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Oral history interview with Michael Cohen

Interviewee:
Cohen, Michael, 1936-  Search this
Interviewer:
Williams, Gerald, 1926-2014  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
Cranbrook Academy of Art  Search this
Haystack Mountain School of Crafts  Search this
Massachusetts College of Art  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Burke, Ron  Search this
Glick, John Parker, 1938-  Search this
Goodwin, Harriet  Search this
Leach, Bernard, 1887-1979  Search this
Merritt, Francis Sumner, 1913-2000  Search this
Sedestrom, Bob  Search this
Voulkos, Peter, 1924-2002  Search this
Wyman, William, 1922-1980  Search this
Extent:
37 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
2001 August 11
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Michael Cohen conducted 2001 August 11, by Gerry Williams, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at his home, in Pelham, Massachusetts.
Cohen speaks of his childhood, living outside of Boston, Massachusetts; his first adventures in art; attending Mass Art; his attraction to clay; his mentors; his first job with Bill Wyman; joining the Army; his travels; his unhappy experience at Cranbrook Academy of Art; his first studio in his mother's basement; enjoying his first summer at Haystack Mountain School of Crafts and the other schools of craft; how his pottery is meant to be functional; his fear of dying at 59 and the great sculptural work he did in that year; exhibition shows and how they have changed over the course of his career; why he's moved to primarily making tiles; apprenticeship and the benefits of paying your apprentices; how expensive being in the pottery business has become; various teaching and workshop experiences; local pottery guilds he is a part of; the creation and design of his studio space; technological advances in the field and the distinctive tools he loves to use; specialized periodicals that he reads or looks at; what makes a pot beautiful; limitations in clay; commissions and the lack of benefits involved with commissions; the permanent collections of museums that he is a part of; how he thinks he will be remembered; his most memorable exhibitions; where he gets his ideas from; social and political issues he's involved in and how he does not include them in his work; the craft organizations; curators he's enjoyed working with; his ex-wife Harriet Goodwin and how their collaboration was important to his work. Cohen also recalls Francis Merritt, Bernard Leach, Peter Voulkos, Ron Burke, John Glick, Bob Sedestrom, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Michael Cohen (1936-) is a ceramist from Amherst, Massachusetts. Gerry Williams (1926-) is the editor of Studio Potter from Goffstown, New Hampshire.
General:
Originally recorded on 2 sound cassettes. Reformatted in 2010 as 4 digital wav files. Duration is 2 hr.; 6 min.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.
Restrictions:
For more information on how to access this interview contact Reference Services.
Occupation:
Ceramicists -- Massachusetts -- Interview  Search this
Topic:
Ceramics -- Equipment and supplies  Search this
Ceramics -- Study and teaching  Search this
Ceramics -- Technique  Search this
Ceramics. -- Economic aspects  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Function:
Artists' studios
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.cohen01
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-cohen01

Oral history interview with Ruth Duckworth

Interviewee:
Duckworth, Ruth, 1919-2009  Search this
Interviewer:
Trapp, Kenneth R.  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
Central School of Arts and Crafts (Birmingham, England)  Search this
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
University of Chicago -- Faculty  Search this
DeVore, Richard, 1933-2006  Search this
Larsen, Jack Lenor, 1927-2020  Search this
Leach, Bernard, 1887-1979  Search this
McKinnell, James  Search this
McKinnell, Nan  Search this
Moore, Henry, 1898-1986  Search this
Rie, Lucie  Search this
Vergette, Nicholas, 1923-1974  Search this
Westphal, Alice  Search this
Extent:
67 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
2001 April 27
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Ruth Duckworth conducted 2001 April 27, by Kenneth R. Trapp, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at the studios of Smithsonian Productions, Washington, D.C.
Duckworth speaks of her early life and the time prior to her family leaving Germany; the decision to leave Germany in 1936 due to Hitler and the War; acclimating herself to England; attending Liverpool School of Art; WWII in England and the psychological effects of working in munitions factories; her nervous breakdown and seven years of therapy; her beginning to sculpt; her first exhibition of sculpture in London; her marriage and life with Aidron; difficulties in being an outsider in the world of art, specifically speaking about being a woman in sculpture; her first meeting with Lucie Rie; the devastation she felt after her brother died; attendance at the Hammersmith School of Art and not feeling her place there; switching to Central School of Arts and Crafts; her first job teaching ceramics at the Central School; learning the technique of glazing; visiting museums in London; how poetry nourished her during those early years, specifically the poetry of Rainer Maria Rilke; the selling of her first pieces, "pieces that wouldn't sell"; the art scene in London; how the opportunity at the University of Chicago arose; her experience at the University of Chicago, an academic institution rather than a fine arts school; her first big show in the U.S. at the University in 1965; her graduate and undergraduate students; life as a foreigner in the U.S.; the opportunity to teach at the University of Iowa but becoming an associate professor at the University of Chicago instead; the cultural movement and ceramics movement in the U.S. during the 1960's; how her work changed from European influences to American influences; departments in art that were very unfriendly to women; her association with James and Nan McKinnell; her excursions and teaching trips across the U.S. as well as in Canada and Israel; her trip with Aidron across the U.S. and then their eventual separation; her friendship with Alice Westphal and the creation of the gallery Exhibit A; the unconscious changes in her work; her views on stoneware versus porcelain; Jack Lenor Larsen's summer show and the artists she met through that; her relationship with American museums versus European; unfortunate events at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts; her continued feelings as an outsider but acceptance in later life as an artist, more so from the ceramic community than from the museum community; publications and catalogues of her work; the influences other artists have had upon her work; the limited use of color in her work; her collection of bones; her love of gardening; her sketches; the therapy coiling clay does for her; her projects at the moment; where she gets her ideas from; how she sees herself fitting in versus not fitting in; her speech at an international symposium in Amsterdam; what she would include in a retrospective of her artwork; her hopes to have her work be therapeutic to viewers and cause them to contemplate it; more thoughts on color; American culture; what matters most to her right now and that is saving the Earth; wishing to continue with her work and have a better relationship with museums. Ruth Duckworth recalls, Henry Moore, Bernard Leach, Nellie Barr, Virginia Ferrari, Hardy Schlick, Richard DeVore, Nicholas Vergette, Jane Goodall and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Ruth Duckworth (1919-2009) was a sculptor and clay artist from Chicago, Illinois. Kenneth Trapp (1943- ) is curator-in-charge at the Smithsonian's Renwick Gallery.
General:
Originally recorded on 2 DAT tapes. Reformatted in 2010 as 2 digital wav files. Duration is 2 hr., 29 min.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.
Topic:
Ceramics -- Study and teaching  Search this
Ceramics -- Technique  Search this
Ceramicists -- Illinois -- Chicago -- Interviews  Search this
Mental illness -- Treatment  Search this
Sculptors -- Illinois -- Chicago -- Interviews  Search this
Women potters -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
Women sculptors -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
World War, 1939-1945  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.duckwo01
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-duckwo01

