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Edward J. Orth Memorial Archives of the World's Fair

Collector:
Orth, Edward J.  Search this
Exhibition Collectors Historical Organization  Search this
Names:
New York World's Fair (1939-1940 : New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Extent:
130 Cubic feet (417 boxes, 23 map-folders)
130 Cubic feet (417 boxes, 23 map-folders)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Souvenirs
Photographs
Pamphlets
Guidebooks
Exhibition posters--1930-1940
Diaries
Ephemera
Film transparencies
Motion picture film
Posters
Place:
Flushing Meadows Park (New York, N.Y.)
New York (N.Y.)
Date:
1835-2000, undated
1835-2000, undated
Summary:
Collection documents the 1939 New York World's Fair in Flushing Meadows, New York. Also includes material relating to other fairs, the Exhibition Collectors Historical Organization (ECHO), New York City tourism and The Walt Disney Company.
Scope and Contents:
Collection primarily documents the conception, planning, construction, management, and operations of the 1939 New York World's Fair located in Flushing Meadows, New York. Materials provide historical context and cultural significance as recorded in publications, artwork, photographs, ephemera, postcards, maps, plans, exhibitor's literature, souvenirs, and motion picture film. Most of the materials were primarily created for people who attended the fair. Some of the materials include scrapbooks created by fair visitors to document their experiences. There is a significant amount of material relating to other fairs, New York tourism, the Exhibition Collectors Historical Organization (ECHO) and the World's Fair Collector's Society. Other forms of entertainment such as festivals, the Olympic games, and Disney World are also found among these materials. There is little information relating to Edward Orth's personal and professional life as a city planner. The collection is arranged into eleven series.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into eleven series.

Series 1, Edward J. Orth Personal Papers, 1915-1989, undated

Subseries 1.1, Correspondence, 1939-1989

Subseries 1.2, Other Materials, 1915-1989, undated

Series 2, Exhibition Collectors Historical Organization (ECHO) and World's Fair Collector's Society, Incorporated Records, 1942-1990, undated

Subseries 2.1, General Information, 1960-1988, undated

Subseries 2.2, Correspondence, 1942-1990, undated

Subseries 2.3, Classified and Wanted Advertisements, 1956-1988, undated

Subseries 2.4, Financial Records, 1976-1989

Subseries 2.5, Newsletters, 1969-1988, undated

Subseries 2.6, Membership Materials, 1970s-1989, undated

Series 3, New York World's Fair, Incorporated Records, 1900-1988, undated

Subseries 3.1, Administrative Files, 1900-1977, undated

Subseries 3.2, Amusement Zone, 1937-1940, undated

Subseries 3.3, Communications and Business Systems Zone, 1939-1965, undated

Subseries 3.4, Community Interest Zone, 1939-1949, undated

Subseries 3.5, Food Zone, 1939-1975

Subseries 3.6, Government Zone, 1939-1940

Subseries 3.7, Production and Distribution Zone, 1939-1940

Subseries 3.8, Transportation Zone, 1939-1940

Subseries 3.9, Ephemera, 1938-1988, undated

Series 4, Photographic Materials, 1939-1968, undated

Subseries 4.1, General, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 4.2, Amusement Area, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 4.3, Business Systems Zone, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 4.4, Communications Zone, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 4.5, Community Interest Zone, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 4.6, Food Zone, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 4.7, Government Zone, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 4.8, Production and Distribution Zone, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 4.9, Transportation Zone, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 4.10, Miscellaneous, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 4.11, Oversize Photographs, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 4.12, Color Slides, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 4.13, Color Transparencies, 1940-1942, undated

Subseries 4.14, Edward Orth, 1967-1968

Series 5, Scrapbooks, 1938-1981

Series 6, Postcards, 1906-1985, undated

Subseries 6.1, Amusement Area, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 6.2, Business Systems Zone, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 6.3, Communications Zone, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 6.4, Community Interest Zone, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 6.5, Food Zone, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 6.6, Government Zone, International, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 6.7, Government Zone, Federal and States, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 6.8, Production and Distribution Zone, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 6.9, Transportation Zone, 1939-1940, undated

Subseries 6.10, General, 1940, undated

Subseries 6.11, By Type, 1906-1985, undated

Series 7, Publications Related to World's Fairs, 1922-1989, undated

Subseries 7.1, Magazines, 1922-1988, undated

Subseries 7.2, Newspaper Articles, 1935-1989, undated

Subseries 7.3, Other Publications, 1937-1989, undated

Subseries 7.4, Other Subjects, 1962-1989

Series 8, Materials Relating to Other Fairs, 1851-2000, undated

Subseries 8.1, Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations or Crystal Palace Exhibition, 1851

Subseries 8.2, Exhibition of the Industry of All Nations, 1853-1853

Subseries 8.3, International Exhibition of Arts, Manufactures, and Products of the Soil and Mine or Centennial International Exhibition, 1876

Subseries 8.4, World's Columbian Exposition or Chicago World's Fair, 1893

Subseries 8.5, Exposition Internationale D'Anvers, Antwerp, Belgium

Subseries 8.6, Tennessee Centennial and International Exposition, 1897

Subseries 8.7, Trans-Mississippi and International Exposition, 1898

Subseries 8.8, Expositions, 1901

Subseries 8.9, Louisiana Purchase Exposition, 1906

Subseries 8.10, Jamestown Tercentennial Exposition, 1907

Subseries 8.11, Alaska, Yukon, Pacific Exposition, 1909

Subseries 8.12, Panama-California Exposition, 1915-1916

Subseries 8.13, Bronx International Exposition of Science, Arts, and Industries, 1918

Subseries 8.14, Sesquicentennial Exposition, 1926

Subseries 8.15, Barcelona International Exposition, 1929

Subseries 8.16, L'Exposition Coloniale, Paris, 1931

Subseries 8.17, Olympics, 1932

Subseries 8.18, A Century of Progress International Exposition, 1933

Subseries 8.19, Expositions, 1933-1935

Subseries 8.20, Expositions, 1936-1937

Subseries 8.21, Exposition Internationale des Arts et Techniques dans la Vie Moderne, 1937

Subseries 8.22, Golden Gate International Exposition, 1939

Subseries 8.23, Festival of Britain, Britain, London, United Kingdom, 1951

Subseries 8.24, Milan Fair, 1955

Subseries 8.25, Exposition Universelle et venti Internationale de Bruxelles, 1958

Subseries 8.26, American National Exhibition, 1959

Subseries 8.27, New York's World Fair, 1961-1977, undated

Subseries 8.28, Century 21 Exhibition, 1961-1962

Subseries 8.29, International and Universal Exposition or Expo 67, 1967

Subseries 8.30, Long Beach, California, 1967-1968

Subseries 8.31, HemisFair 68, 1968

Subseries 8.32, Expo 70 or Japan World Exposition, 1970

Subseries 8.33, Expo 74 or International Exposition on the Environment

Subseries 8.34, Expo 75 or International Ocean Exposition, 1975

Subseries 8.35, American Revolution Bicentennial, 1776-1976, 1976

Subseries 8.36, Queen's Bicentennial Festival, 1975-1976

Subseries 8.37, Plovdiv International Exhibition of 1981 or Expo 81

Subseries 8.38, Kobe Port Island Exposition or Portopia 81, 1981

Subseries 8.39, Knoxville International Energy Exposition or 1982 World's Fair, 1982

Subseries 8.40, Louisiana World Exposition, 1984

Subseries 8.41, Games of the XXIII Olympiad, 1984

Subseries 8.42, The International Exposition, Tsukuba, Japan or The International Science Technology Exposition, 1985

Subseries 8.43, Queen's Festival, 1985

Subseries 8.44, 1986 World Exposition on Transportation and Communication or Expo 86, 1986

Subseries 8.45, World Expo 88, 1988

Subseries 8.46, Universal Exposition of Seville or Expo 92, 1992

Subseries 8.47, Expo 2000, 2000

Subseries 8.48, Other Events and Celebrations, 1886-1989

Subseries 8.49, Combined Fairs, 1968-1994

Subseries 8.50, General information about world's fairs, 1964-1980

Series 9, Ephemera, 1892-1989, undated

Subseries 9.1, New York and New York World's Fair, 1892-1989, undated

Subseries 9.2, Other States and Countries, 1835, 1939, undated

Subseries 9.3, Motion Picture Film and Entertainment, 1937-1981, undated

Series 10, Audio Visual Materials, 1939, 1964-1965, undated

Subseries 10.1, Moving Images, 1939, 1964-1965, undated

Subseries 10.2, Sound Recordings, undated

Series 11, Oversize, 1835-1992, undated
Biographical / Historical:
Biographical / Historical

Edward Joseph Orth grew up with a strong interest in history, particularly the history of the 1939 New York World's Fair. Orth's visit to the fair as a twelve-year-old boy led to a life-long passion of collecting. At the time of his death, he had amassed enough materials to fill two homes in California. Orth also collected materials from several other fairs. In addition, he saved some of the records of the Exhibition Collectors Historical Organization (ECHO) and the World's Fair Collector's Society.

Orth was born April 19, 1927, to Andrew Joseph Orth and Florence Minnie Gordon Orth in Glendale, New York. In the 1930s, the Orth family lived in several locations in New York including Ridgewood, Brooklyn, Glendale, and Queens. The home that made the most impact in young Orth's life came in 1935 when the family moved to St. Albans, Queens seven miles from Flushing Meadow Park, the future site of the 1939 fair. Sadly in 1939 there were several deaths in the family including three grandparents. The severe loss of life limited family social activities but a drive by the future site of the fair provided Orth a glimpse of the Trylon and Perisphere. He would later remark that the sight appeared to be magic. In the summer of 1939, he went to the fair with his classmates from Public School 136. The next summer Orth and his father purchased a 10-admission ticket from an elementary school in Hollis, Queens, New York. He saved every souvenir and any information he could find about the fair. He filled scrapbooks with images from newspapers and postcards from the Curt Teich and Manhattan Postcard companies. When his family moved from an apartment to a house, he acquired a fair bench which was kept in the backyard.

In 1941, Orth attended Newton High School in Elmhurst, and Queens, New York. The high school offered a college preparatory program with heavy emphasis on mathematics, science, mechanical drawing, and workshop courses. Orth's education and training combined with the knowledge he gained from motion picture films viewed at the fair, including Thomas Edison's "The City of Light," Ford Motor Company's "Road of Tomorrow," "Democracy," and General Motors' "Futurama" provided the foundation and inspiration for a career in architecture and landscaping. He ultimately became a city planner for the state of California. By 1943, Orth was exploring used magazine and bookstores in New York City to acquire more fair materials before enlisting in the United States Army in 1945. Upon his discharge he resumed buying and trading fair postcards. From 1948-1953, Orth attended the University of California and the University of Connecticut where he studied architecture and landscape design. During these years he posted advertisements in various publications in his continued pursue for fair materials.

In March 1953, Mr. Orth moved to Los Angeles, California. There he formed lasting friendships with other collectors. By 1967, Orth and several of his closest friends including Peter Warner, Oscar Hengstler, David Oats, Larry Zim, and Ernest Weidhaas conceived the idea of a fair collector's organization. By the summer of 1968, the group had formally created the Exhibition Collectors Historical Organization (ECHO).

