The dates for the Giulio V. Blanc papers range from 1920-1995. Measuring a total of eleven linear feet and 0.001 GB, the collection provides documentation of the art exhibitions Blanc curated during his career, including original writings and exhibition catalogs. The extensive artists files in the collection provide information on numerous Latin American and Caribbean artists. The collection also provides historical information on the life and culture of Cuba.
Scope and Content Note:
The Giulio V. Blanc papers measure approximately 11 linear feet and 0.001 GB and date from 1920 to 1995. Compiled by Blanc since the beginning of his curatorial, writing, and research career in the 1980s, the papers consist primarily of artist files on Cuban, Cuban-American, and Latin American artists (1920-1995 and undated). Also found is biographical information (1994-1995), interviews by Blanc (1984-1987, 1994) and miscellaneous letters from artists and friends (1983-1995 and undated).
The first series, Biographical Files, 1994-1995 includes information about Blanc's career. Series 2: Miscellaneous Letters, 1983-1995, undated, consists of letters from artists and friends on various topics. Series 3: Artist Files, 1920-1995, undated, represents the bulk of the collection (approximately 300 artists in all, 6 linear feet), and contain materials either collected by Blanc or received by Blanc from the artists themselves. These consist of biographical material about the artist, usually two or three paragraphs written by Blanc, scattered resumes and copies of fellowship applications. Also found are newspaper clippings, exhibition announcements and catalogs, and letters or correspondence between Blanc and the artists. Of special interest in this series are numerous taped interviews with celebrated Cuban artists and art historians such as José Gómez Sícre, founder and first director of the Art Museum of the Americas, Organization of American States. Gómez-Sícre describes his early career and involvement with acquisitions for the museum's permanent collection as well as his working relationship with Alfred H. Barr, first director of the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Gómez-Sícre's notable book, Pintura Cubana de Hoy, published in Havana in 1944 is included in the files.
Elena Peláez de Medero, another interviewee, discusses her sister, Cuban painter Amelia Peláez (1896-1968). Blanc interviewed Elena Peláez in Miami for his 1988 exhibition Amelia Peláez: A Retrospective. The Peláez file includes Blanc's correspondence with her as well as copies of rare 1930s and 1940s exhibition catalogs from Amelia Peláez's early career. Among the catalogs is a copy of Modern Cuban Painters from the 1944 exhibition held at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Also found are rare French, German and Spanish newspaper clippings on Peláez dating back to the 1920s. Of interest is a copy of Amado Blanco's 1937 poetry book, Poema desesperado. Published in Havana, the book is dedicated to the memory of Federico García Lorca and includes illustrations by Peláez.
Another prominent artist whom Blanc interviewed was Enrique Riverón (b. 1901) leader of the Cuban vanguardia. He was a member of El Grupo de Montparnasse, a talented group of painters and writers living in the southern district of Paris in the late 1920s, an area noted for its boisterous after-hour activities. The interview was published in the Journal of Decorative and Propaganda Arts in 1997. Also found in the papers are illustrated letters and greeting cards addressed to Blanc and his parents, Baron Lodovico Blanc and María V. Blanc.
Series 4: Exhibition Files, 1977-1995, undated, consists primarily of material Blanc compiled for exhibitions he curated. Found here are letters from museum directors, artists and colleagues, drafts and finished essays for exhibition catalogs, and printed material such as newspaper clippings of art reviews. This series also includes files on exhibitions Blanc did not curate.
Series 5: Subject Files, 1933-1995, undated, are files relating to Cuban art, culture, and society, the Cuban revolution, book projects, Biennials in Havana and São Paulo, the 1988 controversy surrounding the Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture (Miami, FL) and other topics. Found are letters, drafts of writings, notes, printed material such as newspaper clippings and magazine articles, press releases, and exhibition announcements.
Particularly extensive is the documentation about the 1980s conflict at the Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture. In April 1988, a fund-raising auction at the 24-year-old 'little Havana' institution resulted in heated disputes that escalated to violence. The works auctioned were by Cuban artists still living on the island. Many in Miami's Cuban community considered these artists to be supporters of the Communist regime and were outraged. One of the disputed works purchased the night of the auction, a drawing by Manuel Mendive, was taken across the street by its successful bidder and burned. In addition, the museum building was damaged by a pipe bomb shortly after the sale. In the National Public Radio news story (available in Blanc's papers on audio cassette) Helen Kohen, critic for the Miami Herald commented, "We're not talking about paintings. We're talking about `my brother's in jail'. That's what we're talking about." The situation intensified quickly; transcending local politics and involving the Treasury and Justice Departments, the American Civil Liberties Union, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and Sotheby's and Christie's auction houses. Ramón Cernuda, the museum vice-president who organized the auction also had his personal collection of Cuban art impounded by the FBI. A second bombing took place in 1989 to protest an exhibition of Cuban artists who came to the U. S. during the early 1980s Mariel boatlift.
The seriousness of the conflicts in the Miami museum prompted the Museum of Modern Art in New York to withdraw an offer to lend three paintings to the Cuban museum for the 1988 exhibition Amelia Peláez: A Retrospective scheduled to open later that year. Curated by Giulio Blanc, it was the first U.S. retrospective of this important Cuban artist and the exhibition helped situate her work. The Cuban Museum of Art in Daytona Beach, an institution that helped start the Miami museum, also withdrew an offer to lend "Amelias". The result was an exhibition devoid of works owned by the Museum of Modern Art, important paintings created after 1963, the year President Kennedy imposed economic sanctions on Cuba.
