The papers of sculptor, writer, and earthworks artist Robert Smithson and his wife, sculptor, filmmaker, and earthworks artist Nancy Holt measure 15.1 linear feet and date from 1905 to 1987, with the bulk of the material dating from 1952 to 1987. The papers consist of Smithson's biographical material; business and personal correspondence, much of it with artists; interview transcripts; extensive writings and project files; financial records; printed material; a scrapbook of clippings; holiday cards with original prints and sketches; photographic material; and artifacts. Also found are project files related to Nancy Holt's motion picture film Pine Barrens and her seminal environmental work of art Sun Tunnels, including a video documentary about Sun Tunnels.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of sculptor, writer, and earthworks artist Robert Smithson and his wife, sculptor, filmmaker, and earthworks artist Nancy Holt measure 15.1 linear feet and date from 1905 to 1987, with the bulk of the material dating from 1952 to 1987. The papers consist of Smithson's biographical material; business and personal correspondence, much of it with artists; interview transcripts; extensive writings and project files; financial records; printed material; a scrapbook of clippings; holiday cards with original prints and sketches; photographic material; and artifacts. Also found are project files related to Nancy Holt's film Pine Barrens and her seminal environmental work of art Sun Tunnels, including a video documentary about Sun Tunnels.
Biographical material includes Robert Smithson's curriculum vitae, personal identification and medical documents, eight engagement/day planners Smithson and Holt maintained from 1966 to 1973, and Smithson's funeral register.
Correspondence is primarily with Smithson's family, friends, fellow artists, and business associates discussing personal relationships, proposed art projects, and exhibitions. Correspondents of note include Carl Andre, the Dwan Gallery (Virginia Dwan), Dan Graham, Will Insley, Ray Johnson, Gyorgy Kepes, Sol Lewitt, Lucy Lippard, and Dennis Wheeler. There is also substantial correspondence received by Holt upon Smithson's death in 1973, and between Holt and the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art regarding Smithson's retrospective exhibition in 1982.
There are nine interview transcripts with Smithson discussing his works and his general philosophy on art, and one transcript of the Andrew Dickson White Museum's Earth Art Symposium (1969) featuring the following artists: Mike Hiezer, Dennis Oppenheim, Robert Smithson, Neil Jenney, Gunther Uecker, Jan Dibbets, Richard Long, and Hans Haacke.
Writings are substantial and include 73 drafts of published and unpublished essays by Smithson on art, artists, and works in progress. The series also includes poems by Smithson, six notebooks containing notes and sketches by Smithson, and drafts of writings sent to Smithson and Holt by friends and colleagues, including Carl Andre, Terry Atkinson, Dan Flavin, Dan Graham, and Jack Thibeau.
Project files contain correspondence, project instructions, diagrams and sketches, research materials, photographic material, and maps related to over 50 of Smithson's artworks. These include concepts, proposed projects, sculptures, non-sites, and earthwork projects, including Spiral Jetty, Broken Circle, and Spiral Hill.
Personal business records include gallery related loan arrangements and receipts for miscellaneous art supplies. Financial records include tax forms and preparation documents, including cancelled checks, receipts, statements, and related correspondence.
Printed materials include books, clippings, and periodicals related to Smithson, either containing writings or sketches by him, or containing articles reviewing his work. There are also exhibition announcements and catalogs of Smithson's group and solo shows from 1959 to 1985.
The scrapbook contains clippings of Smithson's published articles from 1966 to 1973 with annotated shorthand notes.
Artwork consists of Christmas cards collaged by Smithson, and sketches by Smithson and Leo Valledor.
Photographic materials include prints and negatives of Smithson with friends, promotional Hollywood movie stills, and original prints and copyprints of other artists' artwork.
Artifacts consist of a paper bag silkscreened with a Campbell's soup can (Warhol), promotional buttons (N.E. Thing Co.), various organic materials, and two art kits.
Nancy Holt's papers consist of correspondence, a grant application, printed materials, and project files and audio visual material related to her motion picture film Pine Barrens (1975) and her seminal environmental work of art Sun Tunnels (1975).
The collection is arranged as 13 series:
Series 1: Biographical Materials, 1905-1974 (Box 1; 14 folders)
Series 2: Correspondence, 1959-1987 (Boxes 1-2, OV 21; 1.7 linear feet)
Series 3: Interview Transcripts, 1966-1973 (Box 2; 11 folders)
Series 4: Writings, 1959-1975 (Boxes 2-3; 1.1 linear feet)
Series 5: Project Files, circa 1950s-1982 (Boxes 4-5, Boxes 17-18, OV 20, OV 22-26, OV 36, RD 28-30, RD 32-35; 6.5 linear feet)
Series 6: Personal Business Records, circa 1967-1970s (Box 5; 4 folders)
Series 7: Financial Records, 1962-1972 (Box 6; 1 linear foot)
Series 8: Printed Material, 1955-1985 (Boxes 7-11, Box 18, RD 31; 5.6 linear feet)
Series 9: Scrapbook, 1966-1973 (Box 11, Box 16; 0.3 linear feet)
Series 10: Artwork, circa 1950s-1970s (Box 11; 4 folders)
Series 11: Photographs, circa 1950s-1970s (Box 11, Box 18; 5 folders)
Series 12: Artifacts, circa 1950s-1970s (Box 11, Box 14, OV 19; 0.5 linear feet)
Series 13: Nancy Holt Papers, circa 1960s-1980s (Box 12-13, 15, OV 27, FC 37-38; 1.9 linear feet)
Robert Smithson (1938-1973) was the pioneer of land and earthworks art. He was also a noted sculptor, painter, writer, and lecturer working primarily in New York City. Smithson's wife, Nancy Holt (1938-) was a noted sculptor and filmmaker and also worked as an earthworks artist.