Oral history interview with Warren MacKenzie

Interviewee:
MacKenzie, Warren, 1924-2018  Search this
Interviewer:
Silberman, Robert B. (Robert Bruce), 1950-  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
Art Institute of Chicago -- Student  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
University of Minnesota -- Faculty  Search this
Hamada, Shōji, 1894-1978  Search this
Leach, Bernard, 1887-1979  Search this
MacKenzie, Alixandra Kolesky, d. 1962  Search this
Extent:
44 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
2002 October 29
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Warren MacKenzie conducted 2002 October 29, by Robert Silberman, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, in Stillwater, Minnesota.
MacKenzie speaks of his early childhood and eagerness to become a painter; being drafted in 1943; returning from active duty in the Army to find all the painting classes full and registering for a ceramic class; the significance of Bernard Leach's, "A Potter's Book" to his early ceramic education, and fellow classmates; his studies at the Chicago Art Institute; museums in Chicago; his first wife, potter, Alix MacKenzie; traveling to England to receive further training from Leach, first being rejected and then returning a year later to work 2 1/2 years at Leach Pottery at St. Ives; contacts such as Shoji Hamada, Ben Nicholson, Barbara Hepworth, Terry Frost, Peter Lanyon, and others; his lack of interest in sculptural ceramics; the good remnants of Leach pottery pots in his pottery today; Korean and Japanese influences; the International Potters and Weavers Conference in 1952 and returning to the U.S.; Alix's role in arranging Hamada's tour of the U.S. and exhibition in St. Paul; building their first pottery; exhibitions at the Walker Arts Center; purchasing the best Hamada pot at the St. Paul exhibit; teaching at the University of Minnesota; his experiences at craft schools; his involvement with NCECA [National Council on Education in Ceramic Art] and the Minnesota Craft Council; his travels; the self-service showroom on his property; changes in the field of ceramics; the 1968 fire that destroyed his barn studio; his working process; his experience with a salt kiln; experimenting in each firing; and his monthly work schedule. MacKenzie also recalls Kathleen Blackshear, Lucie Rie, Hans Coper, Soetsu Yanagi, Jerry Liebling, Allen Downs, Walter Quirt, Phil Morton, Curt Heuer, Karen Karnes, David Weinrib, Josef Albers, Kenneth Ferguson, Rudy Autio, Peter Voulkos, Tatsuzo Shimaoka, David Lewis, Michael Cardew, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Warren MacKenzie (1924-2018) was a ceramist from Stillwater, Minnesota.
General:
Originally recorded on 3 sound discs. Reformatted in 2010 as 9 digital wav files. Duration is 3 hrs., 33 min.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.
Restrictions:
Transcript available on the Archives of American Art website.
Topic:
Ceramicists -- Minnesota -- Interviews  Search this
Ceramics. -- Economic aspects  Search this
Ceramics -- Study and teaching  Search this
Ceramics -- Technique  Search this
Ceramics -- Equipment and supplies  Search this
Ceramics -- Japan  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.macken02
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-macken02

Oral history interview with Betty Woodman

Interviewee:
Woodman, Betty, 1930-2018  Search this
Interviewer:
Perreault, John, 1937-2015  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
Bellagio Study and Conference Center  Search this
Boulder (Colo.).. Parks & Recreation Department  Search this
Centre internationale de recherche sur le verre et les arts plastiques (Marseille, France)  Search this
Europees Keramisch Werkcentrum  Search this
Fabric Workshop  Search this
Girl Scouts of the United States of America  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
School for American Crafts  Search this
University of Colorado -- Faculty  Search this
Brown, Elenita  Search this
Carlson, Cynthia, 1942-  Search this
Hamada, Shōji, 1894-1978  Search this
Higby, Wayne  Search this
Kozloff, Joyce  Search this
Kushner, Robert, 1949-  Search this
Leach, Bernard, 1887-1979  Search this
Serra, Richard, 1938-  Search this
Shark, Bud  Search this
Voulkos, Peter, 1924-2002  Search this
Woodman, George, 1932-  Search this
Extent:
5 Items (Sound recording: 5 sound files (2 hr., 55 min.), digital wav)
69 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Interviews
Sound recordings
Place:
Boulder (Colo.)
India -- description and travel
Mexico -- description and travel
Netherlands -- description and travel
Date:
2003 April 22 and 29
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Betty Woodman conducted 2003 April 22 and 29, by John Perreault, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, in New York, New York.
Woodman speaks of frequent moves with her family during her childhood; her father's woodworking skills; gaining an interest in arts and crafts at four when she made a tablecloth with crayon drawings; attending summer camps, including Girl Scout Camp, where she participated in arts and crafts activities; being the first girl to take shop in her middle school; making model airplanes for air raid wardens during World War II; her interest in making functional objects; her introduction to clay and hand-building in high school; attending the School for American Craftsmen in New York City; collaborating with fellow students; her early desire to be a "craftsperson and not an artist"; her work with silk-screen fabric for The Fabric Workshop in Philadelphia and glass at CIRVA in Marseille, France; teaching at the University of Colorado and the City of Boulder Recreation Department; working at the European Ceramic Work Center in Den Bosch, Holland, and the Bellagio Study Center in Italy; her studios in New York, Colorado, and Italy; her travels to India, The Netherlands, and Mexico; living in New Mexico, New York, Colorado, and Italy; her business Roadrunner Pottery in New Mexico with partner Elenita Brown; collaborative projects with Joyce Kozloff, Cynthia Carlson, Bud Shark, Judith Solodkin, and her husband George Woodman; developing a following in New York; how being a woman has affected her work and how she enjoys working with other women artists; the change of market for American crafts; Italian, Greek, and Etruscan influences; teaching experiences; the importance of getting reviews in art magazines; and the strong support from her husband George, a painter. Betty Woodman recalls Lynn Feelyn, Olan Wassen, Bernard Leach, Peter Voulkos, Shoji Hamada, Bob Kushner, Richard Serra, Wayne Higby, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Betty Woodman (1930-2018) was a ceramist from New York, New York. John Perreault (1937- ) is an independent critic and curator from New York, New York.
General:
Originally recorded on 3 sound discs. Reformatted in 2010 as 5 digital wav files. Duration is 2 hr., 55 min.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.
Topic:
Airplanes -- Models  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Ceramicists -- New York (State) -- New York -- Interviews  Search this
Ceramics -- Study and teaching  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Glass art  Search this
Handicraft -- United States  Search this
Screen process printing  Search this
Women artists -- New York (State) -- New York -- Interviews  Search this
World War, 1939-1945  Search this
Function:
Artists' studios
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Identifier:
AAA.woodma03
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-woodma03