To publicize the Peláez exhibition and boost attendance, the museum placed a public invitation in the Spanish section of the Miami Herald. The half page ad, also found in the Blanc papers, lists more than 100 intellectuals and professionals who supported the exhibition. Blanc stated in a letter to the Miami Herald, "It is horrifying to think there are those in Miami who would burn a painting for the sake of politics. This was the same reasoning utilized by Joseph Goebbels when he made bonfires of books and paintings by anti-Nazi and `degenerate' artists and writers in 1930s Germany... One can only pity the ignorance of those who play into the hands of the Castro regime by resorting to uncivilized tactics that can only hurt the image of the Cuban-exile community and of Miami in general."
The files concerning the Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture contain exhibition announcements, copies of court orders, press releases and correspondence between Blanc and the Museum of Modern Art in New York regarding the museum and the Peláez exhibition. Also included are a great number of newspaper articles printed in two of Miami's major newspapers, the Miami Herald and El Nuevo Herald which covered the story until it was resolved in the early 1990s. Offering additional information on the controversy are a number of letters addressed to either Blanc or his parents from artists and friends expressing either discontent with the museum's state of affairs or gratitude for the Blanc's financial support during the museum's reconstruction. These provide remarkable insight into a relatively heterogeneous Cuban community.
Series 6: Sound Recordings, 1992, 1994 consists of two untranscribed audio cassette tapes. One is of the 1992 College Art Association's session: Artistic Voices of Latin America: The Aesthetics of Anti-Colonialism held in Chicago, Illinois in which Giulio V. Blanc was a panelist. The other is a rare 1994 interview conducted by Blanc with poet-priest Monseñor Angel Gaztelu, a friend of many Cuban writers and artists, and who presided over Peláez's funeral service in 1968.
The last series, Series 7: Photographs, 1981-1993, undated, includes black and whiteportraits of artists, group shots of Blanc with "Miami Generation" artists María Brito, Pablo Cano, María Martínez-Cañas, Carlos Macía, Arturo Rodríguez, and César Trasobares, and photos of other artists.
The Giulio V. Blanc papers are arranged into seven series primarily according to type of material. Within each series, materials are arranged chronologically, except for Artist Files and Subject Files which are arranged alphabetically by either name or subject.
Series 1: Biographical Files, 1994-1995, undated (box 1; 3 folders)
Series 2: Miscellaneous Letters, 1983-1995, undated (box 1; 3 folders)
Series 3: Artist Files, 1920-1995, undated (boxes 1-8, ER01; 6 linear ft., 0.001 GB)
Series 4: Exhibition Files, 1977-1995, undated (box 8; 1 linear foot)
Series 5: Subject Files, 1933-1995, undated (boxes 8-12; 2.5 linear feet)
Series 6: Untranscribed Sound Recordings, 1992-1994 (box 12; 2 folders)
Series 7: Photographs, 1981, 1993, undated (box 12; 2 folders)
Cuban born independent curator, critic, art historian and consultant Giulio V. Blanc (1955-1995) specialized in Cuban and Latin American art history and in his lifetime collected a wealth of material on the subject. Through his numerous exhibitions and keen articles appearing in national and international art journals, Blanc became a leading authority on Latin American art and successfully established himself as a link between Cuban and Cuban-American artists and US galleries and museums. The Miami Generation (1983) and Amelia Peláez: A Retrospective (1988) are two significant exhibitions Blanc curated for Miami's Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture in addition to the celebrated Wifredo Lam and His Contemporaries, 1938-1952 (1992) for New York's Studio Museum in Harlem. Giulio V. Blanc was among the key figures that catapulted Latin American art onto the mainstream in the early 1980s.
Giulio V. Blanc was born in Havana in 1955 to Baron Lodovico Blanc and María V. Blanc. The Blanc name hails from Italy and the title of Baron was awarded to Alberto Blanc, Lodovico Blanc's grandfather, while he was Secretary of State in 1873 under Victor Emmanuel II of Italy. As young advocates of Cuban culture, the Blanc's collected a number of paintings by Cuban artists but were forced to leave behind the works of Cuban masters such as Carlos Enríquez, Victor Manuel, René Portocarrero, Fidelio Ponce and others to facilitate an uncomplicated exodus from the country during the revolution. Lodovico and María were in their thirties and Giulio was five years old when the family settled in Miami.
Giulio Blanc completed his undergraduate education at Harvard and proceeded to Brown University and the Institute of Fine Arts in New York for graduate work (1979-1980). During his career, he served as an independent curator and consultant to The Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture (Miami), The Metropolitan Museum (Miami), and The Museum of Contemporary Hispanic Art (New York) among others. He also lectured on Latin American art history at the Art Museum of the Americas, OAS (Organization of American States), Washington, DC, The University of Miami, and El Museo Nacional de Arte in La Paz, Bolivia. In addition, he worked as a consultant in the Latin American Paintings Department at Sotheby's auction house in New York and served on the editorial board of the magazine Art Nexus. Blanc was pursuing a doctoral degree in art history at the City University of New York before his premature death in 1995 at the age of thirty-nine.
1955 -- Born November 1 in Havana, Cuba to Baron Lodovico and Baroness María V. Blanc, young collectors of Cuban art. The title of Baron was awarded to Alberto Blanc, Lodovico Blanc's grandfather, in 1873 while Alberto was Secretary of State under Victor Emmanuel II of Italy.
1960 -- The Blanc family migrates to the United States because of the escalating revolution. Lodovico and Maria V. Blanc are in their thirties when they flee the island. The works of Cuban painters such as Carlos Enríquez, Victor Manuel, René Portocarrero, Fidelio Ponce and others were left behind to facilitate an uncomplicated exodus.