Born in Passaic, New Jersey, Smithson expressed an early interest in art, enrolling in classes at the Brooklyn Museum School and the Art Student's League in New York while still attending high school. Smithson's early works were primarily paintings, drawings, and collages. In 1959, he exhibited his first solo show of paintings at the Artists' Gallery in New York and had his first solo international show in Rome with the Galleria George Lester in 1961.
During the early to mid-1960s, Smithson was perhaps better known as a writer and art critic, writing numerous essays and reviews for Arts Magazine and Artforum. He became affiliated with artists who were identified with the minimalist movement, such as Carl Andre, Donald Judd, Nancy Holt, Sol LeWitt, Robert Morris and others. In 1963, Smithson married sculptor and filmmaker Nancy Holt and a year later started to create his first sculptural works. In 1966, Smithson joined the Dwan Gallery, whose owner Virginia Dwan was an enthusiastic supporter of his work.
Smithson's interest in land art began in the late 1960s while exploring industrial and quarry sites and observing the movement of earth and rocks. This resulted in a series of sculptures called "non-sites" consisting of earth and rocks collected from a specific site and installed in gallery space, often combined with photographs, maps, mirrors, or found materials. In September 1968, Smithson published the essay "A Sedimentation of the Mind: Earth Projects" in Artforum that promoted the work of the first wave of land art artists. Soon thereafter, he began creating his own large scale land art and earthworks.
From 1967 to 1973, Smithson's productivity was constant as he wrote, lectured, and participated in several solo and group shows a year, both at home and abroad. He explored narrative art as essay in "The Monuments of Passaic" and fully committed to his idea of visiting sites and using them as the basis for creating non-sites, Non-Site, Pine Barrens, (1968); incorporated and documented the use of mirrors at sites in Mirror Displacement, Cayuga Salt Mine Project (1968-1969); and created his first site-specific works through liquid pours of mud, asphalt, and concrete, including Asphalt Rundown (1969). In 1969, he also completed his first earth pour at Kent State University with his project Partially Buried Woodshed. Later that year, he created the sculptural artwork for which he is best known, Spiral Jetty (1969) on the Great Salt Lake in Utah. This was the first of his pieces to require the acquisition of land rights and earthmoving equipment, and would be followed two years later by Broken Circle and Spiral Hill in 1971.
On July 20, 1973, while surveying sites in Texas for the proposed Amarillo Ramp, Smithson died in a plane crash at the age of 35. Despite his early death, Smithson's writings and artwork had a major impact on many contemporary artists.
Nancy Holt began her career as a photographer and video artist. Today, Holt is most widely known for her large-scale environmental works, Sun Tunnels and Dark Star Park. Holt has also made a number of films and videos since the late 1960s, including Mono Lake (1968), East Coast, West Coast (1969), and Swamp (1971) in collaboration with her late husband Robert Smithson. Points of View: Clocktower (1974) features conversations between Lucy Lippard and Richard Serra, Liza Bear and Klaus Kertess, Carl Andre and Ruth Kligman and Bruce Brice and Tina Girouard. In 1978, she produced a film about her seminal work Sun Tunnels.
The Archives also holds several collections related to Robert Smithson and Nancy Holt, including an oral history interview with Robert Smithson conducted by Paul Cummings in 1972; an interview with Robert Smithson conducted by Tony Robbin in 1968; Robert Smithson letters to George B. Lester, 1960-1963; and oral history interviews with Nancy Holt conducted by Scott Gutterman in 1992 and Joyce Pomeroy Schwartz in 1993.
Non-archival library books, periodicals, and phonographs from Robert Smithson's personal library are currently stored offsite.
The papers of Robert Smithson and Nancy Holt were donated by Nancy Holt in several accretions between 1986 and 2011.
Use of original papers requires an appointment. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
The Robert Smithson and Nancy Holt papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
The Leo Castelli Gallery records measure 215.9 linear feet and 0.001 GB and date from circa 1880-2000, with the bulk of the materials dating from the gallery's founding in 1957 through Leo Castelli's death in 1999. The major influence of dealer Leo Castelli and his gallery on the development of mid-to-late twentieth century modern art in America is well-documented through business and scattered personal correspondence, administrative files, exhibition files, extensive artists' files and printed materials, posters, awards and recognitions, photographs, and sound and video recordings. Also included are records for the subsidiary firms of Castelli Graphics and Castelli/Sonnabend Tapes and Films.
Scope and Content Note:
The Leo Castelli Gallery records measure 215.9 linear feet and 0.001 GB and date from circa 1880-2000, with the bulk of the materials dating from the gallery's founding in 1957 through Leo Castelli's death in 1999. The major influence of dealer Leo Castelli and his gallery on the development of mid-to-late twentieth century modern art in America is well-documented through business and scattered personal correspondence, administrative files, exhibition files, extensive artists' files and printed materials, posters, awards and recognitions, photographs, and audio and video recordings. Also included are records for the subsidiary firms of Castelli Graphics and Castelli/Sonnabend Tapes and Films.
The records document the gallery's daily business operations, exhibitions, spaces/buildings, collaborations and joint ventures with other galleries and museums, and its relationship with many artists, dealers, and clients. Artists particularly well-represented throughout the collection include Hanne Darboven, Dan Flavin, Jasper Johns, Donald Judd, Roy Lichtenstein, Robert Morris, Bruce Nauman, Claes Oldenburg, Robert Rauschenberg, James Rosenquist, Richard Serra, Frank Stella, Andy Warhol, and Lawrence Weiner.
Records pre-dating the gallery's establishment in 1957 are primarily newspaper and magazine clippings related to artists, personal photographs and photographs of works of art, and scattered personal business records of Leo Castelli.
