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Oral history interview with Tom Robbins

Interviewee:
Robbins, Tom  Search this
Interviewer:
Kingsbury, Martha, 1941-  Search this
Names:
Kendrick, William Philip  Search this
Newman, Barnett, 1905-1970  Search this
Pollock, Jackson, 1912-1956  Search this
Extent:
47 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1984 March 3
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Tom Robbins conducted 1984 March 3, in La Conner, Wash., by Martha Kingsbury, for the Archives of American Art's Northwest Oral History Project.
Robbins speaks of his youth; the importance of his first trips to New York; meeting Barnett Newman and William Philip Kendrick; the influence of Oriental art; his drug experience; his research on Jackson Pollock; coming to Washington State and working as an art critic; the impact of the 1962 World's Fair on art; and style versus content in art.
Biographical / Historical:
Tom Robbins (1936- ) is a writer and critic from LaConner, Wash.
General:
Originally recorded on 2 sound cassettes. Reformatted in 2010 as 4 digital wav files. Duration is 2 hr., 28 min.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives' Northwest Oral History Project, begun in 1982 to document the Northwest artistic community through interviews with painters, sculptors, craftsmen, educators, curators, and others, in Oregon, Washington and Montana.
Restrictions:
Transcript available on the Archives of American Art website.
Occupation:
Art critics -- Washington (State) -- Interviews  Search this
Topic:
Art criticism  Search this
Art, Modern -- Northwestern States  Search this
Art, American -- Northwestern States  Search this
Authors -- Washington (State) -- Interviews  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.robbin84
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-robbin84

Oral history interview with V. V. Rankine

Interviewee:
Rankine, V. V., 1920-2004  Search this
Interviewer:
Kirwin, Liza  Search this
Names:
Betty Parsons Gallery  Search this
Black Mountain College (Black Mountain, N.C.)  Search this
David Herbert Gallery  Search this
Institute of Contemporary Arts (Washington, D.C.)  Search this
Jefferson Place Gallery  Search this
Albers, Josef  Search this
Bader, Franz, 1903-1994  Search this
Brooks, James, 1906-1992  Search this
Callahan, Harry M.  Search this
Cunningham, Merce  Search this
Davis, Gene, 1920-1985  Search this
De Kooning, Elaine  Search this
De Kooning, Willem, 1904-1997  Search this
Denney, Alice  Search this
Dorrance, Nesta  Search this
Downing, Thomas, 1928-1985  Search this
Duncan, Augustin  Search this
Fuller, R. Buckminster (Richard Buckminster), 1895-1983  Search this
Gabo, Naum, 1890-1977  Search this
Gilliam, Sam, 1933-  Search this
Gorky, Agnes  Search this
Gorky, Arshile, 1904-1948  Search this
Graham, John, 1887-1961  Search this
Guston, Philip, 1913-1980  Search this
Halle, Kay  Search this
Hare, David, 1917-1992  Search this
Helburn, Theresa, 1887-1959  Search this
Johnson, Ray, 1927-1995  Search this
Kennedy, Kit  Search this
Kiesler, Frederick  Search this
Kinney, Gilbert H.  Search this
Krasner, Lee, 1908-1984  Search this
Lassaw, Ibram, 1913-2003  Search this
Leopold, Richard  Search this
Louis, Morris, 1912-1962  Search this
Magruder, Esther  Search this
Merrill, Kevin  Search this
Nelson, Wretha  Search this
Nevelson, Louise, 1899-1988  Search this
Newman, Bonnie  Search this
Noland, Kenneth, 1924-2010  Search this
Ozenfant, Amédée, 1886-1966  Search this
Pace, Stephen, 1918-2010  Search this
Parsons, Betty  Search this
Penn, Arthur, 1922-  Search this
Phillips, Duncan, 1886-1966  Search this
Pollock, Jackson, 1912-1956  Search this
Rauschenberg, Robert, 1925-2008  Search this
Renault, Jean  Search this
Richman, Robert  Search this
Russo, Alexander  Search this
Sheridan, Walt  Search this
Sherman, Saul  Search this
Snelson, Kenneth, 1927-2016  Search this
Soyer, Moses, 1899-1974  Search this
Soyer, Raphael, 1899-1987  Search this
Sweeney, James Johnson, 1900-  Search this
Thomas, Dylan, 1914-1953  Search this
Truitt, Anne, 1921-2004  Search this
Warhol, Andy, 1928-1987  Search this
Yektai, Manoucher, 1922-  Search this
Youngerman, Jack, 1926-2020  Search this
Extent:
34 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1990 Mar. 2-22
Scope and Contents:
An interview of V. V. Rankine conducted 1990 Mar. 2-22, by Liza Kirwin, for the Archives of American Art.
Rankine discusses the evolution of her nickname, V.V.; discovering her dyslexia; growing up in Boston; auditioning for a part in, "The Philadelphia Story"; her art studies with Amedee Ozenfant from 1944 to 1946; her studies at Black Mountain College with Josef Albers and Willem De Kooning in 1947; her friendship with Morris Louis and watching him work; living with her brother-in-law Arshile Gorky, in New York City; her first one-woman show at the David Herbert Gallery in New York in 1962; exhibiting at the Betty Parsons Gallery in New York and at the Jefferson Place Gallery in Washington, D.C.; Robert Richman and the Institute of Contemporary Arts; the relationship between her painting and her sculpture; favorite shapes and materials; and her summer home in East Hampton and artist friends there. Rankine also recalls Robert Rauschenberg, Jack Youngerman, Manoucher Yektai, Betty Parsons, Ibram Lassaw, Buckminster Fuller, Elaine De Kooning, Arthur Penn, Richard Leopold, John Cage, Merce Cunningham, Ken Noland, Morris Louis, Ray Johnson, Kenneth Snelson, David Hare, Frederick Kiesler, Raphael Soyer, Moses Soyer, Jean Renault, Agnes Gorky, Esther Magruder, James Johnson Sweeney, Jim Brooks, John Graham, Phillip Guston, Duncan Phillips, Theresa Helburn, Augustine Duncan, Tom Downing, Gene Davis, Alice Denney, Nesta Dorrance, Kevin Merrill, Sam Gilliam, Dylan Thomas, Kay Halle, Kit Kennedy, Naum Gabo, President Lyndon B. Johnson, Anne Truitt, Wretha Nelson, Franz Bader, Louise Nevelson, Andy Warhol, Jackson Pollock, Bonnie Newman, Alexander Russo, Walt Sheridan, Gilbert Kinney, Saul Sherman, Steve Pace, Lee Krasner, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
V.V. Rankine (1920-2004) was a painter and sculptor from Washington, D.C. Variable forms of the artist's name are notably E. R. (Elvine Richard) Rankine, Vivian Scott Rankine, and her married name, Mrs. Paul Scott.
General:
Originally recorded on 3 sound cassettes. Reformatted in 2010 as 5 digital wav files. Duration is 2 hrs., 53 min.
Provenance:
These interviews are 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 others.
Occupation:
Painters -- Washington (D.C.) -- Interviews  Search this
Topic:
Art, American  Search this
Sculptors -- Washington (D.C.) -- Interviews  Search this
Women artists -- Washington (D.C.)  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.rankin90
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-rankin90