1976 -- Giulio V. Blanc serves as research assistant for one year at the Tozzer Library, Peabody Museum, Harvard University.
1977 -- Graduates cum laude from Harvard College with a B.A. in Archeology.
1979 -- Graduates from Brown University with a M.A. in Archeology. Was a research assistant until 1980 at the Gallery of the Center for Inter-American Relations, New York city.
1980 -- Receives a certificate in Museum Studies from the Graduate School of Arts and Science, New York University. Curates Emilio Sánchez: Lithographs which opens at the Pagoda, Ransom-Everglades School, Coconut Grove, Florida. Co-curates Cuba in the Nineteenth Century for Miami's Miami-Dade Public Library.
1981 -- Joins the Latin American Paintings Department, Sotheby's Auction House, New York and serves for two years.
1982 -- Co-curates Young Hispanics, USA which opens at the Lehigh University Museum, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania and curates Ten Out of Cuba for INTAR Latin American Gallery in New York.
1983 -- Curates Cuban Fantasies at the Kouros Gallery in New York and Pablo Cano en Paris for the 4 Place de Saussaies in Paris, France. Also curates The Miami Generation: Nine Cuban-American Artists for the Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture in Miami and the Meridian House in Washington, DC.
1984 -- Serves as independent curator and consultant to Miami's Metropolitan Museum and Art Center and The Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture; The Museum of Contemporary Hispanic Art in New York and other institutions. Lectures at the Art Museum of the Americas (Organization of American States) in Washington, DC; The University of Miami; The Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture (Miami); The Center for the Fine Arts (Miami); Rockland Center for the Arts (West Nyack, NY); and the National Museum of Art, La Paz, Bolivia. Curates Young Collector's of Latin American Art which opened at Miami's Metropolitan Museum and Art Center.
1985 -- Curates Dancing Faces: An Exhibition of Mexican Masks for the Metropolitan Museum and Art Center in Miami and Nuevas Vistas: Latin American Paintings which opens at the Wistariahurst, Holyoke, Massachusetts. Curates Architecture in Cuban Painting, for the Miami Dade Public Library.
1986 -- Receives and M.A. in Art History at New York University's Institute of Fine Arts. Curates Carlos Enríquez for the Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture, Miami, Florida and Into the Mainstream: Ten Latin American Artists Working in New York for the Jersey City Museum in Jersey City, New Jersey.
1987 -- The exhibition Aurelia Muñoz: Selections, curated by Blanc, opens at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in Miami, Florida. Serves as juror for Expresiones Hispanas: Coors National Hispanic Art Exhibition, Denver, Colorado. Curates Visions of Self: The American Latin Artist for the Miami-Dade Community College gallery.
1988 -- Receives a grant from the NY State Council on the Arts for research on Cuban artist Wifredo Lam for the exhibition at the Studio Museum in Harlem, New York. Enrolls in the art history Ph.D. program at the City University Graduate Center, New York city. First bombing of the Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture in Miami takes place. Blanc's Amelia Peláez: A Retrospective successfully opens at the Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture despite much controversy.
1989 -- Curates Urgent Dream: New Work by Mario Bencomo at the Museum of Contemporary Hispanic Art (MoCHA), New York. Second bombing of the Cuban Museum of Arts and Culture, Miami FL.
1990 -- New York correspondent for Arte en Colombia, Bogota. Serves as adjunct lecturer at Queens College (CUNY) for the Fall semester. Curates the exhibition, The Post-Miami Generation for the Inter-American Gallery in Miami, Florida. Co-curates Figurative Perspectives: Six Artists of Latin American Background for the Rockland Center for the Arts, West Nyack, NY.
1991 -- Visiting scholar at University of Massachusetts at Amherst. Writes a small play, Tía Carmela: A Cuban Tragicomedy, illustrated by Cuban artist and friend Pablo Cano.
1995 -- Dies at the age of forty of AIDS related complications.
Papers of Giulio V. Blanc, 1930-1982, are also located at the University of Miami Archival Collections.
Margherite Blanc, sister of Giulio V. Blanc, donated her brother's papers in 1998 to the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. This collection, along with numerous other Latino collections, was acquired through the 1996 Latino Art Documentation Project in South Florida. Initiated to chronicle the thriving art scene so apparent in the city's galleries, museums, and private collections, the project resulted in numerous acquisitions described in the revised edition of the Papers of Latino and Latin American Artists. Both the project and the publication were made possible, in part, with funding provided by the Smithsonian Institution's Center for Latino Initiatives.
The collection is open for research. Use requires an appointment and is limited to the Washington, D.C. research facility.
New School for Social Research (New York, N.Y.) -- Faculty Search this
6.9 Linear feet
The papers of painter and teacher Julian E. (Edwin) Levi date from 1846 to 1981, and comprise 6.9 linear feet. They include biographical information and extensive correspondence with museums and galleries, as well as letters written to his family, circa 1927, while Levi was living in Paris. Also found within the papers are scattered drawings and sketches by Levi, writings and notes, financial records, two scrapbooks, printed material, miscellaneous records and photographs that document Levi's professional career and personal life.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of painter and teacher Julian E. Levi date from 1846 to 1981, and comprise 6.9 linear feet. They consist of biographical information, correspondence, artwork, writings and notes, financial records, scrapbooks, printed material, miscellaneous records and photographs that document Levi's professional career and personal life.