General Correspondence is extensive at circa 25 linear feet and consists primarily of the gallery's and Leo Castelli's named and subject correspondence files concerning the gallery's daily operations, exhibitions, artwork installation and fabrication, appraisals, inquiries, loans, sales, consignments, personal and business relationships with artists, and other topics. The general correspondence is arranged either by name of correspondent or topic, and is with museums and galleries, collectors, business associates, artists, employees, and friends. Notes, scattered photographs and slides, and printed materials are often found as enclosures. Leo Castelli's personal correspondence is also found here and consists primarily of solicitations, requests for advice, notes of thanks, congratulations, and invitations.
Letters written by artists in the gallery's stable are somewhat limited. There are scattered letters from artists Christo, Chryssa, Nassos Daphnis, Hanne Darboven, Marisol, Dan Flavin, Jasper Johns, Frederick Kiesler, Robert Morris, Hans Namuth, Bruce Nauman, Nam June Paik, Ray Parker, James Rosenquist, Edward Ruscha, Salvatore Scarpitta, Frank Stella, Cy Twombly, and Jack Tworkov. There are also letters about artists in this series filed under the artists' name.
Collectors and dealers represented within the correspondence include the De Menil family, Mrs. Henry Epstein, Ben Heller, Giuseppe Panza, Alan Power, John and Kimiko Powers, Robert and Carolyn Rowan, Robert and Ethel Scull, and Burton and Emily Tremaine. Museums and galleries for which there is considerable correspondence includes the Dwan Gallery, Ferus Gallery, the Jewish Museum, Museum of Modern Art, Sidney Janis Gallery, Stedelijk Museum, Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Ileana Sonnabend Galerie.
The materials arranged in General Correspondence were originally marked by the gallery as "correspondence" files upon accessioning, and, are thus arranged into their own series. However, in some cases, there appears to be little difference between the General Correspondence and the Administrative Files. Thus, researchers are encouraged to reference both series.
Administrative Files document a wide variety of the gallery's activities and business. Essentially, these are files that were arranged by the gallery according to subject or topic and cover almost all activities except specific exhibitions. These files include records and correspondence about buildings and space, advertising, appraisals, auctions, consignments, loans, miscellaneous business correspondence, index cards, business arrangements with artists, information about artists, interviews with artists (transcripts), history of the gallery, mailings, photograph requests, shipping, and other topics. Few items are in digital format. There are staff notebooks and files and Leo Castelli's notebooks and notes from the late 1950s through the early 1990s. Extensive outgoing chronological correspondence filed in this series dates from 1964-1977. Also found are transcripts of interviews with Leo Castelli, biographical material, some of it in digital format, and scattered photographs.
Researchers should note that the Administrative Files often overlap and complement the General Correspondence. However, they focus slightly more distinctly on gallery business activities and are arranged mostly by subject or topic, except for the chronological business correspondence. Researchers are encouraged to reference both series. For example, correspondence with and about Jasper Johns may be found in both series, but the administrative files most likely focus on a specific loan, consignment, or business activity or transaction.
Exhibition files provide a thorough history of the gallery's exhibitions, as well as the fabrication and installation of artwork for exhibitions. These files include correspondence, exhibition catalogs, guest books, lists of exhibitions by artist and by year, press releases, sketches and notes, and scattered financial records. Photographs document over 650 exhibitions at Leo Castelli Gallery, including The Ninth Street Show organized by Castelli in 1951, and over 200 exhibitions at other galleries.
Extensive artists' files comprise approximately 40% of the records and are a rich resource of printed and compiled information about the careers of over 120 artists and their relationship with Leo Castelli and the gallery. There are exhibition announcements and catalogs, flyers, invitations, magazine articles and clippings, newspaper clippings, posters, press releases, photographs, and a handful of books. Nearly half of the series is comprised of black and white photographs of artwork, presumably handled by the Leo Castelli Gallery.
Additional printed materials include exhibition announcements, flyers, invitations, magazine articles and clippings, newspaper clippings, press releases, and exhibition posters. Exhibition catalogs are filed with the exhibitions files. The general archives files provide a chronological history of the gallery and its exhibitions. There are also files concerning Leo Castelli and numerous art-related topics. Exhibition posters are found here as well.
Artwork is limited and includes a few works of art and signed posters. Artists represented here include photographer Gianfranco Gorgoni, Robert Morris, Bruce Nauman, Richard Serra and Andy Warhol, as well as others.
The records of the subsidiary Castelli Graphics New York consist of correspondence and administrative files relating to general operations and the sale and loan of prints. Also found are exhibition files, sales records, and scattered financial records. The series provides a wealth of information about Castelli Graphics collaborations with Multiples Inc. in the 1970s.
Also found in the collection are records of Castelli/Sonnabend Tapes and Films, a joint business venture between Leo Castelli Gallery and Sonnabend Gallery from 1974-1985. Records include correspondence, administrative files, exhibition files, artists' files, printed materials, sales and rental records, photographs, and financial records.
The importance and stature of Leo Castelli and the Leo Castelli Gallery to the arts community in New York City and beyond is documented by numerous awards and recognitions, such as framed and unframed certificates, plaques, statues, medals, and scattered photographs.
Nearly seven linear feet of photographs include professional black and white original prints, scattered color photographs, color transparencies, slides and negatives, and disassembled photo albums. The photographs primarily depict social and art events and functions; family and friends of Leo Castelli; and portraits of Leo Castelli and artists and of Leo Castelli with artists, including Richard Artschwager, Jasper Johns, Roy Lichtenstein, Bruce Nauman, Robert Rauschenberg, James Rosenquist, Salvatore Scarpitta, Richard Serra, Frank Stella, and Andy Warhol. Photographs of exhibitions and exhibition installations are filed with the exhibition files.