As time passed Orth became increasing concerned about the welfare of his collection. He wanted it to go to a museum rather than be sold in parts. In his will he stipulated that the collection would be given to the Smithsonian Institution upon his death. Jon Zackman, former Smithsonian employee, interviewed Orth's brother George and fair collector Peter Warner. Orth and Warner corresponded and traded objects over many years. Mr. Orth primarily covered the west coast area while Peter Warner was his east coast counterpart. Edward Orth died on September 6,1989 in Los Angeles, California at the age of sixty-two.
Related Materials:
Materials in the Archives Center

New York World's Fair Collection, NMAH.AC.0134

Landor Design Collection, NMAH.AC.0500

Warshaw Collection of Business Americana, Subject Category, World Expos, NMAH.AC.0060

Larry Zim World's Fair Collection, NMAH.AC.0519

Alice R. Hillis World's Fair Film, NMAH.AC.0531

Borden Company 1939 New York World's Fair Collection, NMAH.AC.1063

Memories of the New York World's Fair, NMAH.AC.0592

Archives Center World Expositions Collection, NMAH.AC.0825

Daniel H. Meyerson World's Fair Collection, NMAH.AC.0745

Division of Community Life World's Fairs Collection, NMAH.AC.1132

Princeton University Posters Collection, NMAH.AC.0433

Hills Bros. Coffee Company, Incorporated Records, NMAH.AC.0395

Smithsonian Speech Synthesis History Project, NMAH.AC.0417

Messmore and Damon Company Records, NMAH.AC.0846

Thomas Norrell Railroad Collection, NMAH.AC.1174

William L. Bird Holidays on Display Collection, NMAH.AC.1288

Wurlitzer Company Records, NMAH.AC.0469

Victor A. Blenkle Postcard Collection, NMAH.AC.0200

Materials at Other Organizations

New York Public Library The New York World's Fair 1939 and 1940 Incorporated Records, 1935-1945, MssCol 2233.

New York City 1939 World's Fair architectural drawings, circa 1935. Museum of the City of New York. Museum of the City of New York.

New York City 1939 World's Fair Collection, 1939-1940. Museum of the City of New York. New York World's Fair 1939/40 Collection. Queens Museum.

1939 New York World's Fair Postcards, Identifier: 1972-320, Audiovisual Collections Repository, Hagley Museum & Library
Separated Materials:
Materials at the National Museum of American History

Artifacts from the collection include several thousand souvenirs and examples of memorabilia commemorating the fair to include buttons and badges, ceramics, glassware, clothing, costume jewelry, coins and medals, commemorative spoons and flatware, toys and games, and philatelic material which are all part of the Division of Home and Community Life's holdings (now Division of Cultural and Community Life).
Restrictions:
Collection is open for research but is stored off-site and special arrangements must be made to work with it. Researchers must handle unprotected photographs with gloves. Researchers must use reference copies of audio-visual materials. When no reference copy exists, the Archives Center staff will produce reference copies on an "as needed" basis, as resources allow. Viewing film portion of collection requires special appointment, please inquire. Do not use when original materials are available on reference video or audio tapes. Contact the Archives Center for information at archivescenter@si.edu or 202-633-3270.
Rights:
Collection items available for reproduction, but the Archives Center makes no guarantees concerning copyright restrictions. Other intellectual property rights may apply. Archives Center cost-recovery and use fees may apply when requesting reproductions.
Topic:
Exhibitions -- 1930-1940 -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
World's fairs  Search this
Amusement parks--History  Search this
Amusement parks--New York (State)--History  Search this
Architecture--Exhibitions  Search this
Architecture--New York (State)--New York  Search this
Architecture--United States--Designs and plans  Search this
Burlesque shows--New York (State)--New York--1930-1940  Search this
Business history Business enterprises--United States--History  Search this
Chicago's Century of Progress  Search this
Construction and civil engineering  Search this
Construction industry--United States--Management--History  Search this
Corporate culture--History  Search this
Corporate culture--United States  Search this
Engineering--History--20th century  Search this
Exhibition buildings – New York (State) – New York  Search this
Exhibition buildings--1920-1940  Search this
Exhibitions -- Design  Search this
Exhibitions -- 1930-1940 -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Fairs -- New York (State) -- New York -- History  Search this
Fashion--History--20th century  Search this
Flushing Meadows-Corona Park (New York, N.Y.)--History  Search this
Food in popular culture--New York (State)--New York  Search this
Graphic arts--United States--History--20th century  Search this
International exhibitions  Search this
International Exhibitions Bureau  Search this
Lighting, Architectural and decorative--History--20th century  Search this
Technology -- United States -- History -- 20th century  Search this
Transportation--New York Metropolitan Area--Planning  Search this
Transportation--New York (State)  Search this
United States --Foreign relations --1933-1945  Search this
Urban parks--United States--History  Search this
Urban design  Search this
World War, 1939-1945 -- Economic aspects -- United States  Search this
Consumerism  Search this
Consumers--History--20th century  Search this
General Motors Corporation  Search this
Grand Central Parkway extension  Search this
Organizational behavior--United States--History  Search this
Public relations--History  Search this
New York World's Fair Commission  Search this
Queens (New York, N.Y.) Buildings, structures, etc.  Search this
Genre/Form:
Souvenirs -- 1930-1940
Photographs -- Black-and-white photoprints -- Silver gelatin -- 1930-1940
Pamphlets -- 1930-1940
Guidebooks -- 1930-1940
Exhibition posters--1930-1940
Diaries
Ephemera -- 20th century
Film transparencies
Motion picture film
Posters -- 1930-1940
Citation:
Edward J. Orth Memorial Archives of the New York World's Fair, Archives Center, National Museum of American History
Identifier:
NMAH.AC.0560
See more items in:
Edward J. Orth Memorial Archives of the World's Fair
Archival Repository:
Archives Center, National Museum of American History
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-nmah-ac-0560
Online Media:

James Graham & Sons records

Creator:
James Graham & Sons  Search this
Names:
Coe Kerr Gallery  Search this
Duveen-Graham (Gallery)  Search this
Graham Gallery  Search this
Graham Modern (Gallery)  Search this
Cicero, Carmen, 1926-  Search this
Coheleach, Guy  Search this
Crile, Susan, 1942-  Search this
De Kooning, Elaine  Search this
Dickinson, Edwin Walter, 1891-1978  Search this
Duveen, Albert  Search this
Fogel, Seymour, 1911-1984  Search this
Fried, Nancy  Search this
Graham, Robert Claverhouse, 1913-1994  Search this
Kriesberg, Irving, 1919-  Search this
Melchers, Gari, 1860-1932  Search this
Perrine, Van Dearing, 1869-1955  Search this
Santlofer, Jonathan, 1946-  Search this
Schley, Reeve, 1936-  Search this
Stevens, Peter  Search this
Thorne, Joan, 1943-  Search this
Trieff, Selina, 1934-  Search this
Wyeth, Andrew, 1917-2009  Search this
Wyeth, Jamie, 1946-  Search this
Wyeth, N. C. (Newell Convers), 1882-1945  Search this
Extent:
103.2 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Visitors' books
Scrapbooks
Photographs
Date:
1821
1815
circa 1896-2011
Summary:
The records of the New York City gallery James Graham & Sons measure 103.2 linear feet and date from 1815, 1821, circa 1896-2011 (bulk 1950s-1980s). The collection generally documents the gallery's contemporary art department during the time in which Robert Claverhouse Graham, Sr. worked at the gallery (1940-1979); records prior to 1954 are sparse and scattered. Gallery records include artist files; correspondence; exhibition files; financial records; inventory records; printed materials; sales, loans, and consignment records; scrapbooks; and photographic materials. Also found are records from Coe Kerr Gallery regarding exhibitions.. There is a 8.0 linear foot unprocessed addition to this collection donated in 2018 that includes artists' files regarding exhibitions and photographs of works of art.
Scope and Content Note:
The records of the New York City gallery James Graham & Sons measure 103.2 linear feet and date from 1815, 1821, circa 1896-2011 (bulk 1950s-1980s). The collection generally documents the gallery's contemporary art department during the time in which Robert Claverhouse Graham, Sr. worked at the gallery (1940-1979); records prior to 1954 are sparse and scattered. Gallery records include artist files; correspondence; exhibition files; financial records; inventory records; printed materials; sales, loans, and consignment records; scrapbooks; and photographic materials. Also found are records from Coe Kerr Gallery regarding exhibitions of artwork by Jamie Wyeth, and to a lesser extent, Andrew and N.C. Wyeth.

Over the years, the gallery changed names and established contemporary art departments. In addition to records of James Graham & Sons, the collection holds the records of Duveen-Graham Modern Art (in partnership with Albert Duveen), Graham Gallery, Graham Modern, JG|Contemporary, and, to a lesser extent, The Clapp and Graham Co.

Alphabetical files are a mix of business correspondence and business records. The bulk of the series contains correspondence with galleries, museums, other institutions, and, to a lesser extent, clients regarding sales, consignments, and loans of artwork. Also found are materials relevant to the daily operations of the gallery, including correspondence, subject files, and scattered financial, business and legal records.

Exhibition files provide scattered documentation of the gallery's exhibitions through catalogs, clippings, correspondence, guest books, notes, photographs, press materials, price lists, and sales receipts and other financial records.

Artists' Files document the numerous artists who have been represented by the gallery, especially modern American artists. Folders for each artist can contain a variety of materials, including correspondence with the artist or with institutions regarding consignments, loans, sales and exhibitions; photographic materials primarily of artwork; sales invoices; exhibition catalogs, postcards, and other printed materials; press releases; magazine and newspaper clippings; price lists; artist binders; and research materials on artists and artwork. Also found are some subject files, per original arrangement. There is extensive material related to artists Carmen Cicero, Susan Crile, Elaine De Kooning's portrait of President John F. Kennedy, Edwin Dickinson, muralist Seymour Fogel, Nancy Fried, Irving Kriesberg, Gari Melchers, Jonathan Santlofer, Reeve Schley, Peter Stevens, Joan Thorne, and Selina Trieff.

Artwork files document sales, consignments, and loans of artwork primarily from the mid-1980s to 2000s. Materials include agreements and contracts; condition reports; correspondence; invoices and receipts; photographs of artwork; shipping records; and photocopied printed material and other documentation. This series requires written permission from the donor in order to access.

Sales records from 1959-1984 (missing 1974) are found in the Financial Records series. Also found are check stub books from the mid-late 1950s; price lists; records for the Four Seasons Charter Corp.; and scattered banking, consignment, tax, and other financial records. Inventory cards from mid-1950s-1970s and inventory lists, often with notations and prices, are found in the series Inventory Records.

Coe Kerr Gallery Records regarding the Wyeths document Jamie Wyeth's exhibitions primarily from the mid-1970s-early 1980s. Also found is limited material regarding Andrew Wyeth and N.C. Wyeth. Materials include correspondence, photographs, exhibition printed materials, and extensive newspaper clippings.

There are exhibition catalogs, books, announcements, magazines, clippings, postcards, posters and other printed materials related to artists, John Graham & Sons exhibitions, and exhibitions by Graham artists held at other galleries and museums. Also found is an 1815 fifty cent note which was redeemed in 1821.

Seven scrapbooks document discrete aspects of the business, including the gallery's advertising, participation in an art fair, and the careers of artists Guy Coheleach and Van Dearing Perrine. Materials housed in the scrapbooks include clippings, catalogs, photographs, and other printed materials.

Photographic Materials include mostly black and white photographs, negatives, slides and transparencies of artwork; scattered photographs of installations, artists, and the gallery; and a handful of personal snapshots. The bulk of the photographs are undated, but were likely printed between 1950s-1990s.