Oral history interview with Merry Renk

Interviewee:
Renk, Merry, 1921-2012  Search this
Interviewer:
Fisch, Arline M.  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
750 Studio  Search this
American Craft Council  Search this
Institute of Design (Chicago, Ill.) -- Students  Search this
Metal Arts Guild  Search this
Mobilia Gallery  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
School of Industrial Design (Trenton, N.J.) -- Students  Search this
University of California, Berkeley. Department of Art -- Faculty  Search this
Albers, Josef  Search this
Asawa, Ruth  Search this
Bates, Kenneth F. (Kenneth Francis), 1904-1994  Search this
Brancusi, Constantin, 1876-1957  Search this
Brynner, Irena  Search this
Cunningham, Imogen, 1883-1976  Search this
Curtis, Earle  Search this
De Patta, Margaret, 1903-1964  Search this
Godfrey, Mary Jo Slick  Search this
Guermonprez, Trude, 1910-1976  Search this
Hall, Doris.  Search this
Nordness, Lee  Search this
Oliver, Olive  Search this
Tajiri, Shinkichi, 1923-2009  Search this
Tawney, Lenore  Search this
Extent:
49 Pages (Transcript)
1 Item (sound file (4 min. 15 sec.) Audio excerpt, digital)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Interviews
Sound recordings
Date:
2001 January 18-19
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Merry Renk conducted 2001 January 18-19, by Arline M. Fisch, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, in Renk's home and studio, San Francisco, California.
Renk speaks of her family background; growing up during the Depression; her father's creativity and encouragement; early inspiration from "the structure of nature"; attending the School of Industrial Arts in Trenton, N.J., and later the Institute of Design in Chicago; student life at the Institute of Design; establishing a studio and gallery, 750 Studio, at 750 North Dearborn, in Chicago, in 1947, with two other students, Mary Jo Slick [Godfrey] and Olive [Bunny] Oliver; managing 750 Studio and organizing exhibitions of Harry Callahan, Henry Miller, Lazlo Maholy-Nagy, Warren and Ethel MacKenzie, Doris Hall, and others; working with enamels; early "primitive" spirals; decision to be a jeweler; the importance of the "wearability" of jewelry; moving to San Francisco in 1948; living in Paris, 1950-1951; relationship with Shinkichi Tajiri; visiting Constantin Brancusi; traveling with Lenore Tawney through Spain and Morocco; settling in San Francisco; friendship with sculptor and neighbor Ruth Asawa; learning about Josef Albers from Asawa, resulting in experiments with folded metal; meeting her second husband, potter Earle Curtis on Halloween 1954; purchasing and remodeling their home; teaching part-time at the University of California, Berkeley and in workshops; her children, Baunnie and Sandra; managing motherhood and jewelry making in a two-artist household; drawing as a form of inventory; the influence of Lee Nordness; learning the plique-à-jour technique of enameling through trial and error; early influence of Doris Hall's work; working with wire; use of natural forms and interlocking forms; the process of making Wedding Crown (1968) for the exhibition Objects USA; making wedding crowns for her daughters; her shift from non-objective art to portraiture and symbolic imagery in the early 1970s; making large-scale sculpture in 1974, then "drifting back" to jewelry; importance of working independently; her "memory paintings" in the 1980s; evolution of her name from Mary Ruth Gibbs to Merry Renk Curtis (married Stanley Renk in 1941); her involvement with local guilds such as the Metal Arts Guild of San Francisco and national organizations such as the American Craft Council (ACC); lack of critical writing about her work; the value of exhibitions; various pieces in museum collections; early ACC conferences; her long friendship with photographer Imogen Cunningham; posing for Cunningham; becoming an ACC fellow; her jewelry tools; the process of painting compared to jewelry making. She also mentions Kenneth Bates, Trude Guermonprez, Irena Brynner, the Mobilia Gallery in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and her mentor Margaret de Patta.
Biographical / Historical:
Merry Renk (1921-2012) was a jeweler, painter, and sculptor from San Francisco, California. Arline M. Fisch (1931-) is a metalsmith from San Diego, California.
General:
Originally recorded on 3 sound cassettes. Reformatted in 2010 as 6 digital wav files. Duration is 3 hr., 9 min.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.
Topic:
Enamel and enameling  Search this
Enamelers -- California -- San Francisco -- Interviews  Search this
Jewelry making  Search this
Jewelers -- California -- San Francisco -- Interviews  Search this
Painters -- California -- San Francisco -- Interviews  Search this
Sculptors -- United States -- Interviews  Search this
Sculptors -- California -- Interviews  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Identifier:
AAA.renk01
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-renk01