Biographical information includes French documents regarding his trips to Paris in 1920 and 1926-1927. Julian E. Levi's Correspondence, 1914-1981, and undated, concerns professional and personal matters and consists primarily of incoming letters from friends and colleagues, arts organizations, museums, schools, and galleries. Also found are approximately sixty letters he wrote to his family circa 1927, while living in Paris. In addition, a small number of Henderson Family letters, 1846-1886, are included with the Julian E. Levi papers; their relationship to Levi is unclear. Found within the correspondence are illustrated letters and original artwork in the form of greeting cards. Additional Artwork consists mainly of pencil drawings and sketches by Levi, including a large number of stage costume designs.
Writings by Levi consist of brief statements concerning his work and other artists, brief reminiscences of friends, a poem, and the text of a speech. Notes contain miscellaneous jottings, lists of paintings, addresses and telephone information, and address books. Among the writings by others are catalog introductions for Levi exhibitions by unknown authors, and by Lewis Mumford and Archibald MacLeish for An American Group, Inc.
Financial Records concern both business and personal transactions and document art sales, commissions, consignments, and gallery expenses. Also included are receipts, a small number of banking and tax records, and scattered documentation of purchases, appraisals, and sales of antiques in his collection.
Scrapbooks (2 disbound volumes) contain clippings, other printed items, and a few photographs documenting Levi's exhibitions. There are a substantial number of exhibition catalogs and announcements. Miscellaneous printed material includes brochures, newsletters and publications, clippings, invitations, announcements of meetings, blank postcards, travel brochures and printed souvenirs. Also found is a copy of his book, Modern Art: An Introduction, and one of the articles he published in the American expatriate periodical Gargoyle.
Items of note among the Miscellaneous Records pertain to the American Artists' Congress, An American Group, Inc., Downtown Gallery, and New York City Council for Art Week. Other items of interest are a blueprint of plans for Levi's studio at his home in Easthampton, New York, and records regarding the New School for Social Research where Levi taught for many years.
Photographs of artwork include a disbound album of Levi's work and exhibition installation views that show paintings by Levi. Pictures of Levi include some taken when he was a young child, along with many views of him in his studio, with students, and others. Many views of places probably were used as reference for paintings. Other places recorded in photographs include Downtown Gallery, Stuart Davis's grave, and studios he occupied while in Paris, circa 1926-1927 and at the American Academy in Rome, 1967-1968. Of particular note are copies of Resettlement Administration and Farm Security Administration photographs.
The collection is organized into 9 series. Correspondence and Scrapbooks are arranged chronologically. Other series are further categorized by record type or broad topic, with material in each folder arranged chronologically or alphabetically, as noted in the series descriptions.
Series 1: Biographical Information, circa 1906-1980 (Box 1; 14 folders)
Series 2: Correspondence, circa 1846-1981 (Boxes 1-3, OV 9; 2.3 linear ft.)
Series 3: Artwork, circa 1922-1972 (Box 3; 8 folders)
Series 4: Writings and Notes, circa 1938-1978 (Box 3; 11 folders)
Series 5: Financial Records, 1920s-1980 (Box 3; 0.4 linear ft.)
Series 6: Scrapbooks, 1921-1940(Box 4; 2 folders)
Series 7: Printed Material, circa 1922-1981(Boxes 4-6 and OV 10; 2.3 linear ft.)
Series 8: Miscellaneous Records, circa 1940-1974 (Box 6 and OV 9; 0.2 linear ft.)
Series 9: Photographs, circa 1902-1974 (Boxes 6-8 and OV 11; 1.1 linear ft.)
Julian Edwin Levi was born in New York in 1900, and his family relocated to Philadelphia six years later. At age 17, Levi enrolled in the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts where he studied under Henry McCarter and Arthur B. Carles. Upon completing his studies at the Academy in 1919, Levi was awarded one of the Pennsylvania Academy's Cresson Traveling Scholarship which enabled him to travel to Italy during the summer of 1920.
Levi then headed to Paris where he spent the next four years. During this time he became fluent in French, looked at a wide variety of art that influenced him to experiment with abstraction, and had paintings accepted for exhibition the Salon d'Automne of 1921 and 1922. He met many artists in Paris, and developed a close friendship with Jules Pascin. He retuned for a second stay in Paris during 1926 and 1927.
Upon his return to Philadelphia in 1924, Levi and several other modern artists in the city (including his former instructors Carles and McCarter) began exhibiting together under the name "31." The group's work was not well-received. For the remainder of his time in Philadelphia, he continued to paint and on several occasions was able to see Albert Barnes' collection that normally was not open to the public. Levi moved to New York City in 1932 and was attracted to the support and cooperation offered by various artists' organizations. He became a member of An American Group, Inc., in 1933, and was in active in the American Artists' Congress beginning around 1937. Later, Levi was elected to the National Institute of Arts and Letters, an Associate Artist of the National Academy of Design, and a member of the Century Association.
The sea, beaches, dunes, and shores served as inspiration for many of Levi's paintings. He studied his subjects closely, amassing a wide knowledge of boats, fishing, and related equipment; he even learned professional fishing and sailing techniques in order to better understand his subjects. Levi also focused on painting people, and his wife often served as his model. Paintings by Levi are in many museums, among them: Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Art Institute of Chicago, Butler Institute of American Art, Cranbrook Academy of Art, Des Moines Art Center, Detroit Institute of Arts, Guild Hall, Museum of Modern Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Newark Museum, Norton Simon Museum, Santa Barbara Museum, Springfield Museum of Art, Toledo Museum, University of Illinois, and the Whitney Museum of American Art.