Sound and video recordings include sound and video art, performances, interviews with artists and Leo Castelli, recordings from and of exhibitions, and television publicity recorded on sound cassettes, phonograph records (vinyl and lacquer), videocassettes (U-matic, VHS, Betamax), and videocartridges. Artists represented include Vito Acconci, Robert Barry, Barbara Bloom, Hannah Collins, Hanne Darboven, Dan Flavin, Laura Grisi, Jasper Johns, Jeff Koons, Roy Lichtenstein, Bruce Nauman, Claes Oldenburg, Robert Rauschenberg, James Rosenquist, Ed Ruscha, Salvatore Scarpitta, Doug and Mike Starn, and Lawrence Weiner, among others.
See Index for list of Exhibitions at the Leo Castelli Gallery and Castelli Graphics
The collection is arranged as 11 series:
Series 1: Correspondence, 1948-1999, bulk 1957-1997 (24.4 linear feet; Boxes 1-23, 191, OVs 233-236)
Series 2: Administrative Files, 1941-1999, bulk 1970s-1990s (17.3 linear feet; Boxes 24-39, 192-193, OVs 237-238, 0.001 GB; ER01-ER02)
Series 3: Exhibition Files, 1951-1999, bulk 1957-1998 (18.7 linear feet; Boxes 40-56, 192, 194-196, 308-309, OVs 239-241, 280)
Series 4: Artists Files, 1913-1999, bulk 1960s-1990s (80.8 linear feet; Boxes 57-133, 197-208, OVs 242-243)
Series 5: Printed Materials, 1949-1998 (23.5 linear feet; Boxes 134-153, 209-211, OVs 244-274, 276, 300, RDs 301-306)
Series 6: Artwork, circa 1960s-1990s (1.8 linear feet; Boxes 153, 212-213, OVs 275, 277-278, RD 307)
Series 7: Castelli Graphics, circa 1950-1999, bulk mid 1970s-early 1990s (16 linear feet; Boxes 154-169)
Series 8: Castelli/Sonnabend Tapes + Films, 1969-1998 (5.6 linear feet; Boxes 170-174, 214, OVs 279-281)
Series 9: Awards and Recognition, 1962-1998 (6.9 linear feet; Boxes 175-176, 215-228, OVs 282)
Series 10: Photographs, circa 1880-1997, bulk 1960s-1990s (6.6 linear feet; Boxes 177-180, 229-231, OVs 283-299)
Series 11: Sound and Video Recordings, 1959-2000 (9.7 linear feet; Boxes 181-190, 232)
Leo Castelli (1907-1999) was one of America's most noted contemporary art dealers and opened the Leo Castelli Gallery in New York City in 1957. The gallery showcased cutting edge American contemporary art, including Surrealism, Abstract Expressionism, Neo-Dada, Pop Art, Op Art, Color Field painting, Hard-edge painting, Lyrical Abstraction, Minimal Art, Conceptual Art, and Neo-expressionism, among other movements.
Leo Castelli was born as Leo Krauss on September 4, 1907 in Trieste, of Italian and Austro-Hungarian Jewish origin. He married art dealer Ileana Sonnabend in 1932 and the couple lived in Paris up until World War II. They had a daughter, Nina Castelli Sundell. In Paris, Castelli opened his first gallery in 1939. At that time, he was interested in the European Surrealists.
For years after Castelli moved to New York, he worked in his father-in-law's garment business. However, he organized his first American exhibition in 1951, the famous Ninth Street Show of 1951, a seminal event of Abstract Expressionism.
In 1957, he opened the Leo Castelli Gallery in his townhome on E. 77th Street between Madison and Fifth Avenues in New York City. Castelli initially featured European Surrealism, but also curated exhibitions of American Abstract painters, including Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, Cy Twombly, Friedel Dzubas, and Norman Bluhm.
In 1958, Castelli discovered Pop artists Robert Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns and forged a life-long nurturing relationship with both artists. The gallery then began focusing more on Pop Art, Minimalism and Conceptual Art. Beginning in the early 1960s, Castelli's stable included Richard Artschwager, Lee Bontecou, Chryssa, John Chamberlain, Ronald Davis, Dan Flavin, Donald Judd, Ellsworth Kelly, Joseph Kosuth, Roy Lichtenstein, Robert Morris, Bruce Nauman, Larry Poons, James Rosenquist, Ed Ruscha, Salvatore Scarpitta, Richard Serra, Frank Stella, Andy Warhol, and Lawrence Weiner.
Leo and Ileana divorced in 1959, and Ileana returned to Europe. She later moved back to New York and opened a gallery close to Castelli's. The two remained close and together they established the joint venture of Castelli-Sonnabend Films and Tapes to accommodate artists interested in new media.
In the 1970s Leo Castelli opened a downtown SoHo branch of the Leo Castelli Gallery at 420 West Broadway. In the 1980s he opened a second larger downtown exhibition space on Greene Street also in SoHo.
Leo Castelli's second wife was Antoinette Castelli, with whom he also opened Castelli Graphics, an art gallery devoted to prints and photographs, mostly those by Castelli artists. The couple also had a son together, Jean-Christophe Castelli. In 1995 Leo Castelli married Italian art historian Barbara Bertozzi Castelli. She directs the Leo Castelli Gallery today, showing many of the same artists of the gallery's past.
Leo Castelli's unparalleled eye for quality, combined with his extraordinary skill for nurturing and promoting new art and artists, secured his position as one of the most respected and influential advocates of contemporary art for nearly five decades.
List of Exhibitions:
Below is a chronological listing of over 850 exhibitions and events held at the Leo Castelli Gallery from 1957 to 1999; included are exhibitions at 4 E 77 St (1957-1989), 65 Thompson (1989-1994), 108th St Warehouse (1968-1970), 142 Greene St (1980-1988), 420 W Broadway (1971-1999), and 578 Broadway (1988-1997). Castelli Graphics exhibitions from 1969-1996 and Castelli/Sonnabend Tapes and Films exhibitions from 1974-1984 are also included and are noted when known.