Oral history interview with John Marshall

Interviewee:
Marshall, John, 1936-  Search this
Interviewer:
Herman, Lloyd E.  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
Carnegie Institute of Technology -- Students  Search this
Carnegie Museum of Art -- Students  Search this
Cleveland Institute of Art -- Students  Search this
Grove City College -- Students  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Society of North American Goldsmiths  Search this
Syracuse University -- Faculty  Search this
Bacorn, Don  Search this
Bates, Kenneth F. (Kenneth Francis), 1904-1994  Search this
Clague, John, 1928-  Search this
DuSell, Lee  Search this
Griffin, Gary, 1945-  Search this
Hauberg, Anne Gould  Search this
Lannan, J. Patrick  Search this
Lutz, Winifred  Search this
Metcalf, Bruce, 1949-  Search this
Miller, Fred, (Decorative artist)  Search this
Miller, John Paul, 1918-  Search this
Nordness, Lee  Search this
Penington, Ruth, b. 1905  Search this
Scott, Michael, 1958-  Search this
Smith, Paul J., 1931-  Search this
Solberg, Ramona  Search this
Takaezu, Toshiko  Search this
Extent:
6 Items (Sound recording: 6 sound files (3 hrs., 2 min.), digital, wav)
45 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Interviews
Sound recordings
Place:
Europe -- description and travel
Germany -- description and travel
Date:
2001 April 5
Scope and Contents:
An interview of John Marshall conducted 2001 April 5, by Lloyd Herman, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, in Edmonds, Washington.
Marshall speaks of his childhood in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; participating in an educational program with the Carnegie Museum; his exposure to art while in grade school and throughout his education; joining the army after high school; spending time in Germany with the army and experiencing the metalwork of that area; learning to work hard from his father; his family background; attending Grove City College, then working in construction during the day and going to classes at Carnegie Tech during the night; finally attending Cleveland Institute of Art; some of his teachers at the Institute, Kenneth Bates, Toshiko Takaezu, and John Clague; his first experiences with metal, Fred Miller, and learning how to design metal pieces; getting a job as head of the metals department at Syracuse and completing his MFA there; meeting Paul Smith and Lee Nordness, and participating in Objects: USA; his travels throughout Europe; the many commissions he has done for churches, everything from baptismal bowls, chalices, and crosses; Patrick Lannan, and how instrumental he was in Marshall's career, his collection of work that Lannan bought and where it all is now located; the different types of communities in the different areas he lived; commissions and how they were important to his career; how he challenges himself with new ideas and creations; the Handy and Harman Workshop; the difference between a university trained artist and one who has learned his/her craft outside academia; his students and how much satisfaction he has received from teaching; the decline in metal working programs at the university level; the influence of other faculty members on his work, such as Lee DuSell; the critics of metalwork, Bruce Metcalf and Gary Griffin; his involvement in the Society of North American Goldsmiths; and his two sons. Marshall also recalls John Paul Miller, Winifred Lutz, Ramona Solberg, Ruth Penington, Michael Scott, Don Bacorn, Annie Hauberg, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
John Marshall (1936- ) is a jeweler and metalsmith from Edmonds, Washington. Lloyd Herman (1936- ) is the former director of the Smithsonian Institution's Renwick Gallery from Seattle, Washington.
General:
Originally recorded on 4 sound cassettes. Reformatted in 2010 as 6 digital wav files. Duration is 3 hrs., 2 min.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.
Topic:
Decorative arts  Search this
Jewelers -- Washington (State) -- Interviews  Search this
Metal-workers -- Washington (State) -- Interviews  Search this
Religious articles  Search this
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Identifier:
AAA.marsha01
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-marsha01

Oral history interview with Karen LaMonte

Interviewee:
LaMonte, Karen, 1967-  Search this
Interviewer:
Riedel, Mija, 1958-  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Extent:
164 Pages (Transcript)
7 Items (7 sound files. (5 hrs., 20 min) Audio, digital, wav)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
2012 November 2-3
Scope and Contents:
An interview with Karen LaMonte conducted 2012 November 2 and 3, by Mija Riedel, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at LaMonte's studio in Prague, Czech Republic.
Biographical / Historical:
Karen LaMonte (1967- ) is a sculptor in Prague, Czech Republic. Mija Riedel (1958- ) is an independent scholar in San Francisco, California.
General:
Originally recorded on 4 SD cards as 7 digital wav files. Duration is 5 hrs., 20 min.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.
Restrictions:
The transcript and audio recording are open for research. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Topic:
Sculptors -- Interviews  Search this
Women artists -- Interviews  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.lamont12
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-lamont12
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Kay Sekimachi [Stocksdale], 2001 July 26-August 6

Interviewee:
Stocksdale, Kay Sekimachi, 1926-  Search this
Interviewer:
Baizerman, Suzanne  Search this
Subject:
Adamson, Glenn  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Type:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Topic:
Decorative arts  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Asian American art  Search this
Asian American artists  Search this
Asian American women artists  Search this
Japanese American art  Search this
Japanese American artists  Search this
Japanese American women artists  Search this
Asian American fiber artists  Search this
Japanese Americans -- Evacuation and relocation, 1942-1945  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)11768
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)227771
AAA_collcode_sekima01
Theme:
Craft
Women
Asian American
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_227771
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Akio Takamori, 2009 March 20-21

Interviewee:
Takimori, Akio, 1950-  Search this
Interviewer:
Riedel, Mija, 1958-  Search this
Subject:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Asian American art  Search this
Asian American artists  Search this
Japanese American art  Search this
Japanese American artists  Search this
Asian American ceramicists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)15660
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)282416
AAA_collcode_takamo09
Theme:
Asian American
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_282416
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Mira Nakashima, 2010 March 11

Interviewee:
Nakashima, Mira, 1942-  Search this
Interviewer:
McElhinney, James, 1952-  Search this
Subject:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Asian American art  Search this
Asian American artists  Search this
Asian American women artists  Search this
Japanese American art  Search this
Japanese American artists  Search this
Japanese American women artists  Search this
Asian American woodworkers  Search this
Asian American furniture designers  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)15799
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)288894
AAA_collcode_nakash10
Theme:
Women
Asian American
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_288894
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Karen LaMonte, 2012 November 2-3

Interviewee:
LaMonte, Karen, 1967-  Search this
Interviewer:
Riedel, Mija, 1958-  Search this
Subject:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Sculptors -- Interviews  Search this
Women artists -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)16066
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)338394
AAA_collcode_lamont12
Theme:
Women
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_338394
Online Media:

Evolving Forms with Frances Senska/ Montana State University; writer and director, Tim Schwab, 1978

Creator:
Senska, Frances, 1914-2009  Search this
Subject:
Schwab, Tim  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Type:
Video recordings
Topic:
Ceramics -- Technique  Search this
Ceramics -- Equipment and supplies  Search this
Clay  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)11590
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)249516
AAA_collcode_sensfran
Theme:
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_249516

Joanne Rapp Gallery/the Hand and the Spirit records, circa 1958-2004, bulk 1973-1998

Creator:
Joanne Rapp Gallery/the Hand and the Spirit  Search this
Subject:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Topic:
Handicraft  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)11581
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)248996
AAA_collcode_joanrapg
Theme:
The Art Market
Art Gallery Records
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_248996

Daniel Jacobs and Derek Mason papers, [circa 1970-1993]

Creator:
Jacobs, Daniel, 1959-2005  Search this
Mason, Derek, 1927-  Search this
Subject:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Prints, American  Search this
Art -- Collectors and collecting -- Virginia -- Richmond  Search this
Ceramics -- United States  Search this
Painting -- United States  Search this
Sculpture -- United States  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)13390
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)258446
AAA_collcode_jacodani
Theme:
The Art Market
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_258446

Margaret De Patta papers, circa 1930-2012

Creator:
De Patta, Margaret, 1903-1964  Search this
Subject:
Davis, Adelle  Search this
Barson, Fred  Search this
Bielawski, Eugene  Search this
Fleisher, Janet  Search this
Flory, Alice  Search this
McHendrie, Janet  Search this
Ries, Victor  Search this
Untracht, Oppi  Search this
Designs Contemporary  Search this
Oregon State System of Higher Education  Search this
Nanny's Design Gallery  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
San Francisco Metal Arts Guild  Search this
California College of Arts and Crafts (San Francisco, Calif.)  Search this
California Labor School  Search this
Type:
Photographs
Sketchbooks
Designs
Drawings
Topic:
Designers -- California  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)11059
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)246467
AAA_collcode_depamarg
Theme:
Women
Lives of American Artists
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_246467
Online Media:

Margaret De Patta papers

Creator:
De Patta, Margaret, 1903-1964  Search this
Names:
California College of Arts and Crafts (San Francisco, Calif.)  Search this
California Labor School  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Nanny's Design Gallery  Search this
Oregon State System of Higher Education  Search this
San Francisco Metal Arts Guild  Search this
Barson, Fred  Search this
Bielawski, Eugene  Search this
Davis, Adelle  Search this
Designs Contemporary  Search this
Fleisher, Janet  Search this
Flory, Alice  Search this
McHendrie, Janet  Search this
Ries, Victor, 1907-  Search this
Untracht, Oppi  Search this
Extent:
2.7 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Sketchbooks
Designs
Drawings
Date:
circa 1930-2012
Summary:
The papers of California jewelry designer Margaret De Patta measure 2.7 linear feet and date from circa 1930 to 2012. The papers include correspondence, writings, teaching files, exhibition files, personal business records, printed material, artwork and sketchbooks, and photographs.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of California jewelry designer Margaret De Patta measure 2.7 linear feet and date from circa 1930 to 2012. The papers include correspondence, writings, teaching files, exhibition files, personal business records, printed material, artwork and sketchbooks, and photographs.

Personal and professional correspondence is with family, friends, artists, galleries, museums, and universities. Notable correspondents include Fred Barson, Adelle Davis, Janet Fleisher, Alice Flory, Janet McHendrie, Victor Ries, Oppi Untracht, and Nanny's Design Gallery.

Writings include essays, personal statements, and notes. There is also an outline for a book on design and an annotated calendar.

Teaching files consist of course materials, administrative records, meeting minutes, and limited correspondence from the California Labor School. There are also a few folders from the California College of Arts and Crafts and the Oregon State System of Higher Education.

Exhibition files include announcements, correspondence, inventories, price lists, loan forms, and other material for Margaret De Patta shows at museums and galleries.

Personal business records consist of financial, legal, and administrative records on Margaret De Patta's jewelry designs and sales, as well as material related to Designs Contemporary, the jewelry production business created and managed by De Patta and her husband Eugene Bielawski. There is also material on large gifts and loans to museums and universities, and files relating to the San Francisco Metal Arts Guild.

Printed materials are mostly clippings about Margaret De Patta and other subjects, along with a few magazines and periodicals, including the San Francisco Metal Arts Guild newsletters, 1952-1964.

There is one sketchbook and several folders of drawings, jewelry designs, and flatware designs.

The bulk of the photographs are of jewelry and other objects designed by Margaret De Patta. There are a few photographs of Margaret De Patta working on jewelry and other subjects, such as a trip to Japan and her house on Laidley Street in California.
Arrangement:
This collection is arranged as 8 series.

Series 1: Correspondence, 1946-2011 (0.4 linear feet; Box 1)

Series 2: Writings, circa 1935-1963 (0.1 linear feet; Box 1)

Series 3: Teaching Files, 1944-1969 (0.2 linear feet; Box 1)

Series 4: Exhibition Files, 1948-2012 (0.4 linear feet; Boxes 1-2)

Series 5: Personal Business Records, 1943-2001 (0.9 linear feet; Box 2)

Series 6: Printed Material, 1938-1981 (0.1 linear feet; Box 3)

Series 7: Artwork and Sketchbook, circa 1930-circa 1960 (0.2 linear feet; Box 3)

Series 8: Photographs, circa 1935-1967 (0.4 linear feet; Boxes 3-4, OV 5)
Biographical / Historical:
San Francisco contemporary jewelry designer Margaret De Patta, née Strong, was born in Tacoma, Washington in 1903 and raised in San Diego, California. She was among the first contemporary studio jewelers and a proponent of modernism. De Patta studied painting at the San Diego Academy of Fine Arts from 1921-1923, the California School of Fine Arts from 1923-1925, and the New York Art Students League from 1926-1929.