There is a 8.0 linear foot unprocessed addition to this collection donated in 2018 that includes artists' files regarding exhibitions and photographs of works of art.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 11 series:

Series 1: Alphabetical Files, circa 1896, 1902-1999, bulk 1955-1986 (Boxes 1-15; 15 linear feet)

Series 2: Exhibition Files, 1912, 1947-2004 (Boxes 16-24; 8 linear feet)

Series 3: Artists' Files, circa 1907-2006, bulk 1955-1999 (Boxes 24-62, 95-96; 39.1 linear feet)

Series 4: Artwork Files, circa early 1900s-2011, bulk mid-1980s-2009 (Boxes 63-71, 94, 101; 9.3 linear feet)

Series 5: Financial Records, circa 1937-1993 (Boxes 72-76, 96; 4.5 linear feet)

Series 6: Inventory Records, circa 1954-1993 (Boxes 76-78, 96; 2.1 linear feet)

Series 7: Coe Kerr Gallery Records Regarding Wyeths, 1964-1988 (Boxes 78-80, 97; 2.7 linear feet)

Series 8: Printed Materials, 1815, 1821, 1949-2006 (Boxes 81-82, 97; 2.1 linear feet)

Series 9: Scrapbooks, 1897-1990s (Boxes 82, 98-100; 0.9 linear feet)

Series 10: Photographic Materials, 1929-1990s (Boxes 83-93, 96, 100-101; 11.5 linear feet)

Series 11: Unprocessed Addition, circa 1940-1980 (Boxes 102-109; 8 linear feet)
Historical Note:
The James Graham & Sons gallery has been owned and managed by the Graham family in New York City since 1857. Throughout its history, the gallery has specialized in decorative arts, antiques, and 19th-early 20th century and contemporary American art.

In 1857, Samuel Graham founded a gallery at 66 Third Street and specialized in furniture. Graham was joined by his son James in the 1880s and expanded the business to include antiques and decorative arts. James A. Graham, the third generation Graham, joined the gallery in the early 20th century. James Graham and antiques dealer Marshall Clapp created Clapp & Graham in 1914, a partnership which was dissolved around 1940.

James R. Graham, the fourth generation Graham, joined the gallery in 1937, followed by his brother Robert Claverhouse Graham, Sr. in 1940. The gallery was then named James Graham & Sons and was located at 514 Madison Avenue. At this time, the gallery specialized in bronzes, ceramics, silver, sculptures, and 19th-early 20th century American art. Robert C. Graham, Sr. introduced modern American art, especially The Eight, into the gallery's inventory.

In 1955, the gallery moved to 1014 Madison Avenue, where it remained until the late 2000s. That same year, Graham opened its first contemporary department with Albert Duveen. Duveen-Graham Modern Art gallery was based on the third floor of the Madison Avenue building and dealt solely in contemporary art until its closing in 1958. Robert C. Graham, Jr. (Robin) joined the gallery in 1963, becoming the fifth generation Graham to run the family business. The gallery is currently located at 32 East 67th Street.

Betsy Fahlman's "James Graham & Sons: A Century and a Half in the Art Business" (2007) was a valuable resource in constructing this Historical Note.
Related Material:
Among the other resources relating to James Graham & Sons in the Archives of American Art is an oral history interview with Robert Claverhouse Graham, November 19, 1976, and the David Herbert papers, 1950-1995.
Provenance:
The James Graham & Sons records were donated in 2007, 2008, and 2012 by Priscilla Caldwell and Jay Grimm of James Graham & Sons and in 2018 by Cameron Shay of James Graham & Sons.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment. Artwork Files (Boxes 63-71, 94) and some photographic materials (Box 93 and 101) require written permission to access.
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 -- Economic aspects  Search this
Painting -- United States  Search this
Sculpture -- United States  Search this
Function:
Art galleries, Commercial -- New York (State)
Genre/Form:
Visitors' books
Scrapbooks
Photographs
Citation:
James Graham & Sons records, 1815, 1821, circa 1896-2011, bulk 1950s-1980s. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.jamegras
See more items in:
James Graham & Sons records
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-jamegras
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Jun Kaneko, 2005 May 23- 24

Interviewee:
Kaneko, Jun, 1942-  Search this
Kaneko, Jun, 1942-  Search this
Interviewer:
McInnes, Mary  Search this
Subject:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Asian American art  Search this
Asian American artists  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Asian American sculptors  Search this
Asian American ceramicists  Search this
Ceramicists -- Nebraska -- Interviews  Search this
Theme:
Asian American  Search this
Craft  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)12628
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)252375
AAA_collcode_kaneko05
Theme:
Asian American
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_252375
Online Media:

Beatrice Wood papers

Creator:
Wood, Beatrice  Search this
Names:
Garth Clark Gallery (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
John Waller, Fine Ceramics (Firm : Los Angeles, Calif.)  Search this
Zachary Waller Gallery (Los Angeles, Calif.)  Search this
Arensberg, Louise S. (Louise Stevenson), 1879-1953  Search this
Arensberg, Walter, 1878-1954  Search this
Duchamp, Marcel, 1887-1968  Search this
Hapgood, Elizabeth Reynolds  Search this
Hoag, Stephen Asa  Search this
Nin, Anaïs, 1903-1977  Search this
Roché, Henri Pierre, 1879-1959  Search this
Rosencrantz, Esther, 1876-1950  Search this
Extent:
26.6 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Drafts (documents)
Interviews
Photographs
Illustrated letters
Notes
Watercolors
Diaries
Transcripts
Lithographs
Short stories
Illustrations
Designs
Drawings
Bookplates
Date:
1894-1998
bulk 1930-1990
Summary:
The papers of California ceramicist Beatrice Wood measure 26.6 linear feet and date from 1906 to 1998, with the bulk dating from 1930-1990. There is extensive correspondence with gallery owners, fellow artists, clients, friends, and family. The collection also contains biograpical materials, personal business records, writings, printed materials, photographs, and works of art. Of particular interest are the 28 diaries that Wood maintained from 1916 until her death in 1998 and 42 glazing formula notebooks dating from 1934-1997. Also found are documents of Steven Hoag and Esther Rosencranz, her husband and aunt respectively, that consist of correspondence, business records, and photographs given to the Archives of American Art as part of the Beatrice Wood papers.
Scope and Contents note:
The papers of California ceramicist Beatrice Wood measure 26.6 linear feet and date from 1906 to 1998, with the bulk dating from 1930-1990. There is extensive correspondence with gallery owners, fellow artists, clients, friends, and family. The collection also contains biographical materials, personal business records, writings, printed materials, photographs, and works of art. Of particular interest are the 28 diaries that Wood maintained from 1916 until her death in 1998 and 42 glazing formula notebooks dating from 1934-1997. Also found are documents of Steven Hoag and Esther Rosencranz, her husband and aunt respectively, that consist of correspondence, business records, and photographs given to the Archives of American Art as part of the Beatrice Wood papers.

Biographical material contains certificates, licenses, degrees, legal documents, and extensive interview transcripts, which describe her philosophy on art and her development as a ceramic artist.

Correspondence is particularly rich in documenting Wood's passion and dedication to her work as a writer and artist. The records reflect Wood's close professional and personal relationships with many friends and colleagues, including Henri-Pierre Roche, Marcel Duchamp, Anais Nin, Elizabeth Hapgood, and Walter and Lou Arensberg. Additional correspondence with editors and publishers is also included. Wood enjoyed illustrating her letters, as did many of her correspondents.

Personal business records include financial material, sales and consignment records, and correspondence with gallery owners, including Garth Clark Gallery, John Waller Gallery, and Zachary Waller Gallery.

Notes and writings extensively document Wood's second career as a writer. Edited drafts of her monographs and short stories are available, as well as her journal writings and notes. Drafts of I Shock Myself: The Autobiography of Beatrice Wood, Angel Who Wore Black Tights, 33rd Wife of a Maharajah, among others are included. Also found here are the illustrations that Wood created for her monographs. She often did a series of drawings for each illustration and these copies are included as well.

Twenty-eight detailed diaries contain information about studio sales, clients, and the economic uncertainties of being a self-employed artist. The diaries, arranged in one-year and five-year volumes, begin in 1916 and end just a few days before her death in 1998.

Forty-two glaze books record the formulas for the pottery glazes Wood developed throughout her career.

Printed material includes copies of Wood's published monographs as well as exhibition announcements and brochures. Also found are clippings about Wood, including numerous articles about her trips to India.

Photographic material includes photographs and slides of Wood, her friends, travels, and other events. Many of the photographs are identified by Wood.

Artwork includes original sketches, drawings, watercolors, lithographs and designs by Wood. The original illustrations from her books are included in this series.

The last two series contain records generated by her husband, Stephen Hoag and her maternal aunt, Esther Rosencrantz. Wood was married to Hoag from 1937 until his death in 1960. The bulk of the material contains Hoag's financial records, mostly receipts, from his early years as a engineer in the Pacific Northwest. Esther Rosencranz, a physician in San Francisco, collected book plates that are included in this series.
Arrangement note:
The collection is arranged as 11 series:

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1924-1993 (Box 1; 0.3 linear feet)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1910-1998 (Box 1-8; 7.7 linear feet)

Series 3: Personal Business Records, 1909-1988 (Box 9-11, 26, OV 31; 3.5 linear feet)

Series 4: Notes and Writings, circa 1912-1997 (Box 11-16, 27; 5.5 linear feet)

Series 5: Diaries, 1915-1998 (Box 17-20; 4 linear feet)

Series 6: Glaze Books, circa 1930-1997 (Box 21-22, 27-30; 2.5 linear feet)

Series 7: Printed Material, 1940-1997 (Box 23, OV 31; 1.1 linear feet)

Series 8: Photographic Material, 1913-1997 (Box 24, 30; 1 linear foot)

Series 9: Artwork, 1917-1991 (Box 24-25, 30; 0.5 linear feet)

Series 10: Stephen Hoag papers, 1906-1960 (Box 25; 0.3 linear feet)

Series 11: Esther Rosencranz papers, 1894-1959 (Box 25; 0.1 linear feet)
Biographical/Historical note:
Beatrice Wood (1893-1998) was a ceramicist, painter, and writer who relocated to Ojai, California in 1948.

Beatrice Wood was born on March 3, 1893 in San Francisco to socially prominent and wealthy parents. In the late 1890s, the family moved to New York City where Wood was expected to begin the process of "coming out" in New York society. This process included boarding schools, a convent school in Paris, and frequent summer trips to Europe where she was exposed to museums, galleries, and the theater. Wood studied acting and dance in Paris until the outbreak of the war in 1914. She returned to New York and soon joined the company of the French National Repertory Theatre. From 1914 through 1916, Wood played over 60 parts as a stage actress.

In 1917, Wood met the writer Henri Pierre Roche, with whom she had a brief affair and a long friendship. Roche introduced her to the New York world of artists and writers and encouraged her interest in drawing and painting. During a visit to see the composer Edgard Varese in the hospital, Wood met Marcel Duchamp, with whom she had a love affair and who also had a strong influence in her development as an artist. Their long discussions about modern art encouraged Wood to show Duchamp a recent drawing entitled "Marriage of a Friend." Duchamp liked the drawing so much that he published it in Rogue, a magazine partly financed by Walter and Louise Arensberg, friends of Duchamp. The Arensbergs were pioneering collectors of modern art and soon became friends of Wood as well. She became a frequent guest at their evening gatherings, forming friendships with Walter Pach, Francis Picabia, Joseph Stella, Myrna Loy, Galka Scheyer, and others.

Through Duchamp and the Arensbergs, Wood was introduced to the world of the New York Dada. Following the formation of the Society of Independent Artists in 1917, Wood exhibited work in their Independents exhibition. Together with Duchamp and Roche, she published a short-lived avant-garde journal, called Blind Man, in which the Alfred Steiglitz photograph of Duchamp's famous ready-made "Fountain" appeared. She also designed the poster for the Dada event, The Blind Man's Ball.

Throughout the 1920s, Wood continued to draw and paint, especially watercolors. Late in 1927, she moved to California to join the Arensbergs, who had been there since 1921. She also developed an interest in clay and took her first ceramics classes with Glen Lukens at the University of Southern California in the late 1930s. In 1940 Wood studied with Otto and Gertrud Natzler, Austrian potters who were known for their technical mastery and ability to throw almost perfectly formed pots. The Natzlers taught her how to throw pots and calculate glaze formulas.