Many of the paintings Levi produced while employed by the Federal Art Project, 1936-1938, served as the nucleus of his first one-man show held in 1940 at Downtown Gallery. He remained with Downtown Gallery for more than a decade. Later, he was associated with the Alan Gallery, Frank K. M. Rehn Galleries, and Nordness Gallery, each of which staged frequent solo exhibitions of Levi's work. He participated in most of the major national exhibitions and in the Venice Biennale, winning prizes awarded by the Art Institute of Chicago, Carnegie Institute, National Academy of Design, University of Illinois, Guild Hall, and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. A large retrospective exhibition of his work was organized by Boston University in 1962, and a small retrospective was held in 1971 at Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
A highly respected and much loved teacher, Levi emphasized the importance of drawing and provided individualized instruction. He considered himself a "coach" and viewed his students as less experienced artists (all were encouraged to call him Julian instead of Mr. Levi). His teaching career, which lasted for more than three decades, began in 1946 with his appointments as a painting instructor at the Art Students League and the New School for Social Research in New York City (later the New School appointed him director of its Art Workshop). In 1964 he began making weekly trips to the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in Philadelphia, where he taught painting; at the start of the 1977 academic year, he reduced his schedule to once a month and acted as a general critic. During the 1967-68 academic year, Levi was on sabbatical leave while artist-in-residence at the American Academy in Rome. In addition, he taught summer courses at Columbia University in the early 1950s and occasionally served as a guest instructor at other summer programs over the years.
Julian Levi died in New York City, February 28, 1982, after a brief illness.
The papers were a gift received in several accessions between 1969-1982 from Julian E. Levi and his estate (Herman Englander, executor). Portions of the collection were microfilmed upon receipt.
The collection is open for research. Use requires an appointment and is limited to the Washington, D.C. office.
Series 1: Illustrated Envelopes contains envelopes drawn by Stephen Douglas and mounted on mat boards. This type of painted envelope is also called "patriotic." See Lawrence Sherman, United States Patriotic Envelopes of World War II, 2006.
Series 2: Unit History, documents the engineers in the South West Pacific, The 864th Aviation Engineers in World War II by Bob George, a member of the unit. The history contains anecdotes and photographs of many of the locales Mr. Douglas drew.
The collection is arranged into one series.
Biographical / Historical:
The Stephen Douglas Collection consists of eighty-one envelopes that Mr. Douglas mailed to his family from U.S. Army posts in the Pacific during World War II. Mr. Douglas decorated the front of the envelopes with watercolors depicting the life of a GI in the South Pacific.
Mr. Douglas grew up in Wewoka, Oklahoma and trained for one year at the Art Institute of Chicago. He then worked in the Oklahoma oil fields and sold paintings of scenes of oil production. He was drafted in the Army in 1942 and served as a corporal with the 864th Engineering Aviation Battalion, Army Corps of Engineers until war's end in 1945. After mustering out he worked thirty-three years in the Postal Service, retired and continued to paint.
Corporal Douglas began mailing the illustrated letters from Geiger Field, Washington, where his unit trained, then from Los Angeles where it shipped out. By the time the men arrived at Townsville, Australia in September 1943, US forces had already won the battle of Guadalcanal and were occupying much of the Solomon Islands. The rest of the Southwest Pacific including New Guinea had yet be taken before the Japanese could be driven out of the Pacific. His unit's mission was to build and maintain the airstrips and facilities that the allies would use as they advanced on Japan. The 864th moved through various bases in New Guinea then to Cape Gloucester in New Britain, and finally to Luzon in the Philippines.
Using a child's watercolor set, he captured both the deprivations of GI life at these bases and the romance of the islands with their colorful natives, lush foliage, lagoons and tropical moons. Some of the illustrations depict battle scenes involving aircraft and ships, others provide commentary on Army food, housing and recreation, or the lack thereof. They are all humorous or upbeat. The US aircraft or ships are always depicted on the envelopes defeating the enemy and one is a fanciful illustration of Hitler and Tojo on the run. But only fifteen of the eighty-one depict planes, ships, guns or fighting, and most of those are sketches of guard duty. The rest show GI's successfully coping with such mundane activities as laundry, showers, and latrines and overcoming boredom. Illustrating the envelopes was his way of escaping the tedium.
Mauldin Cartoon Collection, 1946 1987. Believed to contain all of Bill Mauldin's published cartoons during those years; also periodical and newspaper articles about and by Mauldin, personal items, including his genealogy, and an original sketchbook used by Mauldin while he was in Vietnam, February 1965.
War posters, ca. 1914 1960s (mostly 1942 1945). Isadore Warshaw donated this collection of 350 items. Artists such as Howard Chandler Christy, James Montgomery Flagg and Norman Rockwell are represented. It is part of the Smithsonian's Warshaw Collection of Business Americana
Jes Wilhelm Schlaikjer Poster Collection, 1942 1952. Twenty posters designed by Schlaikjer during World War II and after.
This collection was donated to the Archives Center, National Museum of American History by Mr. Stephen A. Douglas, the artist, on January 7th, 2001.
This collection was donated to the Archives Center, National Museum of American History by Mr. Stephen A. Douglas, the artist, on January 7th, 2001.
Collection is open for research.
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.
The Berryman family papers measure 11.4 linear feet and date from 1829 to 1984, with the bulk of the material dating from 1882 to 1961. The collection presents a good overview of the careers of Washington Star cartoonist Clifford Berryman, his daughter, Star art critic, Florence, and to a lesser extent, son Jim Berryman.