Margaret De Patta began to create jewelry when she designed her own modernist wedding ring for her marriage to Sam De Patta in 1929. By the mid-1930s, she had become an accomplished jeweler whose work was frequently shown in galleries and museums. Her jewelry was featured in the 1939 Golden Gate International Exposition in San Francisco. Around 1939, De Patta also started collaborating with Francis Sperisen, a noted San Francisco lapidary. De Patta designed the shapes of the jewelry using Lucite and wood, and Sperisen would use her models as a reference for the actual gem cutting.

From 1940-1941, De Patta attended the Chicago Bauhaus (now the Institute of Design) where she studied under Laszlo Moholy-Nagy. De Patta's time at the school was formative and Moholy-Nagy was tremendously impressed with her work. She also met her future second husband Gene Bielawski while she was a student in Chicago.

In 1941, De Patta returned to San Francisco, divorced Sam De Patta, and renovated her Laidley Street house in Glen Park. In 1946, she married Eugene Bielawski. The couple taught at the California Labor School. They also moved to Napa and founded Designs Contemporary, a business for producing jewelry that was as high quality as De Patta's handcrafted pieces at more affordable prices. Since all aspects of the business were conducted by the two of them, the workload became overwhelming and Designs Contemporary closed in 1957.

In 1951, Margaret De Patta was a founding member of the San Francisco Metal Arts Guild, established to promote the metal arts and specifically address the unique needs of studio jewelers. During her lifetime, she befriended many artists and continued to create jewelry, teach, and lecture. De Patta committed suicide in 1964. Her innovative jewelry designs continue to be influential today.
Provenance:
The Margaret De Patta papers were donated in two installments in 2003 and 2015 by Martha Bielawski, the second wife of Margaret De Patta's second husband, Eugene Bielawski. These papers were collected as part of the Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Rights:
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Occupation:
Jewelers -- California  Search this
Jewelry making -- Study and teaching  Search this
Design -- Study and teaching  Search this
Topic:
Designers -- California  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Sketchbooks
Designs
Drawings
Citation:
Margaret De Patta papers, circa 1930-2012. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.depamarg
See more items in:
Margaret De Patta papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-depamarg
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Harvey K. Littleton

Interviewee:
Littleton, Harvey K.  Search this
Interviewer:
Byrd, Joan Falconer  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
American Craft Council  Search this
Ann Arbor Potters Guild  Search this
Black Mountain College (Black Mountain, N.C.)  Search this
Corning Glass Works  Search this
Cranbrook Academy of Art -- Students  Search this
Haystack Mountain School of Crafts  Search this
Midwest Designer-Craftsmen  Search this
Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Penland School of Handicrafts  Search this
Pilchuck School  Search this
Renwick Gallery  Search this
University of Michigan -- Students  Search this
Braden, Norah, 1901-  Search this
Brown, William J. (William Joseph), 1923-1992  Search this
Dreisbach, Fritz  Search this
Eames, Charles  Search this
Eisch, Erwin, 1927-  Search this
Fredericks, Marshall M., 1908-1998  Search this
Hamada, Shōji, 1894-1978  Search this
Marioni, Dante, 1964-  Search this
Milles, Carl, 1875-1955  Search this
Turner, Robert Chapman, 1913-2005  Search this
Voulkos, Peter, 1924-2002  Search this
Extent:
36 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
2001 March 15
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Harvey K. Littleton conducted 2001 March 15, by Joan Falconer Byrd, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, in Littleton's home, Spruce Pine, N.C.
Littleton speaks of his family background including the work of his father [Jesse Talbot Littleton] at Corning Glassworks, and his early experiences with glass at Corning. He discusses his studies at the University of Michigan in physics and his switch to sculpture; his studies at Cranbrook Academy, in 1941, and his teachers Marshall Fredericks and Carl Milles; his studies on industrial design; becoming a potter; and working at Corning Glassworks, in the summers, inspecting hand-blown coffee pots and top-of-the-stove ware. He discusses his service in the 849th Signal Intelligence Unit in North Africa and Italy during WWII; studying with Norah Braden, at the Brighton School of Art, in England; the importance of, "A Potter's Book," by Bernard Leach; teaching pottery at night, in Ann Arbor, Michigan; the beginnings of the Ann Arbor Potters Guild; making his own potters' wheels; serving on the board of Penland School of Crafts; the development of "American" art and the impact of the GI Bill on the creation and expansion of art departments; the "master-slave apprentice system"; "the genius of Shoji Hamada"; the properties of porcelain; artist communities at Penland and Cranbrook; the influence of Bill Brown, director of the Penland School of Crafts; art education and the impact of the MFA; Black Mountain College, Pilchuck Glass School, and Haystack Mountain School of Crafts; problems with the European educational system; the importance of Erwin Eisch's work on his development; his relationship with galleries and museums, particularly the Museum of Modern Art, the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, and American Craft Museum; and consignment laws. He also comments on the founding of the Midwest Designer Craftsmen; his involvement with the American Crafts Council (ACC) and the distinction between "the indigenous craftsman" and the "artist-craftsman"; American Crafts Council fairs; his printmaking; his techniques of sandblasting; teaching vitreography; and his plans for opening a print gallery. He recalls Charles Eames, Peter Voulkos, Shoji Hamada, Robert Turner, Dante Marioni, Fritz Dreisbach, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Harvey K. Littleton (1922- ) is a glass artist, potter, sculptor, and printmaker from Wisconsin and Spruce Pine, N.C. Joan Falconer Byrd (1939-) ia a professor in the art department of Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, N.C.
General:
Originally recorded on 3 sound cassettes. Reformatted in 2010 as 6 digital wav files. Duration is 3 hrs., 10 min.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.
Topic:
Glass artists -- North Carolina -- Interviews  Search this
Potters -- Interviews  Search this
Pottery -- Study and teaching -- United States.  Search this
Printmakers -- North Carolina -- Interviews  Search this
Prints -- Technique  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.little01
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-little01