Museums and galleries began to take an interest in her pottery and she held several shows in New York, San Francisco, and Phoenix. Several department stores, including Nieman Marcus and Gumps, also began to feature her pottery. During the 1940s, Wood began making figurative art in addition to more traditional pots. In 1947, for example, she included a large blue fish with white spots in an exhibition at the Los Angeles County Museum of History, Science, and Art. As her skills developed, Wood moved to a new home and studio in Ojai, California. By 1950, Wood was experimenting with luster surfaces, pottery with a metallic glaze that gives the effect of iridescence. These lusterware plates, in addition to her decorative figures and traditional ceramics, were sold at her studio, advertised with a sign out front that read "Beatrice Wood: Fine Pottery, Reasonable and Unreasonable."

In 1961, Wood visited India as a cultural ambassador, sponsored by the State Department. She toured the country and showed her work in fourteen cities. She became enamoured with Indian decorative arts and began to weave shimmering gold and silver threads into her palatte. Wood returned a second time in 1965 at the invitation of the Indian government. It was during this trip that she decided to adopt the sari as her style of dress, a style she continued until her death in 1998. She made her third and last trip to India in 1971. Her book, 33rd Wife of a Maharajah is about her adventures in India.

Wood always enjoyed writing, recording her daily activities in a diary and creating stories about her experiences with friends and colleagues. She published her first book, Angel Who Wore Black Tights in 1982, followed by her autobiography, I Shock Myself, in 1985.

Wood considered her last 25 years as her most productive. In addition to her literary publications, Wood also had several successful exhibitions, including Intimate Appeal: The Figurative Art of Beatrice Wood at the Oakland Museum in 1990 and Beatrice Wood: A Centennial Tribute at New York's American Craft Museum in 1997. The film, Beatrice Wood: The Mama of Dada, was filmed on the occasion of her 100th birthday in 1993. She died in Ojai, California in 1998, nine days after her 105th birthday.
Related Archival Materials note:
The Archives of American Art holds two oral history interviews with Beatrice Wood completed by Paul Karlstrom in 1976 and 1992.
Provenance:
Beatrice Wood donated her papers in several accretions between 1976 and 2002. Additional material was donated by Francis Naumann in 1993 and the Beatrice Wood Personal Property Trust in 1999. Material from a 1977 loan was included in Wood's later donations.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Topic:
Art -- Philosophy  Search this
Authors -- California  Search this
Glazes -- Formulae  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Actresses -- United States  Search this
Ceramicists -- California  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- California  Search this
Women ceramicists  Search this
Genre/Form:
Drafts (documents)
Interviews
Photographs
Illustrated letters
Notes
Watercolors
Diaries
Transcripts
Lithographs
Short stories
Illustrations
Designs
Drawings
Bookplates
Citation:
Beatrice Wood papers, 1906-1998, bulk 1930-1990. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.woodbeat
See more items in:
Beatrice Wood papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-woodbeat
Online Media:

Herbert Waide Hemphill papers

Creator:
Hemphill, Herbert Waide  Search this
Names:
Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Center  Search this
Centennial Exhibition (1876 : Philadelphia, Pa.)  Search this
Exposition Universelle de Paris (1878 : Paris, France)  Search this
Folk Art Society of America  Search this
Museum of International Folk Art (N.M.)  Search this
National Museum of American Art (U.S.)  Search this
Aiken, Gayleen  Search this
Bogun, Maceptaw, Rev.  Search this
Borkowski, Mary  Search this
Brice, Bruce  Search this
Carpenter, Miles B. (Miles Burkholder), 1889-  Search this
Coins, Raymond  Search this
Crittenden, Varick A.  Search this
Dinsmoor, Samuel Perry, 1843-1932  Search this
Donovan, Carrie  Search this
Fancher, John W.  Search this
Finster, Howard, 1916-2001  Search this
Flanagan, Thos. J. (Thomas Jefferson), b. 1890  Search this
Fowler, Tim  Search this
Gatto, Victor Joseph, 1893-1965  Search this
Ghostley, Alice, 1926-2007  Search this
Goins, Vernon  Search this
Hall, Michael D., 1941-  Search this
Hamblett, Theora, 1895-1977  Search this
Hartigan, Lynda Roscoe  Search this
Harvey, Bessie, 1929-  Search this
Hawkins, William Lawrence, 1895-1990  Search this
Hicks, Tiny  Search this
Holley, Lonnie  Search this
Hunter, Clementine  Search this
James, A. Everette (Alton Everette), 1938-  Search this
Jennings, James Harold  Search this
Jones, S. L. (Shields Landon), 1901-  Search this
Jordan, John  Search this
Josephson, Nancy, 1955-  Search this
Klumpp, Gustave, 1902-1974  Search this
Lisk, Charles  Search this
Little, Roy  Search this
Lopez, George  Search this
Maldonado, Alexander Aramburo, 1901-1989  Search this
McCarthy, Justin, 1891-1977  Search this
Merrill, James Ingram  Search this
Morgan, Gertrude  Search this
Mr. Imagination, 1948-  Search this
Nathaniel, Inez  Search this
O'Kelley, Mattie Lou  Search this
Orth, Kevin, 1961-  Search this
Patterson, Clayton  Search this
Prince, Daniel C.  Search this
Prince, Neal A.  Search this
Robertson, Royal  Search this
Rowe, Nellie Mae, 1900-1982  Search this
Smith, Fred, 1886-1975  Search this
Smith, Robert E., 1926-  Search this
Smither, John  Search this
Smither, Stephanie  Search this
Spies, Jim  Search this
St. EOM, 1908-1986  Search this
Terrillion, Veronica  Search this
Tolliver, Mose, 1920-  Search this
Tolson, Edgar, 1904-1984  Search this
Walters, Hubert  Search this
Weissman, Julia  Search this
Young, Purvis, 1943-  Search this
Zeldis, Malcah  Search this
Extent:
26.7 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Video recordings
Watercolors
Sketchbooks
Sound recordings
Photographs
Drawings
Poems
Reports
Prints
Interviews
Date:
1776-1998
bulk 1876-1998
Summary:
The papers of folk art collector and museum curator Herbert Waide Hemphill date from 1776-1998, bulk 1876-1998, and measure 26.7 linear feet. Found within the papers are biographical materials, personal business records, files documenting his collecting, writings, art work, minutes of meetings, a scrapbook, printed material including exhibition and auction announcements and catalogs, and miscellaneous artifacts. The collection also contains numerous photographs of Hemphill, family members, his residences, friends and colleagues, exhibitions, travel, and art work. Sound and video recordings include interviews of Hemphill.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of folk art collector and museum curator Herbert Waide Hemphill date from 1776-1998, bulk 1876-1998, and measure 26.7 linear feet. Found within the papers are biographical materials, personal business records, files documenting his collecting, writings, art work, minutes of meetings, a scrapbook, printed material including exhibition and auction announcements and catalogs, and miscellaneous artifacts. The collection also contains numerous photographs of Hemphill, family members, his residences, friends and colleagues, exhibitions, travel, and art work. Sound and video recordings include interviews of Hemphill.

Biographical material includes photocopies of Hemphill's birth certificate and passport, social security cards, and international health card, genealogical notes, an evaluation of his school work, membership cards, award certificates, address books, and an engagement calendar containing very brief annotations of his activities.

Correspondence documents Hemphill's affairs with miscellaneous museums and art institutions, discussing his presentation of lectures, exhibitions, and loans from his collection to organizations including the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Collection, the Folk Art Society of America, the Museum of International Folk Art, and the Smithsonian Institution's American Art Museum.

Hemphill's correspondence with friends and colleagues discuss collecting activities and pursuit of newly discovered folk art and artists. Many of the letters are from artists. Correspondents include Varick A. Crittenden, Michael D. Hall, A. Everette James, Daniel C. Prince, Neal A. Prince, and artists Rev. Maceptaw Bogun, Mary Borkowski, Tim Fowler, Joseph Victor Gatto, S. L. Jones, Gustav Klumpp, Roy Little, George Lopez, Kevin Orth, and Malcah Zeldis. There are also scattered letters from artists Miles Burkholder Carpenter, John W. Fancher, Rev. Howard Finster, William Hawkins, Sister Gertrude Morgan, Mr. Imagination, Mattie Lou O'Kelley, Clayton Patterson, St. EOM, and Mose Tolliver. One letter from Stephanie and John Smither is etched on a bone.

Personal business records include both legal and financial documents. There are wills for Hemphill, his mother, and for his friend Neal A. Prince. The records also include leases, insurance records, contracts, grant proposals, loan agreements, deeds of gift, price lists, consignment records, tax records, and miscellaneous receipts. Cancelled checks relate to Hemphill's collecting interests and activities, and include payments to artists for their work. There are court papers documenting a lawsuit by Hemphill's landlord who was attempting to evict him.

Art work consists of a sketchbook by Roy Little, a set of hand-cut Japanese mask designs, a collage of Polaroid photographs taped to glass created by Rev. Howard Finster, a hand-made book by Nancy Josephson, and miscellaneous drawings, watercolors, and prints by various artists including Justin McCarthy, Inez Nathaniel, and Nellie Mae Rowe.

Notes and writings include card files of artists, extensive bibliographic card files, and scattered notes on artists including Miles Carpenter, Raymond Coins, Rev. Howard Finster, Mattie Lou O'Kelley, Royal Robertson, Veronica Terrillion, Mose Tolliver, and Bill Traylor. Also found are lists of artists, patrons, and art work, miscellaneous notes, and minutes of meetings. Writings by Hemphill and others including Michael D. Hall, Lynda Roscoe Hartigan, A. Everett James, and Julia Weissman, consist of reports, typescripts, and poems concerning a wide range of art-related topics and travel.

A scrapbook consists of unbound pages of clippings and newsletters about Hemphill, his collection, and exhibitions of folk art.

There is extensive additional printed material illustrating Hemphill's many interests. This series primarily consists of clippings and exhibition announcements and catalogs for mainstream artists as well as folk artists. Also included are auction announcements and catalogs, announcements for festivals, press releases, and calendars of events. Numerous booklets, brochures, programs, menus, business cards, and novelty postcards concern a variety of topics including worldwide travel, the sale of art work, miscellaneous galleries, museums, organizations, conferences, schools, lectures, antiques and craft shops, films, publications, restaurants, household items, historical topics, and miscellaneous artists including Miles Carpenter, S. P. Dinsmoor, Lonnie Holley, Clementine Hunter, and Veronica Terrillion. There are also autographed copies of booklets The Black Swan and Other Poems by James Merrill, and The Blood of Jesus by Thomas Jefferson Flanagan. Novelty postcards range from photographs of Elvis Presley to cards with amusing captions or cartoon jokes. There is also sheet music by Charles Trenet. Miscellaneous printed material includes several eighteenth-century newspapers and a 1776 thirty shilling note from New Jersey.

Photographs are of Hemphill, family members, his residences, friends and colleagues including style editor Carrie Donovan, artist Rev. Howard Finster dancing at an exhibition opening, actress Alice Ghostley, Michael D. Hall, circus performers Vernon Goins and Tiny Hicks, Smithsonian curator Lynda Roscoe Hartigan, Neal A. Prince, and Jim Spies. Photographs of exhibitions include stereographic views of the International Exhibition in Philadelphia and the Exposition Universelle in Paris, and photographs of Hemphill's donation of his collection and its subsequent exhibition at the Smithsonian's American Art Museum. Travel photographs include views of South Dakota, Texas, the American West, Japan, Mexico, and The Netherlands.