Note that this list is not comprehensive. In particular, Castelli Graphics exhibitions from the 1980s and early 1990s are incomplete. Sources used to compile this index include exhibition schedules and lists, installation photographs, announcements, clippings, and other printed materials from the Leo Castelli Gallery records, and the Leo Castelli Gallery website (www.castelligallery.com).
Exhibitions are listed in chronological order by title, if known, and gallery address.
1957 SeasonFeb. -- First Exhibition: de Kooning, Delaunay, Dubuffet, Giacometti, Hartley, Leger, Mondrian, Picabia, Pollock, David Smith, van Doesburg; 4 E 77 St
Mar. 4-23, 1957 -- Jon Schueler; 4 E 77 St
Mar. 25 - Apr. 13, 1957 -- Viseux; 4 E 77 St
Apr. 15 - May 4, 1957 -- Paul Brach; 4 E 77 St
May 6-25, 1957 -- New Work: Bluhm, Budd, Dzubas, Johns, Leslie, Louis, Marisol, Ortman, Rauschenberg, Savelli; 4 E 77 St
1957-1958 SeasonOct. 1-26, 1957 -- Norman Bluhm; 4 E 77 St
Oct. 28 - Nov. 16, 1957 -- Horia Damian; 4 E 77 St
Nov. 18 - Dec. 14, 1957 -- Marisol; 4 E 77 St
Dec. 17, 1957 - Jan. 18, 1958 -- Collector's Annual; 4 E 77 St
Jan. 20 - Feb. 8, 1958 -- Jasper Johns; 4 E 77 St
Feb. 10 - Mar. 1, 1958 -- Friedel Dzubas; 4 E 77 St
Mar. 4-29, 1958 -- Robert Rauschenberg; 4 E 77 St
Apr. 1-26, 1958 -- Giuseppe Capogrossi; 4 E 77 St
Apr. 29 - May 31, 1958 -- Pioneers 1910-1950: de Kooning, Delaunay, Domela, Dubuffet, Giacometti, Hartley, Kandinsky, Leger, Miro, Picabia, Pollock, Schwitters, Smith, van Doejburg; 4 E 77 St
1958-1959 SeasonSept. 30 - Oct. 25, 1958 -- Angelo Savelli; 4 E 77 St
Oct. 28 - Nov. 22, 1958 -- Group Exhibition: Bluhm, Brach, Dzubas, Johns, Marisol, Rauschenberg, Schueler; 4 E 77 St
Nov. 25 - Dec. 20, 1958 -- Esteban Vicente, Drawings; 4 E 77 St
Jan. 6-24, 1959 -- Nassos Daphnis; 4 E 77 St
Jan. 27 - Feb. 14, 1959 -- Salvatore Scarpitta, Extramurals; 4 E 77 St
Feb. 17 - Mar. 7, 1959 -- Al Newbill; 4 E 77 St
Mar. 10-28, 1959 -- Gabriel Kohn; 4 E 77 St
Mar. 31 - Apr. 18, 1959 -- Norman Bluhm, Jean Dubuffet, and Robert Rauschenberg; 4 E 77 St
Apr. 21 - May 9, 1959 -- Jon Schueler; 4 E 77 St
May 12-30, 1959 -- Group Exhibition: Brach, Dzubas, Johns, Sander, Twombly; 4 E 77 St
1959-1960 SeasonOct. 6-17, 1959 -- Opening Exhibition of the New Gallery: Bluhm, Brach, Daphnis, Johns, Kohn, Rauschenberg, Sander, Scarpitta, Stella, Twombly; 4 E 77 St
Oct. 20 - Nov. 7, 1959 -- Work in Three Dimensions: Chamberlain, Follet, Giles, Johns, Klein, Kohn, Marisol, Nevelson, Ortman, Rauschenberg, Scarpitta; 4 E 77 St
Nov. 10-28, 1959 -- Ludwig Sander; 4 E 77 St
Dec. 1-26, 1959 -- Paul Brach; 4 E 77 St
Jan. 5-23, 1960 -- William Giles; 4 E 77 St
Jan. 26 - Feb. 13, 1960 -- Norman Bluhm; 4 E 77 St
Feb. 15 - Mar. 5, 1960 -- Jasper Johns; 4 E 77 St
Mar. 8-26, 1960 -- Nassos Daphnis; 4 E 77 St
Mar. 29 - Apr. 16, 1960 -- Robert Rauschenberg; 4 E 77 St
Apr. 19 - May 7, 1960 -- Salvatore Scarpitta; 4 E 77 St
May 10-28, 1960 -- Edward Higgins; 4 E 77 St
May 31 - June 25, 1960 -- Summary 1959-1960: Bluhm, Bontecou, Daphnis, Higgins, Johns, Kohn, Langlais, Rauschenberg, Sander, Scarpitta, Stella, Twombly, Tworkov; 4 E 77 St
1960-1961 SeasonSept. 27 - Oct. 15, 1960 -- Frank Stella; 4 E 77 St
Oct. 18 - Nov. 5, 1960 -- Cy Twombly; 4 E 77 St
Nov. 9 - Dec. 3, 1960 -- Lee Bontecou; 4 E 77 St
Dec. 6, 1960 - Jan. 7, 1961 -- Robert Rauschenberg, 34 Illustrations for Dante's Inferno; 4 E 77 St
Jan. 10-28, 1961 -- Frederick Kiesler; 4 E 77 St
Jan. 31 - Feb. 25, 1961 -- Jasper Johns, Drawings and Sculpture; 4 E 77 St
Feb. 28 - Mar. 18, 1961 -- Jack Tworkov; 4 E 77 St
Mar. 21 - Apr. 8, 1961 -- Bernard Langlais; 4 E 77 St
Apr. 11-29, 1961 -- Yves Klein, Le Monochrome; 4 E 77 St
May 2-20, 1961 -- Ludwig Sander; 4 E 77 St