Trude Guermonprez collection

Creator:
Guermonprez, Trude, 1910-1976  Search this
Names:
Akron Art Institute  Search this
American Crafts Council. Museum of Contemporary Crafts  Search this
American Institute of Architects  Search this
Black Mountain College (Black Mountain, N.C.)  Search this
California College of Arts and Crafts  Search this
Cooper-Hewitt Design Archive  Search this
Holland Amerika Lijn  Search this
Johnson Wax -- Art collections  Search this
Municipal School of Arts and Crafts (Halle an der Saale, Germany)  Search this
Oakland Art Museum  Search this
Owens-Corning Fiberglas Corporation  Search this
Pasadena Art Museum  Search this
Pond Farm Workshop  Search this
San Francisco Folk Art Museum  Search this
Staatliche Galerie Moritzburg Halle, Landeskunstmuseum Sachsen-Anhalt  Search this
Guermonprez, Paul.  Search this
Guermonprez, Trude, 1910-1976  Search this
Herr, Gordon.  Search this
Herr, Jane.  Search this
Larson, Jack Lenor.  Search this
Mendelsohn, Erich, 1887-1953  Search this
Oud, J. J. P. (Jacobus Johannes Pieter), 1890-1963  Search this
Wildenhain, Frans, 1905-1980  Search this
Wildenhain, Marguerite  Search this
Extent:
3 Boxes
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Posters
Patterns (design elements)
Designs (textile)
Blueprints
Awards
Proposals
Postcards
Announcements
Brochures
Photographs
Exhibition catalogs
Slides (photographs)
Journals (periodicals)
Clippings
Financial records
Lecture notes
Articles
Business cards
Correspondence
Textiles
Sketches
Date:
1950-1976
Summary:
This archive includes interesting documents related to Trude Guermonprez's life and work as a weaver. The archives are especially related to the designer's work for her major clients, like Holland America Line and Owens Corning Fiberglass; other pieces in this archive are related to Guermonprez's work for custom curtains made for major synagogues and her designs, interior fabrics, screens and rugs realized in conjunction with J.P. Oud, Architects Associated, New York; Eric Mendelsohn, Warren Callister, etc. The correspondence and the photographs in this collection provide insight into the designer's private life. Included in this collection are press articles, brochures, correspondence, postcards, photographs, color slides, notebooks, textiles, and textile wood patterns.
Arrangement note:
Unprocessed; Included in this collection are press articles, brochures, correspondence, postcards, photographs, color slides, notebooks, textiles, and textile wood patterns.
Biographical/Historical note:
Trude Guermonprez is an experienced weaver as well as a designer, artist, craftsman and teacher. She has executed architectural commissions and has done interior design for industry. Her work is of great variety in character and form. Guermonprez started weaving in Halle, Germany at the Municipal School of Arts and Crafts. Six years of weaving in a Dutch rug shop preceded her coming to America, at the invitation of Anni Albers, to teach at Black Mountain College, and later to northern California to join her friend Marguerite Wildenhain, at Pond Farm Workshops in a producing-teaching cooperative. She served as Chairman of the Craft Department at The California College of Arts and Crafts. Though she designed fabrics for New York textile manufacturers, her works were mainly custom produced for architects and individuals. In 1970 she was honored the Craftsmanship Medal from the American Institute of Architects.

Guermonprez published works in Art and Architecture, 1949; Shuttlecraft Weaving Magazine, 1957; and Research in Crafts, 1961.

She also participated in the following exhibitions: de Young Museum; American Wallhangings, London; Oakland Art Museum; Pasadena Art Museum; U.S. Information Agency State Department Show, traveling Europe exhibition; "Craftsmen of the West", "Fabrics International" and "10 American Weavers" at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. In 2000 at Staatliche Galerie Moritzburg Halle Landeskunstmuseum, Halle (Salle), Germany: "From Bauhaus to the Pacific: The Impact of Emigration on Marguerite Wildenhain and Trude Guermonprez".
Location of Other Archival Materials Note:
The North Carolina State Archives web site has material in its collection related to Guermonprez as a teacher and artist-in-residence at Black Mountain College.
The Archives of American Art hasoral history interviews of Merry Renk conducted 2001 Jan. 18-19 by Arline M. Fisch for Nanette L. Laitman's, Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America. Guermonprez is only mentioned.
Provenance:
All materials were donated to the museum by Mr. Eric and Mrs. Sylvia Elsesser in 1993.
Restrictions:
Unprocessed; access is limited. Permission of Library Director required. Policy.
Occupation:
Textile designers -- United States  Search this
Weavers -- United States  Search this
Topic:
Weaving -- History -- 20th century -- Sources  Search this
Genre/Form:
Posters
Patterns (design elements)
Designs (textile)
Blueprints
Awards
Proposals
Postcards
Announcements
Brochures
Photographs
Exhibition catalogs
Slides (photographs)
Journals (periodicals)
Clippings
Financial records
Lecture notes
Articles
Business cards
Correspondence
Textiles
Sketches
Identifier:
SIL-CH.1993-121-118
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-sil-ch-1993-121-118