Numerous photographs of art work sometimes include images of the artists with their work including Bruce Brice, Raymond Coins, John W. Fancher, Rev. Howard Finster, Theora Hamblett, Bessie Harvey, William Hawkins, James Harold Jennings, John Jordan, Charles Lisk, Alexander Maldonado, St. EOM, Fred Smith, Edgar Tolson, Hubert Walters, and Purvis Young. Some photographs of unattributed art work has been arranged by the state in which it is located and includes a Mardi Gras parade in Louisiana, a Mummer's parade in Pennsylvania, Lucy the Elephant-shaped building in New Jersey, and Holy Ghost Park in Wisconsin. Other photographs of unattributed art work include works on paper, paintings, sculpture, signs, collages, needlework, glass, ceramics, and architecture.

Sound and video recordings include a cassette from Hemphill's phone answering machine that contains only Hemphill's message to callers, cassette recordings of interviews with and concerning Hemphill, artist St. EOM, painter Robert E. Smith discussing his work, and the tour narration for a Smithsonian exhibition Made With Passion. There are videotapes about Hemphill and about artists Gayleen Aiken, Miller and Bryant, and Malcah Zeldis, and miscellaneous African American artists. There is also a videotape of an American Museum of Natural History tour group arriving in a succession of villages in Melanesia and Papua New Guinea where they are greeted by the native people and given the opportunity to purchase their art work.

Artifacts consist of a scattered assemblage of three-dimensional objects including three wooden "fringe" pieces from cigar store figures, ceramic fragments from a sword handle, a lock of horse hair, and a hand-painted View Master viewer souvenir from the opening of the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore. The View Master contains a disc of photographs of artists with their work including Vollis Simpson and Mary Frances Whitfield. Also included is a teacher's kit Little Adventures in Art containing four phonograph albums and four short film strips of slides showing art work in animal and bird forms.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 10 series; all series are arranged chronologically:

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1916-1997 (Box 1, 28; 12 folders)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1901-1998 (Boxes 1-5, 27- 28, OV 31; 4.0 linear feet)

Series 3: Personal Business Records, 1817-1997 (Box 5-7, 28; 2.0 linear feet)

Series 4: Art Work, 1911-1997 (Box 7, 32; 0.4 linear feet)

Series 5: Notes and Writings, 1938-1996 (Box 7-10, 28; 2.5 linear feet)

Series 6: Scrapbook, 1965-1976 (Box 10; 1 folder)

Series 7: Printed Material, 1776-1998 (Box 10-19, 28-29, OV 31; 9.5 linear feet)

Series 8: Photographs, 1876-1997 (Box 19-24, 29; 5.5 linear feet)

Series 9: Sound and Video Recordings, 1986-1991 (Box 25-26; 13 folders)

Series 10: Artifacts, 1968-1995 (Box 26, 30; 0.7 linear feet)
Biographical Note:
Herbert Waide Hemphill, Jr., (1929-1998) lived in New York city and was a prominent curator, historian, and collector of American folk art. Hemphill was one of the founding members of the Museum of American Folk Art, organized several large exhibitions of folk art, and co-authored Twentieth Century American Folk Art and Artist.

Hemphill was born on January 21, 1929 in Atlantic City, New Jersey, the son of businessman Herbert Waide Hemphill, Sr., and Emma Bryan Bradley Hemphill whose uncle, William Clark Bradley, was one of the owners of the Coca-Cola Company.

Hemphill was reared in his mother's home town of Columbus, Georgia, and attended Wynnton School. At the Lawrenceville School in New Jersey and the Solebury School in New Hope, Pennsylvania, Hemphill's principle interests were in art and theater. In 1948, he spent a year studying fine arts at Bard College under Stefan Hirsch, a painter and folk art collector.

Hemphill developed his interest in collecting while accompanying his mother on her shopping forays searching for Dresden china. His first acquisition was a wooden duck decoy purchased when he was seven years old. His early collections were of glass bottles, marbles, stamps, and puzzle jugs. In 1949, Hemphill moved to Manhattan and began to focus on modern European and American art and African sculpture, but after 1956 he concentrated exclusively on 19th and early 20th century American folk art. He often discovered artists during his extensive travels, especially in the American South.

In 1961, Hemphill became one of the six founding trustees of the Museum of Early American Folk Art, later named the Museum of American Folk Art, in New York City. Between 1964 and 1973, he was the museum's first curator and curated many exhibitions, helping to promote awareness of work created by self-taught or visionary artists. He later served as Trustee Emeritus for many years.

Between 1974 and 1988, Hemphill loaned portions of his extensive personal collection to 24 museums nationwide and in 1976, the American Bicentennial Commission selected works from his collection for a goodwill tour of Japan. He was named guest curator at the Brooklyn Museum in 1976 and at the Abby Aldrich Folk Art Collection in 1980, and often appeared as guest lecturer at various universities, the Smithsonian Institution, and at the Library of Congress. In 1986, Hemphill donated more than 400 folk art works to the Smithsonian Institution's American Art Museum, resulting in a landmark exhibition Made with Passion: The Hemphill Folk Art Collection of the National Museum of American Art.

Hemphill's publications include books Twentieth Century American Folk Art and Artists, co-authored with Julia Weissman in 1974, Folk Sculpture USA for the Brooklyn Museum in 1976, and Found in New York's North Country: The Folk Art of a Region, co-authored with Varick A. Chittenden in 1982 for the Munson-Williams-Proctor Institute.

Herbert Waide Hemphill, Jr. died on May 8, 1998 in New York City.
Provenance:
Herbert Waide Hemphill donated his papers in 5 installments between 1988 and 1996.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment. Use of audiovisual materials 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:
Art -- Collectors and collecting  Search this
Folk art -- Collectors and collecting  Search this
Curators -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Genre/Form:
Video recordings
Watercolors
Sketchbooks
Sound recordings
Photographs
Drawings
Poems
Reports
Prints
Interviews
Citation:
Herbert Waide Hemphill papers, 1776-1998, bulk 1876-1998. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.hempherb
See more items in:
Herbert Waide Hemphill papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-hempherb
Online Media:

Claire Falkenstein papers

Creator:
Falkenstein, Claire, 1908-1997  Search this
Names:
Coos Art Museum  Search this
Fresno Art Museum  Search this
Galerie Anderson-Mayer  Search this
Gallery Stadler  Search this
Jack Rutberg Fine Arts (Los Angeles, Calif.)  Search this
John Bolles Gallery (San Francisco, Calif.)  Search this
Los Angeles Museum of Art  Search this
Malvina Miller  Search this
Martha Jackson Gallery  Search this
Merging One Gallery  Search this
Mills College -- Faculty  Search this
Pond Farm Workshop  Search this
San Francisco Museum of Art  Search this
University of California, San Francisco. School of Fine Arts -- Faculty  Search this
Green, Ray, 1908-1997  Search this
Guggenheim, Peggy, 1898-  Search this
Kuh, Katharine  Search this
O'Donnell, May, 1906-2004  Search this
Sawyer, Kenneth B.  Search this
Still, Clyfford, 1904-  Search this
Still, Patricia  Search this
Tapie, Michel  Search this
Temko, Allan  Search this
Tobey, Mark  Search this
Wildenhain, Frans, 1905-1980  Search this
Extent:
42.8 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Drawings
Motion pictures (visual works)
Scrapbooks
Sketchbooks
Diaries
Photographs
Sketches
Date:
circa 1914-1997
bulk 1940-1990
Summary:
The papers of sculptor, painter, jewelry designer, and teacher Claire Falkenstein measure 42.8 linear feet and date from 1917 to her death in 1997. There is extensive correspondence with fellow artists, collectors, critics, friends, museums, and galleries. The collection also contains biographical materials, much of it collected and organized by Falkenstein, personal and business records, writings, diaries, exhibition files, commission files, teaching files, photographs, original artwork, scrapbooks, and printed materials. There is a short motion picture film of an interview with Falkenstein featuring the windows she designed for St. Basil's Church in Los Angeles.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of sculptor, painter, jewelry designer, and teacher Claire Falkenstein measure 42.8 linear feet and date from 1917 to her death in 1997. There is extensive correspondence with fellow artists, collectors, critics, friends, museums, and galleries. The collection also contains biographical materials, much of it collected and organized by Falkenstein, personal and business records, writings, diaries, exhibition files, commission files, teaching files, photographs, original artwork, scrapbooks, and printed materials. There is a short motion picture film of an interview with Falkenstein featuring the windows she designed for St. Basil's Church in Los Angeles.

Biographical material includes appointment calendars, awards and honorary degrees, interview transcripts, passports, resumes, wills, and scrapbooks. Scrapbooks were compiled by Falkenstein and focus primarily on her exhibitions at the Galerie Stadler and Gallery Meyer in 1959 and 1960. Also of interest are the "biography files" created and arranged by Falkenstein. These files contain material that she personally felt was the most important in documenting her activities each year. They include correspondence, exhibition catalogs, printed material, and invitations.

Measuring nine linear feet, correspondence is extensive and comprehensively documents Falkenstein's work, social life, relationships, and other business and personal activities. Correspondence dates from 1941 to 1997 and includes business letters and correspondence with friends and family. Her communications with friends, family, clients, gallery owners, collectors, museums, publishers, foundations, and grant agencies reveal many of her ideas and techniques. Individual correspondents include Ray Green, Peggy Guggenheim, Katharine Kuh, May O'Donnell, Ken Sawyer, Clyfford and Pat Still, Michel Tapie, Allan Temko, Mark Tobey, and Frans Wildenhain. Gallery and museum correspondence is with the San Francisco Museum of Art, Coos Art Museum, Los Angeles Museum of Art, Galerie Stadler (Paris), Gallery Mayer (Paris), Malvina Miller (New York), Martha Jackson Gallery (New York), Jack Rutberg Fine Arts (Los Angeles), Galerie Anderson-Mayer (Paris), and Bolles Gallery. Correspondence is also found in the Commission Files and Exhibition Files.

Personal and business records contain a wide variety of material documenting Falkenstein's business, financial, legal, professional, and personal transactions. Files are found for sales and prices, art inventories, smaller jewelry commissions, her work as a juror, her business with galleries, legal affairs and contracts, expenses, records of arts organizations to which she belonged, conferences, grants and fellowships, studio and house renovations, her Paris studio and Paris expenses, travel, donations, loans and consignments, conservation, art shipping, insurance, and taxes. Oversized visitor's logs contain comments from visitors to Falkenstein's studio in Venice, California.

Falkenstein maintained comprehensive documentation of her exhibitions from her first exhibition in the 1930s to the last one at the Merging One Gallery in 1996. Files include both a chronological record and individual record for nearly all of her exhibitions. Found with the files are correspondence, photographs, loan and shipping records, catalogs, announcements, clippings, articles, and other records. Most of the photographs related to exhibitions are found in the Photographs Series. The files for exhibitions at the Fresno Art Museum, Martha Jackson Gallery and Jack Rutberg Fine Art Gallery are particularly rich.

Commission files document nearly all of Falkenstein's public and private large-scale projects and often contain a visual record of the work, as well as correspondence, design notes, contracts, and expense reports. There is documentation of the St. Basils Church windows in Los Angeles; the Peggy Guggenheim gate in Venice, Italy; and the fountain at the California Savings and Loan, in Los Angeles; and many others. There is also a chronological record of her commissions. The bulk of the photographs of commissions are found in the Photograph series. Also, most of Falkenstein's jewelry design commissions are found in the Personal and Business Records series.

