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Honoré Sharrer papers

Sharrer, Honoré, 1920-2009  Search this
American Academy of Arts and Letters  Search this
Forum Gallery (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Handmacher-Vogel, Inc.  Search this
Terry Dintenfass, Inc.  Search this
Women's Caucus for Art  Search this
Blume, Peter, 1906-1992  Search this
Bridaham, Lester Burbank  Search this
Caiserman-Roth, Ghitta, 1923-  Search this
Calderwood, Kathy, 1945-  Search this
Carpenter, Mary  Search this
Crutchfield, Mary  Search this
Goodwin, Betty  Search this
Kirstein, Lincoln, 1907-  Search this
Miller, Dorothy Canning, 1904-2003  Search this
Oda, Mayumi, 1941-  Search this
Poland, Reginald  Search this
Sachs, Honoré  Search this
Sharrer, Madeleine  Search this
Tooker, George, 1920-2011  Search this
Zagorin, Adam  Search this
Zagorin, Perez  Search this
9.45 Linear feet
1.12 Gigabytes
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
circa 1920-2007
The papers of realist painter, Honoré Sharrer, measure 9.45 linear feet and 1.12 GB and date from circa 1920-2007. The collection documents Sharrer's career through biographical material, personal and professional correspondence, writings and notes, research and source files, printed and digital material, artwork, sketchbooks, and photographs of Sharrer, her family, friends, colleagues, and artwork.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of realist painter, Honoré Sharrer, measure 9.45 linear feet and 1.12 GB and date from circa 1920-2007. The collection documents Sharrer's career through biographical material, personal and professional correspondence, writings and notes, research and source files, printed and digital material, artwork, sketchbooks, and photographs of Sharrer, her family, friends, colleagues, and artwork.

Biographical material includes biographical notes and resumés, awards, paintbrushes used by Sharrer, and sales records, as well as comprehensive documentation, compiled 2004-2007 by her husband, Perez Zagorin, and her son, Adam Zagorin, of Sharrer's artwork in their possession. Included are digital images of Sharrer's artwork.

Correspondence is with family members including Sharrer's mother, Madeleine Sharrer, and her second husband, Reginald Poland; husband Perez Zagorin; son Adam Zagorin; and daughter-in-law, Mary Carpenter Also found is correspondence with artists including Peter Blume, Lester Burbank Bridaham, Gitta Caiserman-Roth, Kathy Calderwood, Mary Crutchfield, Betty Goodwin, Lincoln Kirstein, Mayumi Oda, and George Tooker. Other professional correspondents include galleries, museums, and other art institutions such as American Academy of Arts and Letters, Terry Dintenfass, Forum Gallery, Handmacher-Vogel, Inc., M. Knoedler & Co., Dorothy Miller relating to the 1946 Fourteen Americans exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, and the Women's Caucus for Art.

Writings and notes comprise drafts of several essays on art by Sharrer, preliminary notes for Tribute to the American Working People, and a mock-up for an unpublished book, "One White Christmas," written by Sharrer's grandmother, Honoré Sachs, and illustrated by Sharrer.

Research and source files consist of source material used throughout the course of Sharrer's career, including printed and photographic material used in the creation of Tribute to the American Working People, and later work dating up to, and including, the last decade of her life.

Printed material comprises announcements and catalogs for exhibitions and events featuring Sharrer, including a catalog for Fourteen Americans, as well as clippings about her and others, such as the Life Magazine cover story "Nineteen Young Americans."

Artwork and sketchbooks include studies for paintings and illustrations, and other preliminary sketches, as well as 14 sketchbooks of pencil and ink sketches dating from circa 1960s t0 2003.

Photographic material consists of photos of Sharrer, her family, friends, colleagues, exhibition installations, and houses. Also found are photos, negatives, and transparencies of Sharrer's artwork, as well as photos of artwork by Madeleine Sharrer and Lester Burbank Bridaham.
The collection is arranged as 8 series.