Charles Pollock papers

Creator:
Pollock, Charles C.  Search this
Names:
Pollock, Jackson, 1912-1956  Search this
Extent:
3.1 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Sketches
Cartoons (humorous images)
Date:
1875-1994
Summary:
The papers of painter, muralist, and educator Charles Pollock measure 3.1 linear feet and date from 1875 to 1994. Found within the papers are biographical materials; family and personal correspondence; subject files on art and professional topics; writings; printed material; artwork, including political cartoons and figurative sketches; and photographs of Pollock, his family and friends, and his work.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of painter, muralist, and educator Charles Pollock measure 3.1 linear feet and date from 1875 to 1994. Found within the papers are biographical materials; family and personal correspondence; subject files on art and professional topics; writings; printed material; artwork, including political cartoons and figurative sketches; and photographs of Pollock, his family and friends, and his work.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 7 series.

Series 1: Biographical Materials, 1945-1988 (7 folders; Box 1)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1927-1994 (1 linear foot; Boxes 1-2)

Series 3: Subject Files, 1931-1988 (0.8 linear feet; Box 2)

Series 4: Writings, 1935-1965 (2 folders; Box 2)

Series 5: Printed Material, 1930-1990 (4 folders; Box 2)

Series 6: Artwork, 1925-1949 (0.7 linear feet; Box 3, OV 5-8)

Series 7: Photographic Materials, 1875-1987 (0.4 linear feet; Boxes 3-4)
Biographical / Historical:
Painter, muralist, and educator Charles Pollock (1902-1988) lived and worked in East Lansing, Michigan, New York City, Detroit, and Paris, France and painted in a social realist style early in his career before transitioning to abstract works in the 1940s. He is also the eldest brother of the abstract expressionist Jackson Pollock.

