Reformatted in 2010 as 14 digital wav files. Duration is 4 hr., 38 min.
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.
Transcript available on the Archives of American Art website.