Scope and Content Note:
The Berryman family papers measure 11.4 linear feet and date from 1829 to 1984, with the bulk of the material dating from 1882 to 1961. The collection presents a good overview of the careers of Washington Star cartoonist Clifford Berryman, his daughter, Star art critic, Florence, and his son, Jim Berryman, though the latter's career is not as well represented. The papers also contain material relating to Kate Berryman, including a scrapbook and diaries.
The collection contains biographical material, correspondence, business records, notes and writings, scrapbooks, printed material, photographs, and artwork by Clifford and Jim Berryman and others.
The collection is arranged into three series according to individual family members; each series is arranged into subseries and material within each subseries is arranged chronologically.
Series 1: Clifford and Kate Berryman papers, 1829-1963, undated (boxes 1-7, 11-12, OVs 14-15, 7.9 linear ft.)
Series 2: Florence Berryman Papers, 1902-1984, undated (boxes 8-10, 13, 2.3 linear ft.)
Series 3: Jim Berryman Papers, 1919-1964, undated (boxes 10, 13, 1.1 linear ft.)
The patriarch of the Berryman family, Clifford Kennedy Berryman, was born in Versailles, Kentucky, in 1869. His first job was in the U.S. Patent Office in Washington, D.C. He became a cartoonist for the Washington Post in 1891. From 1907, until his death in 1949, Clifford Berryman was political cartoonist for the Washington Star, earning a reputation as the "Dean of American Cartoonist," and winning a Pulitzer Prize in 1944. His cartoon of Theodore Roosevelt, "Drawing the Line in Mississippi," 1902, began the American Teddy Bear craze, and created Berryman's cartoon trademark. He was also the first cartoonist to become president of the Gridiron Club. His wife, Kate, was an avid member of the Daughters of the American Revolution.
Their daughter, Florence Berryman, 1900-1992, abandoned her study of music because of a loss of hearing and turned her attention to art. In the 1920s, she became a free-lance local art critic, writing articles for newspapers. She later assisted Leila Mechlin, as an art critic for the Washington Star. In 1946, Florence Berryman succeeded Mechlin and worked for the Star until her retirement in 1961. She also served as editor for the American Federation of Arts until 1944.
Clifford and Kate Berryman's son, James Thomas Berryman, 1902-1976, attended George Washington University and the Corcoran School of Art. He worked as a reporter for the New Mexico State Tribune, until his return, in 1923, to Washington, D.C. because of his mother's illness. He worked at the Washington Star, as an editorial artist and illustrator, until 1933, when he became a sports cartoonist. When his father suffered a storke in 1935, Jim intermittently drew political cartoons for the STAR. Jim Berryman also won a Pulitzer Prize for his political cartoons.
The Archives of American Art also holds microfilm of material lent for microfilming (reel D111) including a scrapbook of memorabilia, 1905-1945, collected by Kate Berryman regarding her husband. The scrap book includes letters from Bernard Baruch, William Jennings Bryan, Harry Flood Byrd, Jay Darling, John Nance Garner, Herbert Hoover, Henry Cabot Lodge, Harry Truman, and Woodrow Wilson; clippings; cartoons; printed material; and photographs of Clifford, family members, William Jennings Bryan, John Nance Garner, Brenda Putnam, and William Howard Taft. Though some items in the scrapbook were subsequently donated, lent materials were returned to the lender and are not described in the collection container inventory.
Portions of the Berryman family papers were donated in 1965 by Florence Berryman, and in 1992 by her estate. The latter donation included portions of a scrapbook of memorabilia which had previously been lent for filming (reel D111) by Florence Berryman in 1962. The whearabouts of the other items in the scrapbook which were donated is unknown.
The collection is open for research. Patrons must use microfilm copy.
The Ralph Fabri papers measure 26.0 linear feet and are dated circa 1870s-1975, with the bulk of the material dated 1918-1975. Biographical information, correspondence, subject files, writings, art work, financial records, miscellaneous records, scrapbooks, printed material, a videotape of Fabri in his studio, and photographs document the professional career and personal life of the painter, printmaker, commercial artist, writer, and teacher.
Scope and Content Note:
The Ralph Fabri papers measure 26.0 linear feet and are dated circa 1870s-1975, with the bulk of the material dated 1918-1975. Biographical information, correspondence, subject files, writings, art work, financial records, miscellaneous records, scrapbooks, printed material, and photographs document the professional career and personal life of the painter, printmaker, commercial artist, writer, and teacher.
Biographical information includes awards and certificates, educational records, passports and travel documents.
Almost one-half of the collection consists of Fabri's correspondence. There is correspondence with friends and relatives, as well as professional correspondence. Much of the early correspondence with friends and family is written in Hungarian and also include small watercolors by Fabri that he used as postcards to send messages to family members. A number of later letters are illustrated with drawings by Fabri and other artists. Extensive correspondence - often daily missives - records romantic liaisons with Mabel Farrar, Mina Kocherthaler, Elly von Marczell, and Mavis Elizabeth Peat, as well as the travels and careers of Hungarian opera singer Maria Samson and composer and impresario Laszlo Schawrtz. In addition, there are large numbers of Christmas cards, many with original artwork, from artist friends and former students. Professional correspondence concerns teaching, writing and publishing, commercial work, exhibitions and sales.
Subject files relate mainly to organizations and institutions in which Fabri was active, and include his correspondence and some official records (minutes, reports, financial records), and printed material. Among the organizations and institutions are: Allied Artists of America, Inc., Artists for Victory, Inc., Audubon Artists of America, Inc., National Academy of Design, and Society of American Etchers. Other subject files concern the schools where Fabri taught and publications with which he was associated.