Born in Denver, Colorado to Stella McClure and LeRoy Pollock, Pollock received his early art training at the Otis Institute in Los Angeles, California. In 1926, he moved to New York City to attend the Art Students League where he studied under Thomas Hart Benton, with whom Jackson also studied after joining Charles in New York in 1930. In New York, he met and married his first wife, Elizabeth Feinberg Pollock, in 1931.

Pollock moved to Washington, D.C. in 1935 to work for the Resettlement Administration, and after two years, accepted a position as the political illustrator for the United Automobile Workers' newspaper in Detroit. After a short stint as the illustrator and layout editor for the paper, Pollock served as the supervisor of the Michigan WPA Mural Painting and Graphic Arts division from 1938 to 1942.

Upon completion of a three panel mural for Michigan State University in 1942, Pollock was invited to join the faculty of the art department, where he taught lettering, printmaking, typography, and design. During his twenty-five year tenure at the University, he also served as a book designer for the University's Press and continued to develop his abstract painting style. He met and married his second wife, Sylvia Winter Pollock, in 1957. Pollock served as the University of Pennsylvania's artist in residence in 1965 and 1967, and was the recipient of a National Foundation of Arts Grant (1967) and a Guggenheim Grant (1967-1968). The Pollocks moved to Paris in 1970, where Charles died of complications from a stroke in 1988.
Related Materials:
Also found in the Archives of American Art are the Elizabeth Feinberg Pollock memoirs and the Jackson Pollock and Lee Krasner papers.
Separated Materials:
Nine works of art included in the 1975 gift from Elizabeth Pollock were transferred to the Smithsonian American Art Museum, formerly the National Collection of Fine Arts, in 1976.
Provenance:
The papers were donated in 1975 by Pollock's first wife, Elizabeth Feinberg Pollock, with assistance from Charles Pollock on the selection of items. Additional materials were donated in 1988 by his second wife, Sylvia Winter Pollock. From 1991 to 1994, Elizabeth Pollock gifted additional correspondence and photographs to the Archives.
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 Charles Pollock papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Occupation:
Art teachers -- France  Search this
Muralists -- France -- Paris  Search this
Muralists -- Michigan  Search this
Painters -- Michigan  Search this
Topic:
Art teachers -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Muralists -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Art teachers -- Michigan  Search this
Painters -- France -- Paris  Search this
Painters -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Expatriate painters -- France -- Paris  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Sketches
Cartoons (humorous images)
Citation:
Charles Pollock papers, 1875-1994. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.pollchar
See more items in:
Charles Pollock papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-pollchar
Online Media:

Jackson Pollock and Lee Krasner papers

Creator:
Pollock, Jackson, 1912-1956  Search this
Krasner, Lee, 1908-1984  Search this
Names:
Betty Parsons Gallery  Search this
Martha Jackson Gallery  Search this
Benton, Thomas Hart, 1889-1975  Search this
Brooks, James, 1906-1992  Search this
Burkhardt, Rudy  Search this
Cavaliere, Barbara  Search this
Davis, Bill  Search this
De Kooning, Willem, 1904-1997  Search this
Dehner, Dorothy, 1901-1994  Search this
Eames, Ray  Search this
Forge, Andrew  Search this
Friedman, B. H. (Bernard Harper), 1926-  Search this
Glaser, Jane R.  Search this
Gray, Cleve  Search this
Greenberg, Clement, 1909-1994  Search this
Gruen, John  Search this
Holmes, Doloris  Search this
Isaacs, Reginald R., 1911-  Search this
Janis, Sidney, 1896-  Search this
Johnson, Philip, 1906-2005  Search this
Kadish, Reuben, 1913-1992  Search this
Maddox, Charles  Search this
Matter, Mercedes  Search this
McCoy, Sanford, Mrs.  Search this
Miller, Daniel  Search this
Miller, Robert, 1932 Apr. 17-  Search this
Motherwell, Robert  Search this
Namuth, Hans  Search this
Ossorio, Alfonso, 1916-1990  Search this
Pollock, Charles C.  Search this
Pollock, Jackson, 1912-1956 -- Photographs  Search this
Rose, Barbara  Search this
Rouche, Burton  Search this
Smith, Tony, 1912-  Search this
Still, Clyfford, 1904-  Search this
Valliere, James  Search this
Wasserman, Tamara E.  Search this
Wright, William  Search this
Zogbaum, Wilfrid, 1915-1965  Search this
Extent:
16.1 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Motion pictures (visual works)
Video recordings
Photographs
Interviews
Sound recordings
Scrapbooks
Sketchbooks
Transcripts
Date:
circa 1914-1984
bulk 1942-1984
Summary:
The papers of abstract expressionist painters Jackson Pollock and wife Lee Krasner measure 16.1 linear feet and date from circa 1914 to 1984, with the bulk of the material dating from 1942 to 1984. The collection documents their personal and professional lives, as well as the legacy of Jackson Pollock's work after his death. Found are biographical material, correspondence, writings by Krasner and others, research material, business and financial records, printed material, scrapbooks, artwork by others, photographs, interview transcripts, audio and video recordings, and motion picture film.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of abstract expressionist painters Jackson Pollock and wife Lee Krasner measure 16.1 linear feet and date from circa 1914 to 1984, with the bulk of the material dating from 1942 to 1984. The collection documents their personal and professional lives, as well as the legacy of Jackson Pollock's work after his death. Found are biographical material, correspondence, writings by Krasner and others, research material, business and financial records, printed material, scrapbooks, artwork by others, photographs, interview transcripts, audio and video recordings, and motion picture film.