Oral history interview with J. Fred Woell

Interviewee:
Woell, J. Fred, 1934-  Search this
Interviewer:
Gold, Donna, 1953-  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
Boy Scouts of America  Search this
Cranbrook Academy of Art -- Students  Search this
Haystack Mountain School of Crafts -- Faculty  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
University of Wisconsin--Madison -- Students  Search this
Callahan, Harry M.  Search this
Extent:
75 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
2001 June 6-2002 January 19
Scope and Contents:
An interview of J. Fred Woell conducted 2001 June 6-2002 January 19, by Donna Gold, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, in the artist's home and studio, Deer Isle, Maine.
Woell speaks of his childhood and the impact of many moves; his affiliation with the Presbyterian Church; his experiences at Park College and the University of Illinois, Champagne-Urbana, studying economics and political science; and the influence of jewelry teacher Robert Von Neumann. Woell describes his experience in the masters program at the University of Wisconsin at Madison and refers again to his early childhood noting his participation in Boy Scouts and how it engendered his respect for the environment. He also mentions collecting baseball cards and rocks; the absence of a peer group; and his lack of confidence. He discusses his affinity for open space and unpopulated places; his enjoyment of camping, kayaking with his wife Pat; and notes that his views of nature mirror those of Taoists. He cites effective teaching techniques and comments on secondary school curricula. He discusses a cover story about his work in Metalsmith and his mother's response; his early art classes and interest in drawing cartoons; his tendency to be a clown; his participation in an American-Legion-sponsored event called Boys State; artists as purveyors of culture; and the premise for a workshop titled "Art by Accident." Woell speaks of influence of a John Cage performance at University of Illinois and subsequently contacting Cage; and teaching at Boston University, Haystack, and elsewhere. Woell also provides thoughtful commentary on the teaching style and learning process at Cranbrook Academy of Art. He discusses in some detail the strong influence of Vincent Campanella and Frank Gallo on his work; sharing a workbench with Bob von Neumann; recording and saving ideas; drawing preliminary sketches for jewelry; and his early sculptures of helmets and spoons. He describes and interprets his piece, "Come Alive, You're in the Pepsi Generation," and he comments on found-object pieces that were inspired by Scouting and cartooning. Woell explains how his environmental concerns inform his work and argues that art has a healing function. He remarks on meeting and marrying Kathleen, his first wife; his one-man show at Garth Clark Gallery; and how his work is part of an American, rather than international, tradition. Woell discusses his relationship with galleries including Helen Drutt in Philadelphia, Sybaris Gallery in Royal Oak, Michigan, Connell Gallery in Atlanta, and Mobilia in Cambridge, Massachusetts He points out the value of being included in publications such as, "Metalsmith," "Jewelers Circular Keystone," "Ornament," "American Craft," "Craft Horizon," and "Craft Report." He speaks about commissions for institutions and individuals and describes his current obligation to Haystack and his plans for his retirement, which includes exploring photography and making videos. Woell also describes his typical workday and his symptoms of Attention Deficit Disorder and dyslexia. He recalls Peter Voulkos, Jennifer Burton, Francis Sumner Merritt, Ronald Pearson, Georg Jensen, Audrey Handler, Jerry Brown, Jon Wilson, and others.
On January 19, 2002 Woell added an addendum to the interview which included remarks about September 11, 2001 acts of terrorism in the U.S.
Biographical / Historical:
J. Fred Woell (1934-) is a jeweler and metalsmith from Deer Isle, Maine. Donna Gold (1953-) is an art critic from Stockton Springs, Maine.
General:
Originally recorded on 6 sound cassettes. Reformatted in 2010 as 11 digital wav files. Duration is 5 hr., 43 min.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.
Topic:
Jewelers -- Maine -- Interviews  Search this
Metal-workers -- Maine -- Interviews  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.woell01
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-woell01

Oral history interview with Robert Winokur

Interviewee:
Winokur, Robert, 1933-  Search this
Interviewer:
Riedel, Mija, 1958-  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
Alfred University -- Students  Search this
Helen Drutt Gallery  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts (U.S.)  Search this
North Texas State University -- Faculty  Search this
Tyler School of Art -- Faculty  Search this
Tyler School of Art -- Students  Search this
Babu, Victor, 1936-  Search this
De Kooning, Willem, 1904-1997  Search this
Ferguson, Ken, 1928-  Search this
Giacometti, Ignazio  Search this
Hamada, Shōji, 1894-1978  Search this
Hay, Dick  Search this
Klee, Paul, 1879-1940  Search this
Kline, Franz, 1910-1962  Search this
Levy, Marge  Search this
Minter, Myrna  Search this
Notkin, Richard  Search this
Randall, Theodore, 1914-1985  Search this
Reitz, Don, 1929-2014  Search this
Rhodes, Daniel, 1911-1989  Search this
Schulman, Norman, 1924-  Search this
Staffel, Rudolf, 1911-2002  Search this
Vavrek, Ken  Search this
Voulkos, Peter, 1924-2002  Search this
Wildenhain, Marguerite  Search this
Wood, John, 1922-2012  Search this
Extent:
7 Items (Sound recording: 7 sound files (5 hr., 35 min.))
159 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Interviews
Sound recordings
Date:
2011 July 23-24
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Robert Winokur conducted 2011 July 23 and 24, by Mija Riedel, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at Winokur's home and studio, in Horsham, Pennsylvania.
Robert speaks of his mother earning an award for her artwork; his father and other family members being Communists and having to distance himself in being identified with them; his mother making ceramic jewelry while his father was working as a welder at Cramps Shipyard in Philadelphia during World War II; feeling like he had an attention deficit disorder of some kind, which prevented him from doing well in school, so he took ceramics classes in high school to bring his grades up; starting in painting at the Tyler School of Art, finishing in sculpture, clay, and ceramics; appreciating the Abstract Expressionist work of Franz Kline; of the opinion that one learns art by doing and that the teachers are there to direct you only; feeling that he did not have the freedom to experiment with clay as he wished at Alfred University, School of Art and Design for fear of being compared to Peter Voulkos; his first job teaching at North Texas State University in Denton, Texas; teaching in Peoria, Illinois for a year; beginning Cape Street Pottery in Ashfield, Massachusetts; when he began salt firing and working more in sculptural forms; his work influenced by Abstract Expressionism, Paul Klee, Willem de Kooning, Ignazio Giacometti, Zen master calligraphers, Peter Voulkos, and others; feeling that the computer cannot, as of yet, produce the quality of art that humans can through repetition; that the process of creating is more important than the subject; starting his 30-year teaching career at Tyler School of Art in 1966; that students today are approaching ceramics conceptually and academically rather than through a relationship with the material; the beginning of NCECA [National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts]; and how he enjoys making what he wants to, now that he is retired. Robert also recalls Rudolf Staffel, John Wood, Ted Randall, Daniel Rhodes, Shoji Hamada, Marguerite Wildenhain, Ken Ferguson, Norm Schulman, Victor Babu, Myrna Minter, Don Reitz, Helen Drutt English, Richard Notkin, Dick Hay, Marge Levy, and Ken Vavrek.
Biographical / Historical:
Robert Winokur (1933- ) is a ceramist in Horsham, Pennsylvania. Mija Riedel (1958- ) is an independent scholar in San Francisco, California.
General:
Originally recorded as 7 sound files. Duration is 5 hr., 35 min.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and administrators.
Topic:
Abstract expressionism  Search this
Ceramic jewelry  Search this
Ceramicists -- Pennsylvania -- Interviews  Search this
Ceramics -- Study and teaching  Search this
Communism  Search this
Painting -- Study and teaching  Search this
Sculpture -- Study and teaching  Search this
World War, 1939-1945  Search this
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Sound recordings
Identifier:
AAA.winokr11
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-winokr11

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