Among the writings by Fabri are drafts and completed manuscripts of articles, books (including two unpublished titles), music and lyrics, and a few poems. Diaries (75 vols.) covering the period 1918-1975, contain almost daily entries that record in varying degrees of detail his professional and personal activities, special and mundane events, and opinions. Prior to 1939, the diaries are in Hungarian or partially in Hungarian. Heavily illustrated notes from his studies at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts survive, along with other miscellaneous notes and 7 notebooks containing lists of concerts, operas, and plays attended by Fabri between 1912 and 1974.
Writings by other authors include the manuscript of Pastel Painting published by Stephen Csoka, said to have been written by Fabri.
Art work by Fabri includes student work, early commercial work, drawings and sketches, a few early watercolor paintings, and two sketchbooks. Work by other artists consists of a watercolor by his uncle Miklos Fabri, a pencil drawing by Laszlo Schwartz, a gouache painting by Paul Mommer, and an ink drawing by Marantz.
Financial records mainly concern banking transactions and taxes. In addition there are receipts for personal and business expenses and packages sent to family in Hungary.
Included among the miscellaneous records and artifacts are art sales and donations, six medals awarded to Fabri, and guest books. A videotape (SONY Helical Scan recording) of Fabri in his studio, made by Jerome Bona and Rick Brown that aired on NYC public access television station Channel C in 1973, is also included.
Scrapbooks (10 vols.) contain reproductions of Fabri's early commercial work, clippings, printed material, and a few photographs documenting his career.
Printed material by Fabri includes articles, books, commercial designs, reproductions, and works translated by Fabri for publication in Hungarian. Also included are issues of Today's Art containing signed and unsigned articles and editorials by Fabri, and some pieces he wrote using pseudonyms. Exhibition related items include catalogs, announcements, and invitations for Fabri's group and solo exhibitions and exhibitions of other artists. Also included are posters, and prospectuses.
Photographs are of art work, people, places, and miscellaneous subjects. People pictured are Ralph Fabri, his family (including a few ancestors), friends, and unidentified individuals and groups. Places documented include exterior views of Pension Villa-Fabri in Hungary (the family's restaurant and hotel), as well as photographs of foreign lands visited by Fabri or sent to him by friends. An item of note filed with miscellaneous subjects is a parade float titled "Give a Thought to Music," designed and constructed by Fabri. Included in ten photograph albums are views of paintings and commercial work by Fabri, various friends, his studio, the Dreiser estate in Mt. Kisco, N.Y., and group portraits of City College of New York faculty.
The collection is arranged into 10 series::
Series 1: Biographical Information, 1919-1973, undated (Box 1, OV 31; 0.2 linear ft.)
Series 2: Correspondence, 1904-1975, undated (Boxes 1-12; 11.0 linear ft.)
Series 3: Subject Files, 1941-1975, undated (Boxes 12-14, 25; 2.1 linear ft.)
Series 4: Writings, 1911-1975, undated (Boxes 14-17; 3.8 linear ft.)
Series 5: Art Work, circa 1903-1970s, undated (Boxes 17, 26; 0.4 linear ft.)
Series 6: Financial Records, 1923-1973, undated (Box 18; 0.6 linear ft.)
Series 7: Miscellaneous Records and Artifacts, 1931-1975, undated (Box 18; 0.4 linear ft.)
Series 8: Scrapbooks, 1911-1971 (Boxes 27-30; 1.3 linear ft.)
Series 9: Printed Material, 1910s-1973, undated (Boxes 19-23, OV 32; 4.8 linear ft.)
Series 10: Photographs, circa 1870s-1973, undated (Boxes 23-25; 1.4 linear ft.)
Painter and printmaker, commercial artist, writer, and teacher Ralph Fabri was born Fabri Reszo in Hungary in 1894. He was educated in Budapest, first studying architecture at the Royal Institute of Technology from 1912 to 1914. He then enrolled in the Royal Academy of Fine Arts, from which he graduated in 1918 with a Professor's Diploma (M.A.) "for teaching drawing, painting and geometry - including descriptive and projective geometry - in schools of higher education."
Fabri arrived in New York City in 1921 and soon adopted the anglicized version of his name, Ralph Fabri. He began doing commercial design work and during the academic year of 1923/24 was enrolled as an evening student at the National Academy of Design. After becoming an American citizen in 1927, he traveled extensively in Europe. Upon returning to New York that same year, Fabri decided his financial situation was stable enough to allow him to focus his attention on fine art.
During the Great Depression, Fabri's already inadequate portrait commissions and art sales further declined and he returned to commercial work. He established a workshop known as the Ralph Fabri Studios, that designed theatrical and movie sets, window displays, and retail interiors. But Fabri found the workshop dirty and distasteful, and eventually was able to concentrate on advertising work which could be done from home. The largest clients for his pen and ink drawings were The Stamp and Album Co. of America, Inc. (for which he designed covers for stamp albums and produced illustrations for envelopes housing sets of stamps sold to collectors), Geographica Map Co., and Joseph H. Cohen & Sons (for whom he designed and illustrated mail order catalogs). Another source of income during this period was the design and construction of an addition to "Iroki," Theodore Dreiser's estate in Mt. Kisco, N.Y., for which Fabri acted as architect and contractor.