Missing Title

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1941-2007 (0.44 linear feet; Boxes 1, 10, 1.12 GB; ER01-ER10)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1938-2006 (1.84 linear feet; Boxes 1-3, 10)

Series 3: Writings and Notes, circa 1940s-circa 1990s (5 folders; Boxes 3, 10)

Series 4: Research and Source Files, circa 1920s-2005 (3.43 linear feet; Boxes 3-6, 10-11)

Series 5: Printed Material, circa 1930s-2005 (0.85 linear feet; Boxes 6-7, 11, OV 13, OV 17)

Series 6: Artwork, 1941-circa 1990s (0.8 linear feet; Boxes 7, 11-12, OV 13

Series 7: Sketchbooks, 1960s-2003 (0.55 linear feet; Boxes 7, 12)

Series 8: Photographic Material, circa 1930s-circa 2000 (1.83 linear feet; Boxes 8-9, 12, OVs 13-16)
Biographical / Historical:
Realist painter Honoré Sharrer (1920-2009) lived and worked in New York, Massachusetts, London, Montreal and Charlottesville, Virginia. She was best known for her five-panel painting, Tribute to the American Working People, completed in 1951 and first shown at M. Knoedler & Co. in New York to wide critical acclaim.

Sharrer was born in 1920 in West Point, New York, where her father was an Army officer, and grew up in the United States, the Philippines, Paris, and La Jolla, California. She studied at the Yale University School of Art and the San Francisco Art Institute, and worked as a welder in shipyards in California and New Jersey during World War II. She moved to New York in the 1940s and lived subsequently in Amherst, Massachusetts, London, and Montreal.

Sharrer's Workers and Paintings (1943) was included in the landmark Museum of Modern Art exhibition, Fourteen Americans, in 1946, and her painting, Man at Fountain, was featured in the 1950 Life Magazine cover story, "Nineteen Young American Artists." Tribute to the American Working People, which depicted a factory worker surrounded by smaller scenes of ordinary life, was considered her masterwork, but in the years that followed it's unveiling at M. Knoedler & Co., Sharrer was noticeably absent from the art scene; between 1951 and 1969 she did not have a single solo exhibition. While many of her contemporaries immersed themselves in Abstract Expressionism, Sharrer continued to paint, in meticulous detail, the daily experiences of ordinary working people, and her later work often dealt with female perspectives and was imbued with humor and elements of magical realism.

In 2007 the Smithsonian American Art Museum held an exhibition titled Anatomy of a Painting: Honoré Sharrer's 'Tribute to the American Working People,' which was devoted exclusively to her most famous work, now in the Smithsonian's permanent collection, and the source material she used when painting it. Sharrer's works can also be found in the Metroplitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.

Sharrer settled in Charlottesville, Virginia, in the early 1990s. She was married to her second husband, historian Perez Zagorin, for 61 years, before her death in 2009. Her mother, Madeleine Sharrer, was also a painter who married Reginald Poland, Director of the Fine Arts Gallery, San Diego, following the death of Sharrer's father, Robert Allen Sharrer.
Related Materials:
Also found in the Archives of American Art is an oral history interview with Perez Zagorin, 2007, January 17-18, and the Madeleine Sharrer papers, 1954-1988.
The Honoré Sharrer papers were donated in 2006 and 2007 by Perez Zagorin, Sharrer's husband. A small addition was donated by Adam Zagorin, Sharrer's son, in 2018.
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D. C. Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
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.
Painters -- Virginia  Search this
Painters -- New York (State)  Search this
Painting -- Equipment and supplies  Search this
Realism  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Women painters  Search this
Honoré Sharrer papers, circa 1920-2007. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
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Honoré Sharrer papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art

Goddesses / Mayumi Oda

Oda, Mayumi 1941-  Search this
Oda, Mayumi 1941-  Search this
Physical description:
74 p. : ill. (chiefly col.) ; 21 cm
Goddesses in art  Search this
Buddhism and art  Search this
Call number:
NE2238.5.O26 A4 1988
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries

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