May 23 - June , 1961 -- Sculpture and Relief: Bontecou, Chamberlain, Higgins, Scarpitta; 4 E 77 St
1961-1962 SeasonSept. 22 - Oct. 14, 1961 -- An Exhibition in Progress: Bontecou, Chamberlain, Daphnis, Higgins, Johns, Langlais, Moskowitz, Rauschenberg, Scarpitta, Stella, Twombly, Tworkov; 4 E 77 St
Oct. 17 - Nov. 4, 1961 -- Nassos Daphnis; 4 E 77 St
Nov. 7 - Dec. 5, 1961 -- Robert Rauschenberg; 4 E 77 St
Dec. 8, 1961 - Jan. 10, 1962 -- Group Exhibition: Bontecou, Johns, Langlais, [Lichtenstein], Scarpitta, Tworkov; 4 E 77 St
Jan. 13 - Feb. 6, 1962 -- John Chamberlain; 4 E 77 St
Feb. 10 - Mar. 3, 1962 -- Roy Lichtenstein; 4 E 77 St
Mar. 10 - Apr. 5, 1962 -- Robert Moskowitz; 4 E 77 St
Apr. 7-21, 1962 -- Group Exhibition: Bontecou, Chamberlain, Daphnis, Higgins, Rauschenberg, Scarpitta, Stella; 4 E 77 St
Apr. 28 - May 19, 1962 -- Frank Stella; 4 E 77 St
May 26 - June 30, 1962 -- Drawings: Bontecou, Johns, Lichtenstein, Moskowitz, Rauschenberg, Stella, Tworkov; 4 E 77 St
1962-1963 SeasonSept. 22 - Oct. 13, 1962 -- Group Exhibition: Chamberlain, Higgins, Johns, Klapheck, Rauschenberg, Scarpitta, Stella, Tinguely, Tworkov; 4 E 77 St
Oct. 16 - Nov. 7, 1962 -- John Chamberlain and Frank Stella; 4 E 77 St
Nov. 10 - Dec. 6, 1962 -- Lee Bontecou; 4 E 77 St
Dec. 8, 1962 - Jan. 9, 1963 -- Gerald van de Wiele; 4 E 77 St
Jan. 12 - Feb. 7, 1963 -- Jasper Johns; 4 E 77 St
Feb. 9 - Mar. 7, 1963 -- Jack Tworkov; 4 E 77 St
Mar. 9-30, 1963 -- Nassos Daphnis; 4 E 77 St
Apr. 2-25, 1963 -- Group Exhibition: Chamberlain, Higgins, Kiesler, Lichtenstein, Moskowitz, Rauschenberg, Stella, Twombly; 4 E 77 St
Apr. 27 - May 16, 1963 -- Salvatore Scarpitta; 4 E 77 St
May 20 - June 30, 1963 -- Group Drawing Exhibition: Bontecou, Daphnis, Johns, Lichtenstein, Moskowitz, Rauschenberg, Stella, Tworkov, van de Wiele; 4 E 77 St
1963-1964 SeasonSept. 28 - Oct. 24, 1963 -- Roy Lichtenstein; 4 E 77 St
Oct. 26 - Nov. 21, 1963 -- Robert Rauschenberg; 4 E 77 St
Nov. 23, 1963 - Jan. 2, 1964 -- Edward Higgins; 4 E 77 St
Jan. 4 - Feb. 6, 1964 -- Frank Stella; 4 E 77 St
Feb. 8 - Mar. 12, 1964 -- Group Exhibition: Chamberlain, Johns, Lichtenstein, Rauschenberg, Stella; 4 E 77 St
Mar. 14 - Apr. 9, 1964 -- Cy Twombly; 4 E 77 St
Apr. 11-30, 1964 -- John Chamberlain; 4 E 77 St
May 2 - June 3, 1964 -- Introducing Artschwager, Christo, Hay, Watts; 4 E 77 St
June 6-30, 1964 -- Group Exhibition: Chamberlain, Lichtenstein, Rauschenberg, Scarpitta, Stella, Twombly, Tworkov; 4 E 77 St
1964-1965 SeasonSept. 26 - Oct. 22, 1964 -- Group Exhibition: Artschwager, Lichtenstein, Rosenquist, Stella, Warhol; 4 E 77 St
Oct. 24 - Nov. 19, 1964 -- Roy Lichtenstein, Landscapes; 4 E 77 St
Nov. 21 - Dec. 28, 1964 -- Andy Warhol, Flower Paintings; 4 E 77 St
Jan. 9-27, 1965 -- John Chamberlain, Paintings; 4 E 77 St
Jan. 30 - Feb. 24, 1965 -- Richard Artschwager; 4 E 77 St
Feb. 27 - Mar. 24, 1965 -- Nassos Daphnis; 4 E 77 St
Mar. 27 - Apr. 14, 1965 -- Salvatore Scarpitta, Racing Cars; 4 E 77 St
Apr. 17 - May 13, 1965 -- James Rosenquist, F-111; 4 E 77 St
May 15 - June 9, 1965 -- Robert Rauschenberg, Oracle; 4 E 77 St
1965-1966 SeasonOct. 2-21, 1965 -- Group Exhibition: [Chamberlain], Johns, Lichtenstein, Poons, Rauschenberg, Stella, [Warhol]; 4 E 77 St
Oct. 23 - Nov. 17, 1965 -- Robert Bart; 4 E 77 St
Nov. 20 - Dec. 11, 1965 -- Roy Lichtenstein, Brushstrokes and Ceramics; 4 E 77 St
Dec. 14, 1965 - Jan. 5, 1966 -- Benefit Drawing Exhibition for the Foundation for the Contemporary Performance Arts; 4 E 77 St
Dec. 14, 1965 - Jan. 5, 1966 -- Group Exhibition; 4 E 77 St
Jan. 8 - Feb. 2, 1966 -- Jasper Johns; 4 E 77 St
Feb. 5 - Mar. 2, 1966 -- Donald Judd; 4 E 77 St
Feb. 12 - Mar. 2, 1966 -- Cy Twombly, Drawings; 4 E 77 St
Mar. 5 - Apr. 2, 1966 -- Frank Stella; 4 E 77 St
Apr. 6-27, 1966 -- Andy Warhol, Wallpaper and Clouds; 4 E 77 St