Soon after arriving in the United States, Fabri began writing art reviews and articles on art and other topics for publication in Hungarian newspapers, and began submitting similar pieces to American newspapers and periodicals. Between 1949 and 1951 Pictures on Exhibit published a series of twenty articles by Fabri on materials and techniques, and from 1952 through 1961 he was a critic for that publication. Fabri contributed many articles on a variety of topics to Today's Art, starting in 1953, the year the magazine was established. In 1961, Fabri became associate editor of that monthly periodical and was named its editor in 1970, a position he held for the remainder of his life. During his tenure, every issue of Today's Art included signed and unsigned articles and editorials by Fabri, as well as some pieces written under pseudonyms. He also worked as a book reviewer for American Artist and art editor of Funk & Wagnall's New Encyclopedia.
Fabri may be best known for his books in the how-to-do-it vein, some of which were distributed through art supply stores. Among his many books are: Learn to Draw (1945), Oil Painting: How-to-Do-It! (1953), A Guide to Polymer Painting (1966), Sculpture in Paper (1966), Color: A Complete Guide for Artists (1967), Complete Guide to Flower Painting (1968), The First Hundred Years: History of the American Watercolor Society (1969), Painting Outdoors (1969), Painting Cityscapes (1970), and Artist's Guide to Composition (1971).
For nearly three decades, Fabri taught art in New York City. He was an instructor in the life and still life classes at the Parson's School of Design from 1947 through 1949. In 1951, Fabri was appointed associate professor at City College of New York, where he taught painting and art history until retiring in 1967. In addition, he was on the faculty of School of the National Academy of Design, teaching painting, drawing, and graphics from 1964 until his death.
Fabri was an active member of many artists' organizations. He was president of the National Society of Painters in Casein, Inc., an organization founded by Fabri in 1953 (it later became the National Society of Painters in Casein and Acrylic, Inc.); he also served as president of the Audubon Artists and the Allied Artists of America, Inc. As historian of The American Watercolor Society, Fabri wrote a book length history of that organization published on the occasion of its centennial. He was the secretary and treasurer of the National Academy of Design, as well as serving on many of its committees.
Paintings and prints by Ralph Fabri have been exhibited widely in solo and group exhibitions throughout the United States and, to a lesser extent, in Europe. A frequent lecturer, his painting demonstrations were quite popular. Fabri received numerous honors and awards, and his work is included in the permanent collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Library of Congress, the New York Public Library, the National Academy of Design, the Norfolk Museum of Art and Science, Smithsonian Institution, the Museum of Fine Arts, the National Gallery in Budapest, and many other public and private collections.
Ralph Fabri died in New York City in February 1975.
Ralph Fabri donated his correspondence with Theodore and Helen Dreiser, 1929-1955, to the University of Pennsylvania, where it is now part of the Theodore Dreiser papers.
The Ralph Fabri papers were donated by Ralph Fabri, 1971-1974. Additional papers were the gift of his estate, 1975-1976.
The collection is open for research. Use requires an appointment.
Art critics -- New York (State) -- New York Search this
The David Gallery records measure 0.5 linear feet and date from 1963 to 1982. This small collection sheds light on the gallery's operations through correspondence, photographs, printed material, exhibition ephemera, and several price lists. The collection also includes an etching by artist Lucas Johnson.
Scope and Contents:
The David Gallery records measure 0.5 linear feet and date from 1963 to 1982. The collection consists of correspondence with museums, friends, and artists, including Seymour Leichman and illustrated letters by Donald Roller Wilson; an essay, posters, announcements, and catalogs from exhibitions held at David Gallery; an etching made by Lucas Wilson; newspaper clippings, advertisements, and articles; and the resumes of artists Bob Fowler and Bruce Kleinsmith, also known as Futzie Nutzle. Photographs in the collection include images of artists Lucas Johnson, Forest Moses, Bob Fowler, Paul Maxwell, Bob Camblin, and others; events and exhibitions held at David Gallery; the gallery's exterior; an exhibition installation; and of Dianne David, the gallery's founder.
Due to the small size of this collection the records are arranged as one series.
Biographical / Historical:
The David Gallery was founded in Houston, Texas in 1963 by Dianne David. The gallery exhibited mostly local painters and sculptors, and had a large influence on the Houston contemporary art scene. David was known for representing and exhibiting artists whose work and personality she liked personally. Artists shown at the gallery include Bob Camblin, Lucas Johnson, Donald Roller Wilson, Seymour Leichmann, and Bob Fowler, all of whom she became friends with. David closed her gallery in 1982.
The Archives of American Art also holds microfilm of material lent for microfilming. Reel 3100 frames 1-138 consist of David Gallery exhibition announcements. Reel 3100 frames 143-583 consists of 14 artists' files compiled by Dianne David, which include correspondence, mostly letters received by Dianne David; printed material; sketches and 2 etchings by Bob Camblin; and photographs of artists, their works and 1 photo of the gallery. Artists' include: William C. Agee, Jack Boynton, Bob Camblin, Roy Fridge, James Kearns, Seymour Leichman, Jim Love, David McManaway, Robert Morris, Futzie Nutzle, Peter Paone, Mike Selig and Don Shaw. Materials were returned to the lenders after microfilming. Loaned materials were returned to the donor and are not described in the collection container inventory.
Microfilmed as part of the Archives of American Art's Texas project, material on reel 3100, frames 1-138 were lent for microfilming 1983 by Lester Giese; and reel 3100 frames 143-583 were lent for microfilming in 1983 by Dianne David, owner of the gallery. The records were donated in 1981 by Dianne David.
This collection is open for research. Access to original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center.
Art -- Collectors and collecting -- Texas -- Houston Search this
Art galleries, Commercial -- Texas
David Gallery records, 1963-1982. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
The processing of this collection received Federal support from the Smithsonian Collections Care and Preservation Fund, administered by the National Collections Program and the Smithsonian Collections Advisory Committee.