Falkenstein's work as a prolific writer, particularly in the 1940s and 1950s, is well-documented here through her numerous published articles in Arts and Architecture magazine, and the New York Herald-Tribune. Her work for Arts and Architecture was primarily written for the "Art Comments from San Francisco" section. She was living in Paris when she contributed an art news column to the New York Herald-Tribune. Also found here are five diaries and one journal dating from circa 1929-1978. The entries are inconsistent and concern mostly travel. The diaries from 1929 and 1934 are more personal. Falkenstein also maintained extensive notes and notebooks about artwork ideas, observations about art, research, and even drafts of letters. There are also many notes about various topics, including art and class notes. Additional writings are eclectic and cover a wide range of topics, including music, poetry, the script for Falkestein's film entitled Touching the Quick, and drafts of her unpublished book on murals. A handful of writings by others are found, most with annotations by Falkenstein.

Teaching files include Falkenstein's numerous lectures given while teaching at Mills College, Pond Farm Workshops, and California School of Fine Arts, and various symposiums and conferences. Also found are lesson plans, contracts, scattered correspondence, and notes. The files on her tenure at the Pond Farm Workshops are particularly interesting, with notes about her fellow teacher Frans Wildenhain and correspondence with workshop owners, Jane and Gordon Herr.

There are extensive photographs of Falkenstein, her family and friends, colleagues, commissions, exhibitions, and works of art. Included are many images of Falkenstein, of Falkenstien with her art, of Falkentstien working, and of Falkenstein's studio. There are numerous photographs of Falkenstein with friends, family, and colleagues in social or work settings. Also found are photographs of exhibition openings, installation views, and works of art exhibited. Additional photographs document Falkenstein's commissions, including images of her at work. Additional images of commissions may also be found in the Commission Series, but the bulk are filed here. There are numerous photographs of Falkenstein's works of art, including drawings, sculpture, jewelry, murals, lamps, and ceramics.

Falkenstein's papers include a large amount of sketches, sketchbooks, and drawings. Many of the sketches and drawings relate to her ideas about commissions and large sculpture, jewelry designs, and general sketches. Sketches are also found in the Commission Files. Also included are drawings by Mark Tobey and Michel Tapie, and others.

Finally, printed materials include general exhibition catalogs, newspapers clippings, and clippings of articles by and about Falkenstein. Also included are books that have been inscribed and signed by the author.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into 9 series:

Series 1: Biographical Materials, 1934-1997 (Box 1-4, 41; 4.3 linear feet)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1931-1997 (Box 5-13; 9 linear feet)

Series 3: Personal and Business Records, 1936-1997 (Box 14-17, 41, 46-49; 4.2 linear feet)

Series 4: Exhibitions, 1930-1996 (Box 18-21, 42, OV 50; 3.3 linear feet)

Series 5. Commissions, 1930-1992 (Box 21-22, OV 50-54 ; 2.0 linear feet)

Series 6: Writings, circa 1929-1993 (Box 22-26, 42, 55; 4.6 linear feet)

Series 7: Teaching Files, 1929-1995 (Box 26; .8 linear feet)

Series 8: Photographs, circa 1917-1997 (Box 27-35, 43, 55-56; 9.5 linear feet)

Series 9: Artwork, circa 1937-1995 (Box 36-37, 44, 57; 2.0 linear feet)

Series 10: Printed Materials, circa 1914-1990 (Box 37-40, 45, 58; 3.9 linear feet)
Biographical Note:
Claire Falkenstein (1908-1997) spent the majority of her life working as an artist, sculptor, jewelry designer, teacher, and writer in California.

Claire Falkenstein was born in 1908 and grew up in Coos Bay, Oregon. In 1920, Falkenstein and her family moved to Berkeley, California, where she attended high school and then college at the University of California at Berkeley, studying philosophy, anthropology, and art. She graduated in 1930. Falkenstein had her first solo show at the East-West Gallery in San Francisco in 1930, the only member of her class to have an exhibition before graduation.

During the early 1930s, Falkenstein studied at Mills College with modernist sculptor Alexander Archipenko. There she also met Bauhaus artists Laszlo Moholy-Nagy and Gyorgy Kepes. Falkenstein married her high school sweetheart, Richard McCarthy in 1936.

In 1944, Falkenstein had her first New York exhibition at the Bonestall Gallery. At that time, Falkenstein's primary mediums were stone and wood. However, she became increasingly experimental with new materials that included sheet aluminum, Cor-Ten steel, glass, plastics, and welded wire rods while maintaining a connection to organic and natural forms. Her work in jewelry design was an outlet for exploring these new materials, forms, and techniques on a small scale. As her work grew physically larger, so did her recognition and it was her work in sculpture that won her a faculty appointment at the California School of Fine Arts from 1947-1949. It was here that she met Patricia and Clyfford Still, Hassel Smith, and Richard Diebenkorn.

In 1948, Falkenstein was invited to exhibit at the Salon des Realites Nouvelle in Paris, her first European show. She eventually moved to Europe in 1950 and had studios in Paris, Venice, and Rome. While in Europe, Falkenstein executed a number of large scale commissions, including the stair screen for Galerie Stadler (1955), grotto gates for Princess Pignatelli's villa in Rome (1957), and the bronze, steel, and the glass gate at the Peggy Guggenheim Museum in Venice (1961). While in Paris, she became acquainted with noted art critic Michel Tapie, with whom she maintained a life-long friendship.

During the 1940s and 1950s Falkenstein was a regular contributor to Arts and Architecture magazine, most often writing the "Art Comments from San Francisco" section. While in Paris, she also wrote a column on art news for the New York Herald Tribune.

Falkenstein returned to the United States in 1962, eventually renovating a studio space in Venice, California. It was here that she conceived her largest commissions. In 1965, Falkenstein received a commission from the California Savings and Loan to create a sculpture for a large fountain at the front of the bank in downtown Los Angeles. The copper tube fountain, entitled "Structure and Flow #2," was the first of many large scale public art commissions that Falkenstein completed during her years in California. Her most important commission in the United States, completed in 1969, was for the doors, rectory gates and grills and stained-glass windows for St. Basil's Church on Wilshire Boulevard in Los Angeles. The eight doors and fifteen rectory screens, including 80 foot high windows in the nave, were an expansion of the "never ending screen" concept that Falkenstein executed with the Pignatelli commission in Rome. She continued to use this motif in her work throughout her career.

Claire Falkenstein worked as an arts instructor, visiting artist, and guest lecturer at many colleges, workshops, and schools in California. Her first position was at Mills College from 1946-1947. Shortly thereafter, she was appointed to the faculty at the California School of Fine Arts and later taught in the Extension Divisions of the University of California, Berkeley. She taught classes at California State Polytechnic University, California State University at Davis, and the Anna Head School. Falkenstein also taught art at the Pond Farm Workshops in California, and lectured at numerous colleges and museums. She served on many juried art shows in Southern California.

Falkenstein was acquainted with many artists, writers, instructors, collectors, gallery owners, and critics. Close friends included Esther and Bob Robles, Clyfford and Patricia Still, Michel Tapie, Allan Temko, Mark Tobey, Frans Wildenhain, and other notable figures in the art world.

Falkenstein continued to complete large scale private and public commissioned sculptures during the 1960s through the 1980s, including work for the University of Southern California, Hyland Biological Laboratory, California State University at Dominquez Hills and the California State Department of Motor Vehicles. Throughout her career, Falkenstein's work was featured in numerous exhibitions across the country. Her sculpture and other artwork can be found in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Coos Art Museum, Harvard University Art Museum, University of Southern California Fisher Museum of Art, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and the Tate Gallery.

Falkenstein died in 1997 at the age of 89.
Related Material:
The Archives of American Art also holds two oral history interviews with Claire Falkenstein. The interview on April 13, 1965 was conducted by Betty Hoag and the one on March 2 and 21, 1995 was conducted by Paul Karlstrom.
Provenance:
The Claire Falkenstein papers were donated in 1997 by Steffan Wacholtz and Nancy Kendall, trustees for the Claire Falkenstein Trust.
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:
Painters -- California  Search this
Topic:
Women artists  Search this
Sculptors -- California  Search this
Interviews  Search this
Awards  Search this
Transcripts  Search this
Articles  Search this
Designers -- California  Search this
Drafts (documents)  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Poetry  Search this
Scripts  Search this
Notebooks  Search this
Artists' studios  Search this
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Art patronage  Search this
Educators -- California  Search this
Jewelry -- Design  Search this
Sculptors -- France -- Paris  Search this
Genre/Form:
Drawings
Motion pictures (visual works)
Scrapbooks
Sketchbooks
Diaries
Photographs
Sketches
Citation:
Claire Falkenstein papers, circa 1914-1997, bulk 1940-1990. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.falkclai
See more items in:
Claire Falkenstein papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-falkclai
Online Media:

Beatrice Wood papers, 1894-1998, bulk 1930-1990

Creator:
Wood, Beatrice, 1893-1998  Search this
Wood, Beatrice, 1893-1998  Search this
Subject:
Nin, Anaïs  Search this
Rosencrantz, Esther  Search this
Roché, Henri Pierre  Search this
Arensberg, Walter  Search this
Arensberg, Louise S. (Louise Stevenson)  Search this
Duchamp, Marcel  Search this
Hoag, Stephen Asa  Search this
Hapgood, Elizabeth Reynolds  Search this
John Waller, Fine Ceramics (Firm : Los Angeles, Calif.)  Search this
Zachary Waller Gallery (Los Angeles, Calif.)  Search this
Garth Clark Gallery (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Type:
Drafts (documents)
Interviews
Photographs
Illustrated letters
Notes
Watercolors
Diaries
Transcripts
Lithographs
Short stories
Illustrations
Designs
Drawings
Bookplates
Topic:
Art -- Philosophy  Search this
Authors -- California  Search this
Glazes -- Formulae  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Actresses -- United States  Search this
Ceramicists -- California  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- California  Search this
Women ceramicists  Search this
Theme:
Diaries  Search this
Women  Search this
Lives of American Artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)9363
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211559
AAA_collcode_woodbeat
Theme:
Diaries
Women
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211559
Online Media:

Billy Al Bengston papers, circa 1940s-1989, bulk 1960-1988

Creator:
Bengston, Billy Al, 1934-  Search this
Bengston, Billy Al, 1934-  Search this
Subject:
Ruscha, Edward  Search this
Plagens, Peter  Search this
Motherwell, Robert  Search this
Flavin, Dan  Search this
Diebenkorn, Richard  Search this
Chamberlain, John  Search this
Goode, Joe  Search this
Lichtenstein, Roy  Search this
Andre, Carl  Search this
Alexander, Peter  Search this
Altoon, John  Search this
Martha Jackson Gallery  Search this
James Corcoran Gallery  Search this
Ferus Gallery (Los Angeles, Calif.)  Search this
John Berggruen Gallery (San Francisco, Calif.)  Search this
Type:
Interviews
Photographs
Topic:
Works of art  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Theme:
Art Market  Search this
Lives of American Artists  Search this
Audio - Visual  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)10220
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)213296
AAA_collcode_bengbill
Theme:
Art Market
Lives of American Artists
Audio - Visual
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_213296
Online Media:

Billy Al Bengston papers

Creator:
Bengston, Billy Al  Search this
Names:
Ferus Gallery (Los Angeles, Calif.)  Search this
James Corcoran Gallery  Search this
John Berggruen Gallery (San Francisco, Calif.)  Search this
Martha Jackson Gallery  Search this
Alexander, Peter, 1939-  Search this
Altoon, John, 1925-  Search this
Andre, Carl, 1935-  Search this
Chamberlain, John, 1927-2011  Search this
Diebenkorn, Richard, 1922-1993  Search this
Flavin, Dan, 1933-  Search this
Goode, Joe, 1937-  Search this
Lichtenstein, Roy, 1923-1997  Search this
Motherwell, Robert  Search this
Plagens, Peter  Search this
Ruscha, Edward  Search this
Extent:
10.4 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Interviews
Photographs
Date:
circa 1940s-1989
bulk 1960-1988
Summary:
The papers of southern California Pop artist Billy Al Bengston measure 10.4 linear feet and date from circa 1940s to 1989, with the bulk of the materials dating from 1960 to 1988. The collection documents the life and work of the artist through biographical materials, correspondence, personal business records, gallery and museum files, teaching files, project and commission files, scattered artwork, printed materials, and photographs.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of Billy Al Bengston measure 10.4 linear feet and date from circa 1940s to 1989, with the bulk of the materials dating from 1960 to 1988. The collection documents the life and work of the southern California artist through biographical materials, correspondence, personal business records, gallery and museum files, teaching files, project and commission files, scattered artwork, printed materials, and photographs.