Apr. 30 - May 25, 1966 -- James Rosenquist; 4 E 77 St
May 28 - June 13, 1966 -- Christo, Storefront; 4 E 77 St
June 14-30, 1966 -- Group Exhibition: Bontecou, Johns, Judd, Lichtenstein, Poons, Rauschenberg, Rosenquist, Stella, Warhol; 4 E 77 St
1966-1967 SeasonOct. 8 - Nov. 8, 1966 -- Lee Bontecou; 4 E 77 St
Nov. 12 - Dec. 3, 1966 -- Edward Higgins; 4 E 77 St
Dec. 6-10, 1966 -- Benefit Group Exhibition for Experiments in Art and Technology, Inc.; 4 E 77 St
Dec. 7, 1966 - Jan. 5, 1967 -- Stanley Landsman; 4 E 77 St
Dec. 14, 1966 - Jan. 5, 1967 -- Group Exhibition: Artschwager, Lichtenstein, Rosenquist, Warhol; 4 E 77 St
Apr. 20 - May 18, 1996 -- James Rosenquist, Horizon Home Sweet Home; 420 W Broadway
Apr. 20 - May 24, 1996 -- Roy Lichtenstein, Eight New Prints; 578 Broadway
May 28 - July 26, 1996 -- Ralph Gibson, Infanta; 420 W Broadway
May 28 - July 26, 1996 -- Group Drawing Exhibition, Works on Paper: Chryssa, Daphnis, Darboven, Johns, Lichtenstein, Morris, Nauman, Rauschenberg, Ruscha, Serra, Stella, Sonnier, Therrien, Weiner; 420 W Broadway
June 1 - July 26, 1996 -- Summer Group Show: Johns, Kosuth, Lichtenstein, Ruscha, Stella, Therrien; 578 Broadway
1996-1997 SeasonSept. 14 - Oct. 12, 1996 -- Gianfranco Gorgoni, 25 Years of Artists Portraits; 578 Broadway
Feb. 15 - Mar. 15, 1997 -- Lawrence Weiner, Then Now + Then; 420 W Broadway
Mar. 1-22, 1997 -- Dan Flavin; 578 Broadway
Mar. 22 - Apr. 26, 1997 -- Keith Sonnier, Alternating Currents; 420 W Broadway
Mar. 29 - Apr. 5, 1997 -- The Printmaking Workshop Benefit Exhibition and Auction; 420 W Broadway
Apr. 17 - May 17, 1997 -- Columbia University MFA Exhibition; 420 W Broadway
May 3 - June 7, 1997 -- Edward Ruscha, Cityscapes and "O" Books; 420 W Broadway
July - Sept., 1997 -- Summer Group Show: Kosuth, Morris, Serra; 420 W Broadway
1997-1998 SeasonSept. 27 - Oct. 18, 1997 -- Joseph Kosuth; 420 W Broadway
Oct. 25 - Nov. 15, 1997 -- 40 Years of Exploration and Innovation Part 1: Bontecou, Chryssa, Cornell, Johns, Lichtenstein, Oldenburg, Rauschenberg, Rosenquist, Ruscha, Twombly, Warhol; 420 W Broadway
Nov. 22 - Dec. 13, 1997 -- 40 Years of Exploration and Innovation Part 2: Daphnis, Flavin, Judd, Kelly, Morris, Serra, Stella, Therrien, Waldman; 420 W Broadway
Jan. 10-31, 1998 -- 40 Years of Exploration and Innovation Part 3: Barry, Darboven, Dibbets, Grisi, Huebler, Kosuth, Nauman, Scarpitta, Sonnier, Starn Twins, Weiner; 420 W Broadway
Feb. 7 - Mar. 14, 1998 -- Dan Flavin, Some Drawings and Installations of Fluorescent Light; 420 W Broadway
Mar. 28 - Apr. 25, 1998 -- Hannah Collins, True Stories; 420 W Broadway
May 2 - June 6, 1998 -- Mike and Doug Starn, Black Hole Sun Burned; 420 W Broadway
June 24 - Aug. 29, 1998 -- Summer Show; 420 W Broadway
1998-1999 SeasonSept. 26 - Oct. 31, 1998 -- Robert Morris, The Rationed Years; 420 W Broadway
Nov. - Dec., 1998 -- Joseph Kosuth, Richard Serra, Keith Sonnier; 420 W Broadway
Jan. - Feb. 1999 -- Robert Rauschenberg, Arcadian Survey; 420 W Broadway
Available in the Archives of America Art are three oral history interviews with Leo Castelli. Paul Cummings interviewed Castelli between May 14, 1969 and June 8, 1973; Barbara Rose in July, 1969; and Andrew Decker on May 22, 1997.
The Archives of American Art also holds items lent for microfilming (reel N68) including printed material. Lent material was returned to the lender and is not described in the collection container inventory.
Leo Castelli loaned printed material for microfilming in 1968. Leo Castelli's wife, Barbara Bortuzzo Castelli, and his children, Nina Castelli Sundell and Jean-Christophe Castelli, donated the Leo Castelli Gallery records to the Archives of American Art in 2007.
Use of original records requires an appointment.
The Leo Castelli Gallery records are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
The papers of New York editor and art critic Thomas Hess measure 10.0 linear feet and date from 1939 to 1978. The collection includes biographical materials, correspondence, extensive writings and notes, artists and subject files that also include recorded conversations with artists and others, printed materials, photographic materials, and artwork.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of New York editor and art critic Thomas Hess measure 10.0 linear feet and date from 1939 to 1978. The collection includes biographical materials, correspondence, extensive writings and notes, artists and subject files that also include recorded conversations with artists and others, printed materials, photographic materials, and artwork.
Biographical material includes a certificate, architectural plans, investment information, invoices, publisher and loan agreements, will for Paul Stamm, and resumes. Correspondence is with members of Hess' family including his wife and children, Philip Guston, Meyer Schapiro, David Smith, James Schuyler, Forrest Bess, Elaine de Kooning, Barnett Newman, Larry Rivers, Clyfford Still, Ad Reinhardt, and others.
Writings and notes consist of manuscripts and drafts by Hess for Art News, Le Monde, Vogue, New York magazine, and other publications; Hess' senior essay and class notes; notes on Ingres, Italian artists, and travels abroad; notebooks on art and literature; and scattered writings by others.
Artists and subject files contain primarily photographs of artwork, artists, and colleaguesare mostly photographs of artwork, artists, and colleagues. Some of the files also contain printed materials, writings, notes, and other documentation. The file on Willem de Kooning includes a sound recording of a conversation between Hess, de Kooning, and Harold Rosenberg. There are also significant files on Elaine de Kooning, Helen Frankenthaler, Adolph Gottlieb, Franz Kline, Carl Milles, Barnett Newman, Isamu Noguchi, Ad Reinhardt, Mark Rothko and the Mark Rothko Foundation Inc.
Printed materials include brochures and flyers, clippings, magazines and newspapers, press releases, travel memorabilia, and a printed scarf. Photographs are of of Hess, his wife Audrey, other family members, works of art, travel, Larry Rivers and Ad Reinhardt, and other artists and colleagues. Artwork includes drawings, paintings, collages, cartoons, and holiday cards made by Hess and his children, along with artwork by others including Audrey and Lawrence Campbell, Ad Reinhardt, and unidentified artists.
The collection is arranged as 7 series.
Series 1: Biographical Materials, 1945-1977 (0.3 linear feet; Box 1, OV 15)
Series 2: Correspondence, circa 1945-1978 (1.0 linear feet; Box 1-2, OV 11)
Series 3: Writings and Notes, circa 1940-1978 (2.5 linear feet; Box 2-5, OV 12)
Series 4: Artists and Subject Files, circa 1946-1978 (4.5 linear feet; Box 5-9, OVs 13, 15-16)
Series 5: Printed Materials, 1943-1978 (0.5 linear feet; Box 9, OV 11)
Series 6: Photographic Materials, 1949-circa 1960s (0.8 linear feet; Box 9-10, OV14)
Series 7: Artwork, 1939-1978 (0.4 linear feet; Box 10, OV 11)
Biographical / Historical:
Thomas B. Hess (1920-1978) was an editor, art critic and curator who worked in New York City. He was on the staff at Art News for 26 years (1946-72). Starting as an editorial associate, he was named managing editor in 1948, then executive editor in 1954; he assumed the top editorial post in 1965 upon the death of long-time editor Alfred Frankfurter. In his critical writing from the late 1940s on, he was an influential supporter of the Abstract Expressionists. He wrote widely on other topics as well. In 1972 he left Art News after an ownership change. He then became the art critic for New York magazine (1972-78), a large-circulation weekly reaching a much larger public. (He was also, in the late '60s, a correspondent for the French daily newspaper Le Monde.)
Over the years he undertook several major curatorial projects including traveling retrospectives for Willem de Kooning (1968-69) and Barnett Newman (1971), which he organized for the Museum of Modern Art. His "New York School Painting and Sculpture" appeared at the New York State Museum in Albany in 1977. Both MoMA exhibitions were accompanied by comprehensive monograph/catalogues: Willem de Kooning (1968) and Barnett Newman (1971). Hess's other books include Abstract Painting: Background and American Phase (1951, Viking); Willem de Kooning (1959, Braziller); De Kooning, Recent Paintings (1967, Walker & Co.); Barnett Newman (1969, Walker & Co.); De Kooning: Drawings (1972, New York Graphic); and The Art Comics and Satires of Ad Reinhardt (1975, De Luca Editore, Rome).
Hess became consultative chairman of the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Department of 20th-Century Art a few months before his death from a heart attack in July 1978, age 57. Already under way were a Clyfford Still retrospective and a smaller show of recent paintings and sculptures by Ellsworth Kelly. Both exhibitions, completed by Philippe de Montebello (the Met's then new director) and Lowery S. Sims (the Met's then acting 20th-century curator) respectively, took place the year after Hess's death.
Thomas Hess was born in Rye, New York, to Gabriel Lorie Hess, a lawyer, and Helen Baer. He attended school in the United States and Switzerland. He continued his education at Yale University majoring in French 17th-century art history and literature. After graduating in 1942, Hess worked for a short period at the Museum of Modern Art under Alfred H. Barr and Dorothy Miller, before entering World War II as a pilot. In 1944 he married Audrey Stern with whom he had three children, William, Philip, and Anne Helen.
Materials on legacy microfilm reel 5028 related to Barnett Newman are photocopies. The originals are located at the Barnett New Foundation in New York City.
The Thomas Hess papers were donated in multiple increments from 1985 to 1987 by Hess' children, Anne Helen, William, and Philip Hess, except for a file on Barnett Newman donated by Newman's widow, who presumably had borrowed it from Hess. In 2014, additional correspondence, writings, photographs, printed material, and cartoons, including some by Ad Reinhardt, were donated by Elizabeth Wolff, Hess' sister.
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Washington, D.C. Research Center.
The Thomas Hess papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Art critics -- New York (State) -- New York Search this