Found within the biographical materials series are three feet of calendars which extensively document Bengston's personal and professional activities for fourteen years, and include ephemera related to these activities. This series also includes health records, wills, and passports.

Correspondence is with galleries, museums, universities, businesses, friends, and colleagues, and primarily concerns exhibitions, sales, consignments, commissions, and Bengston's personal finances. Bengston's relationship with the James Corcoran Gallery, Janie C. Lee Gallery, John Berggruen Gallery, Martha Jackson Gallery, and Texas Gallery are well-documented here, as well as in the Museum and Gallery Files series. Also found is a limited amount of personal correspondence with collectors, researchers, and friends. A few letters from other artists, including Peter Plagens and a letter from Richard Diebenkorn are interfiled here.

Bengston's professional relationships with galleries, museums, and universities are well-documented in the gallery and museum files, including the galleries mentioned above, Ferus Gallery, and others. Lists of consignments and prices, invoices, records of sales, loan agreement forms, shipping receipts, exhibition checklists, and exhibition floor plans provide information about sales, exhibitions, and loans. A few files provide further information about Bengston teaching activities. His personal business records include art sales records, price lists, lists of purchases, records of investment, and personal finance records. Project files include correspondence, notes, and printed materials related to Bengston's commissions for artwork and personal projects, including a book he worked on with Ed Ruscha, Business Cards.

Writings by Bengston include responses to exhibitions of West Coast art and his thoughts on his career, art, the artistic community, motorcycles, as well as a recollection of John Altoon. Also found are questionnaires sent out by Bengston for an art survey, with responses from Peter Alexander, Carl Andre, John Chamberlain, Dan Flavin, Joe Goode, Robert Graham, Roy Lichtenstein, Robert Motherwell, Ed Ruscha, and others. Writings by others consist primarily of exhibition catalog essays, manuscripts of interviews with Bengston, and other writings about Bengston. Also found is an essay by Walter Hopps. Photographs of Bengston include a family picture from the 1940s, Bengston at work on projects in Los Angeles and Syracuse, New York, and Bengston at social events. Other photographs consist of pictures of friends and artists, Bengston's artwork, documentary evidence of damaged artwork, and of commission sites.

Printed materials from the 1960s - 1980s include clippings, full articles, exhibition announcements and catalogs, and posters. They document exhibitions, art in southern California, and society and art events. The collection houses limited amounts of artwork including sketches, cut-outs, doodles and drawings.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into 10 series:

Series 1: Biographical Materials, 1958-1987 (Boxes 1-4, 11; 3.7 linear feet)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1966-1989 (Boxes 4-6; 1.75 linear feet)

Series 3: Gallery and Museum Files, 1961-1989 (Boxes 6-7; 1.5 linear feet)

Series 4: Teaching Records, 1968-1982 (Box 7; 7 folders)

Series 5: Personal Business Records, circa 1960-1987 (Boxes 7-8; 1.0 linear foot)

Series 6: Project Files, 1968-1987 (Boxes 8-9; 0.25 linear feet)

Series 7: Writings, 1967-circa 1988 (Box 9, OV 12; 0.25 linear feet)

Series 8: Artwork, 1960s-1987 (Box 9; 7 folders)

Series 9: Printed Materials, 1958-1988 (Boxes 9-10, OV 12-13; 1.25 linear feet)

Series 10: Photographs, circa 1940s-1987 (Box 10; 0.5 linear feet)
Biographical Note:
Billy Al Bengston was born in Dodge City, Kansas on June 7, 1934. After moving back and forth from Kansas to California multiple times, he and his family settled in Los Angeles in 1948. While attending the Manual Arts High School, Bengston became interested in art, especially ceramics. After a brief stint at Los Angeles Junior College, Bengston worked as a beach attendant at Doheny State Beach. While working there he met fellow surfer and future ceramicist Kenneth Price, who became one of Bengston's closest friends. In 1953, he reenrolled in Los Angeles Junior College to study ceramics. For the next four years he attended both the California College of Arts and Crafts and the Los Angeles County Art Institute (now the Otis Art Institute of Parsons School of Design). At these institutions he studied with Richard Diebenkorn, Sabro Hasegawa, Nathan Oliveira, and Peter Voulkos.

Around 1957, Bengston shifted his emphasis from ceramics to painting, and became affiliated with the Ferus Gallery in Los Angeles, founded that same year by Edward Kienholz and Walter Hopps. Bengston's first solo exhibition was held at the Ferus Gallery in 1958, and a second followed in 1960. At this time Bengston began to work with Pop icons combined with Color Field abstractions. His early bold paintings often featured symmetrical strong color compositions with a central image of a valentine, star, cross, chevron, or iris. The irises he called "draculas," after Kenneth Price remarked that they resembled Dracula flying through a window. He first showed his chevron paintings in 1962 at the Martha Jackson Gallery in New York. In the early 1960s, Bengston extended his imagery to the California subculture and created paintings of leisure time activities, focusing on motorcycles, racing, and scuba diving - his own interests as well.

Throughout his career, Bengston experimented with technique and materials. He experimented with automobile lacquer and spray painting techniques associated with car customization. He also used non-traditional surfaces, such as masonite and aluminum. In 1965, Bengston began creating paintings on sheets of aluminum into which he hammered dents and sometimes bent and buckled; these subsequently came to be known as "dentos." Along with painting, Bengston has also created watercolors, ceramics, and furniture. He was also one of the artists selected by Carol and Roy Doumani to design their home.

Bengston first visited Hawaii in 1974, and after several subsequent trips, established a second studio there in 1979. The work Bengston created in the following years was characterized by the use of tropical colors and representational images of running figures, airplanes, and the moon. In 1988, the Contemporary Arts Museum in Houston organized a retrospective entitled "Billy Al Bengston: Paintings of Three Decades," which traveled to the Oakland Museum, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and the Contemporary Museum of Art, Honolulu. Bengston also completed several years as an art instructor and lecturer at the Chouinard Art Institute in Los Angeles and The University of California at Los Angeles. Bengston continues to create and exhibit new work.
Related Material:
Found in the Archives of American Art are oral history interviews with Bengston conducted by Susan Larsen, September 9, 1980, and Susan Ford Morgan, August 2-October 7, 2002. Also found are portraits of Bengston in the Photographs of artists taken by Mimi Jacobs collection, and a rare copy of the book Business Cards by Bengston and Ed Ruscha in the Wallace Berman papers.
Provenance:
The collection was donated to the Archives of American Art by Billy Al Bengston in 1990.
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.
Occupation:
Painters -- California  Search this
Topic:
Works of art  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Photographs
Citation:
Billy Al Bengston papers, circa 1940s-1989 (bulk 1960-1988). Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.bengbill
See more items in:
Billy Al Bengston papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-bengbill

Oral history interview with David Shaner, 2001 June 17

Interviewee:
Shaner, David, 1934-  Search this
Shaner, David, 1934-  Search this
Interviewer:
Williams, Gerald, 1926-2014  Search this
Subject:
Archie Bray Foundation  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Ceramics. -- Economic aspects  Search this
Ceramics -- Equipment and supplies  Search this
Ceramics -- Study and teaching  Search this
Ceramics -- Technique  Search this
Ceramicists -- interviews -- Montana  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Theme:
Craft  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)13277
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)227989
AAA_collcode_shaner01
Theme:
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_227989
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Warren MacKenzie, 2002 October 29

Interviewee:
MacKenzie, Warren, 1924-2018  Search this
MacKenzie, Warren, 1924-2018  Search this
Interviewer:
Silberman, Robert B. (Robert Bruce),, 1950-  Search this
Subject:
Leach, Bernard  Search this
Hamada, Shōji  Search this
MacKenzie, Alixandra Kolesky  Search this
Art Institute of Chicago  Search this
University of Minnesota  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Ceramicists -- Minnesota -- Interviews  Search this
Ceramics. -- Economic aspects  Search this
Ceramics -- Study and teaching  Search this
Ceramics -- Technique  Search this
Ceramics -- Equipment and supplies  Search this
Ceramics -- Japan  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Theme:
Craft  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)12417
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)238989
AAA_collcode_macken02
Theme:
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_238989
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Michael Simon, 2005 September 27-28

Interviewee:
Simon, Michael, 1947-  Search this
Simon, Michael, 1947-  Search this
Interviewer:
Shapiro, Mark, 1955-  Search this
Subject:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Ceramicists -- Georgia -- Interviews  Search this
Ceramics -- Technique  Search this
Ceramics -- Equipment and supplies  Search this
Ceramics. -- Economic aspects  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Theme:
Craft  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)11797
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)255546
AAA_collcode_simon05
Theme:
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_255546
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Kurt Weiser, 2006 May 22

Interviewee:
Weiser, Kurt D., 1950-  Search this
Weiser, Kurt D., 1950-  Search this
Interviewer:
Held, Peter, 1951-  Search this
Subject:
Coleman, Thomas  Search this
Babu, Victor  Search this
Hensley, Rick  Search this
Rice, Jackie  Search this
Labow, Ed  Search this
Stevenson, John  Search this
Archie Bray Foundation  Search this
Kansas City Art Institute  Search this
Interlochen Arts Academy (Interlochen, Mich.)  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Ceramics -- Technique  Search this
Ceramics. -- Economic aspects  Search this
Ceramics -- Study and teaching  Search this
Ceramicists -- Arizona -- Interviews  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Theme:
Craft  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)13585
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)258740
AAA_collcode_weiser06
Theme:
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_258740
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Val Cushing, 2001 April 16

Interviewee:
Cushing, Val M., 1931-  Search this
Cushing, Val M., 1931-  Search this
Interviewer:
Carney, Margaret, 1949-  Search this
Subject:
Wildenhain, Marguerite  Search this
Archie Bray Foundation  Search this
Alfred University  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Ceramics -- Study and teaching  Search this
Ceramics -- Technique  Search this
Ceramics -- Equipment and supplies  Search this
Glazing (Ceramics)  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Theme:
Craft  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)12255
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)226929
AAA_collcode_cushin01
Theme:
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_226929
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Michael Cohen, 2001 August 11

Interviewee:
Cohen, Michael, 1936-  Search this
Cohen, Michael, 1936-  Search this
Interviewer:
Williams, Gerald, 1926-2014  Search this
Subject:
Burke, Ron  Search this
Glick, John Parker  Search this
Goodwin, Harriet  Search this
Leach, Bernard  Search this
Merritt, Francis Sumner  Search this
Sedestrom, Bob  Search this
Voulkos, Peter  Search this
Wyman, William  Search this
Massachusetts College of Art  Search this
Cranbrook Academy of Art  Search this
Haystack Mountain School of Crafts  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Ceramics -- Equipment and supplies  Search this
Ceramics -- Study and teaching  Search this
Ceramics -- Technique  Search this
Ceramics. -- Economic aspects  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Theme:
Craft  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)11754
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)227986
AAA_collcode_cohen01
Theme:
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_227986
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Ralph Bacerra, 2004 April 7-19

Interviewee:
Bacerra, Ralph C., 1938-2008  Search this
Bacerra, Ralph C., 1938-2008  Search this
Interviewer:
Lloyd, Frank, 1951-  Search this
Subject:
Andreson, Laura  Search this
Kester, Bernard  Search this
Maloof, Sam  Search this
Hamada, Shōji  Search this
Heino, Otto  Search this
Heino, Vivika  Search this
Peterson, Susan  Search this
Rady, Elsa  Search this
Saxe, Adrian Anthony  Search this
Voulkos, Peter  Search this
Chouinard Art Institute (Los Angeles, Calif.)  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Ceramicists -- California -- Los Angeles -- Interviews  Search this
Ceramics. -- Economic aspects  Search this
Ceramics -- Study and teaching  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Theme:
Craft  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)12942
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)247258
AAA_collcode_bacerr04
Theme:
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_247258
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Ralph Bacerra

Interviewee:
Bacerra, Ralph, 1938-2008  Search this
Interviewer:
Lloyd, Frank, 1951-  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
Chouinard Art Institute (Los Angeles, Calif.) -- Faculty  Search this
Chouinard Art Institute (Los Angeles, Calif.) -- Students  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Andreson, Laura  Search this
Hamada, Shōji, 1894-1978  Search this
Heino, Otto, 1915-2009  Search this
Heino, Vivika, 1910-1995  Search this
Kester, Bernard  Search this
Maloof, Sam  Search this
Peterson, Susan, 1925-2009  Search this
Rady, Elsa, 1943-  Search this
Saxe, Adrian Anthony, 1943-  Search this
Voulkos, Peter, 1924-2002  Search this
Extent:
45 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
2004 April 7-19
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Ralph Bacerra conducted 2004 April 7-19, by Frank Lloyd, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, in Los Angeles, California.
Bacerra speaks of his family background; his high school art teachers; attending Chouinard Art Institute and his friendship with his ceramics instructor Vivika Heino and her husband Otto; the interaction among ceramicists in Los Angeles around 1960; attending a workshop taught by Shoji Hamada; teaching at Chouinard Art Institute; building a studio; teaching a workshop at Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts; traveling to Japan and Taiwan and the influence of Asian ceramics on his artwork. Bacerra also speaks of his daily work routine; the importance of glaze technology; changes in ceramic education and the market for ceramics in the last 50 years; exhibiting works at American Hand, Garth Clark Galleries, and Frank Lloyd Gallery; taking part in pivotal exhibitions including "Objects: USA"; attending National Council for the Education of Ceramic Arts conferences and the current sense of community among early ceramic artists; the importance of craft publications and critical writing; commissions completed throughout his career; attending museums for ideas and inspiration; teaching and the careers of his former students; and how reviews impact his work. Bacerra recalls Susan Peterson, Peter Voulkos, Bernard Kester, Laura Andreson, Sam Maloof, Elsa Rady, Adrian Saxe, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Ralph Bacerra (1938-2008) was a ceramicist of Los Angeles, California. Frank Lloyd is a gallery owner from Santa Monica, California.
General:
Originally recorded 2 sound discs. Reformatted in 2010 as 9 digital wav files. Duration is 2 hr., 23 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:
Ceramicists -- California -- Los Angeles -- Interviews  Search this
Ceramics. -- Economic aspects  Search this
Ceramics -- Study and teaching  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.bacerr04
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-bacerr04

Oral history interview with Jun Kaneko

Interviewee:
Kaneko, Jun, 1942-  Search this
Interviewer:
McInnes, Mary, 1956-  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Extent:
43 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
2005 May 23- 24
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Jun Kaneko conducted 2005 May 23-24, by Mary Drach McInnes, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at the artist's studio, in Omaha, Nebraska.
Kaneko speaks of his parents and grandparents; growing up in Japan; taking art lessons as a child; moving to Los Angeles; living with ceramic collectors Fred and Mary Marer; attending Chouinard Art Institute; making and exhibiting his first ceramic pieces; working as a studio assistant to Peter Voulkos; being artist in residence at the Archie Bray Foundation; building his first studio; getting a graduate degree at Scripps College; returning to Japan and building a studio; being hired to teach at Cranbrook Academy of Art; working with art dealers; how the ceramics market has changed during his career; working in the international craft market; his current studio and living space; the inspiration for his work; his interest in patternmaking; making large-scale pieces; why he likes clay; selection of color; moving to Omaha; traveling and working on various projects; working at industrial sites; making ceramic tile walls; influential artists; how critics view his work; the future of ceramic art; and working in different media. Kaneko also recalls Jerry Rothman, Paul Soldner, Jim Melchert, Ralph Bacerra, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Jun Kaneko (1942- ) is a ceramicist and sculptor from Omaha, Nebraska. Mary Drach McInnes is an art history professor from Alfred Station, N.Y.
General:
Originally recorded on 3 sound discs. Reformatted in 2010 as 6 digital wav files. Duration is 3 hr., 43 min.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.
Occupation:
Ceramicists  Search this
Topic:
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Asian American art  Search this
Asian American artists  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Asian American sculptors  Search this
Asian American ceramicists  Search this
Ceramicists -- Nebraska -- Interviews  Search this
Function:
Artists' studios
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.kaneko05
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-kaneko05

Oral history interview with Michael Simon

Interviewee:
Simon, Michael, 1947-  Search this
Interviewer:
Shapiro, Mark, 1955-  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Extent:
52 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
2005 September 27-28
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Michael Simon conducted 2005 September 27-28, by Mark Shapiro, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at the artist's home, in Colbert, Georgia.
Simon discusses studying at University of Minnesota with Warren MacKenzie; the counterculture and chaotic atmosphere at the university in the late 1960s; moving to Athens, Georgia, after college to open a studio on Jerry Chappelle's farm; his first pottery sales; obtaining conscientious objector status and working at a hospital in Athens; the influence of Bernard Leach and Shoji Hamada on his work; developing shapes and expanding his repertoire; being inspired by Korean folk potters and by other Asian pottery; teaching at the Penland School of Arts and Crafts and being influenced by fellow potters there; art fairs in Atlanta, Florida, and elsewhere; using various materials for his pots, including Georgia kaolin and grolleg; applying for a fellowship at the University of Georgia, where he completed his Master's of Fine Arts; seeing Mark Pharis's pots in the summer of 1980, which compelled him to build his own salt kiln, which changed subsequent work dramatically; his marriage to Susan Roberts in 1992; experimenting with images on his pots, including fish and bamboo; getting a large commission for dinner plates from the Nakato Restaurant in Atlanta, Georgia, one of the city's oldest sushi restaurants; visiting the Freer Sackler Galleries and being inspired by Chinese Yangshao pottery from the Neolithic period; the influence of Persian jars on his work; the success of his pottery sales with Ron Myers; going to Cortona, Italy, to teach pottery for the University of Georgia; teaching at a school in Santiago, Chile, exploring the countryside, and learning Chilean pottery techniques; the writing of Michael Cardew and its influence on his work and career; what constitutes a typical work day and what motivates him; and the community of American potters and the support he has received over the years. Simon also recalls Angel Lillo, Laurie Samuelson, Gib Krohn, Mark Pharis, Wayne Branum, Sandra Simon (née Lindstrom), Earl McCutcheon, Shoji Hamada, Cynthia Bringle, Ron Myers, Andy Nasisse, Robert Briscoe, Michael Cardew, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Michael Simon (1947- ) is a ceramist from Colbert, Georgia. Mark Shapiro (1955- ) is a ceramist from Worthington, Massachusetts.
General:
Originally recorded on 3 sound discs. Reformatted in 2010 as 8 digital wav files. Duration is 3 hr., 30 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.
Topic:
Ceramicists -- Georgia -- Interviews  Search this
Ceramics -- Technique  Search this
Ceramics -- Equipment and supplies  Search this
Ceramics. -- Economic aspects  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.simon05
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-simon05

Oral history interview with Val Cushing

Interviewee:
Cushing, Val M.  Search this
Interviewer:
Carney, Margaret, 1949-  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
Alfred University -- Faculty  Search this
Alfred University -- Students  Search this
Archie Bray Foundation  Search this
Archie Bray Foundation -- Faculty  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Wildenhain, Marguerite  Search this
Extent:
46 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
2001 April 16
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Val Cushing conducted 2001 April 16, by Margaret Carney, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, in Cushing's studio, Alfred Station, New York.
Cushing speaks of his early interest in drawing; applying to Alfred University without a portfolio and being accepted on an athletic scholarship to play football; his teachers at Alfred including Katherine Nelson, Charles Harder, Marion Fosdick, Kurt Ekdahl, and Dan Rhodes; his classmates at Alfred including Herb Cohen, Marty Moskof, Marty Chodos, Luis Mendez, Ed Pettengill, and Richard Homer; the influence of Marguerite Wildenhain, who came to Alfred to teach for two weeks in 1952 (Cushing's senior year); his first job making pots at Santa's Workshop in Adirondack Mountains in New York in 1951, and the value of throwing every day; learning that "technique is not enough"; his travels; serving in the military police in Fort Dix, New Jersey, during the Korean War; visiting the Metropolitan Museum to sketch pots; meeting his wife Elsie Brown, who was private-duty nurse in New York; Charles Harder as an administrator and teacher; attending graduate school at Alfred on the G.I. Bill from 1954 to 1956; his decision to become teacher rather than full-time potter at the suggestion of Charles Harder; teaching at University of Illinois in 1956 and then Alfred University in 1957; the "famous" dialogues between Charles Harder and Bernard Leach; the importance of designing functional handmade objects; the evolution of the American craft market; his work for Andover China; exhibitions; his close-knit ceramics community in the 1950s and 1960s; his relationships with galleries including American Hand and The Farrell Collection in Washington, D.C., Helen Drutt Gallery and the Works Gallery in Philadelphia, The Signature Shop & Gallery in Atlanta, Martha Schneider Gallery in Chicago, and Cedar Creek Gallery in Creedmoor, North Carolina; teaching at Penland, Haystack, Arrowmont, Archie Bray, and Anderson Ranch; "the Alfred connection at Archie Bray" and his grant to study at Archie Bray in 1968; the importance of Alfred's summer school to the history of contemporary clay in America; the value of university training; Bob Turner's and Ted Randal's influence on his work through their "philosophic stance" and "presence as artists"; his working space and his 1983 NEA grant to adapt an existing barn for use as a studio; the influence of nature on his work; working with kick wheel, Soldner wheel, Venco Pug Mill, natural gas and electric kilns; his glaze expertise; opportunities for experimentation; his love of jazz music and its influence on his working methods; pricing his pots; commissions; ceramic workshops as theatrical "performances" and an American phenomenon; the role of specialized periodicals in the craft field; the difference between craft critics and painting and sculpture critics; and the place of ceramics in museum collections in the United States and abroad.
Cushing also talks about his involvement with NCECA [The National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts], the American Craft Council, and the American Ceramics Society; the lack of political and social commentary in his work; his teaching experiences in Europe and Asia; his participation in the opening of The Shigaraki Ceramic Cultural Park in Japan; and the importance of ceramic history for the contemporary ceramist. He also recalls Susan Peterson, Bill Pitney, Marv Rickel, Don Frith, Winslow Anderson, Ken Deavers, Joan Mondale, Joan Farrell, Don Reitz, Gerry Williams, Bill Parry, Ken Ferguson, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Val Cushing (1931- ) is a ceramic artist and potter from Alfred Station, New York. Margaret Carney (1949- ) is the director of the Schein Joseph International Museum of Ceramic Art in Alfred, New York.
General:
Originally recorded on 3 sound cassettes. Reformatted in 2010 as 6 digital wav files. Duration is 3 hr.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.
Occupation:
Ceramicists -- New York (State)  Search this
Topic:
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Ceramics -- Study and teaching  Search this
Ceramics -- Technique  Search this
Ceramics -- Equipment and supplies  Search this
Glazing (Ceramics)  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.cushin01
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-cushin01

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