The collection is divided into two series, the first of which focuses on Pollock and includes his scattered papers dating from circa 1914 to his death in 1956, as well as Krasner's papers dating from his death to 1984 about managing Pollock's legacy. This series includes biographical materials, including transcripts and audio recordings of an interview with William Wright in 1949; Pollock's and Krasner's correspondence with Thomas Hart Benton, Betty Parsons Gallery, Bill Davis, B. H. Friedman, Reginald Isaacs, Sidney Janis, Violet De Lazlo, Martha Jackson Gallery, Alfonso Ossorio, Tony Smith, and Clyfford Still, and with one another; Krasner's correspondence concerning Pollock's estate and artwork after his death; numerous writings about Pollock, including an original draft of Bryan Robertson's biography and an essay by Clement Greenberg.

James Valliere extensive research files on Pollock for a never-published biography were given to Krasner and filed in Series 1. These include scattered correspondence with Lee Krasner, and Pollock's family and friends, including Charles Pollock, Thomas Hart Benton, and Robert Motherwell. There are also transcripts of interviews Valliere conducted with Pollock's friends and colleagues, including James Brooks, Dorothy Dehner, Clement Greenberg, Reuben Kadish, Lee Krasner, Charles Maddox, Mrs. Sanford McCoy, Daniel T. Miller, Robert Miller, and Tony Smith. The original audio reels and duplicates exist for many and are filed here. Additional interviews were conducted with Willem de Kooning, Alfonso Ossorio, and Burton Rouche, but not transcribed - these are filed in Series 1.10, Audio Recordings and Motion Picture Film.

Also found in Series 1 are scattered business records documenting Krasner's handling of Pollock's estate and legacy; printed materials relating to Pollock, including published biographies, exhibition catalogs, and clippings; two scrapbooks; and a sketchbook by an unidentified artist. Numerous photographs of Pollock include childhood and family photographs, photographs of Pollock in his studio by Hans Namuth, Rudy Burckhardt, and Herbert Matter, photographs of Pollock with Lee Krasner, and exhibition photographs. Audio recordings and motion film in Series 1 include a 1964 16mm film about Pollock (VHS copies are available) and reel-to-reel recordings of untranscribed interviews of Pollock's friends and colleagues by James Valliere, including interviews with Willem de Kooning and Alfonso Ossorio. Additional transcribed interviews are filed in subseries 1.4.

Lee Krasner's papers documenting her own career are arranged in Series 2 and date from 1927-1984. Biographical materials include resumes and awards, school documents, family documentation, and exhibition lists. Her correspondence with artist friends and art colleagues is extensive and includes many letters from artists such as Philip Johnson, Ray Eames, Cleve Gray, and Hans Namuth. She also maintained correspondence with many art historians and critics, curators, gallery owners, collectors, arts-related and social organizations, admirers, and family members.

There are thirteen transcripts of interviews with Krasner by Bruce Glaser, Barbara Cavaliere, Andrew Forge, Emily Wasserman, Barbara Rose, and others. The original audio recordings for these transcripts are filed in series 2.10, along with other audio recordings for which there are no transcripts, including interviews by John Gruen, Delores Holmes, Mercedes Matter, the Martha Dean Radio Show, NBC Today Show, and WQXR radio. There are also audio recordings of Krasner's lectures in series 2.10.

Krasner's papers also include writings and reminiscences by Krasner; writings about Krasner; printed materials such as exhibition catalogs and clippings; and one scrapbook containing clippings and photographs. Numerous photographs are of Krasner, including portrait photographs taken by Hans Namuth; of Krasner with Jackson Pollock and family and friends, and of her exhibitions and artwork.

Users should note that Pollock's and Krasner's papers contain similar types of material that often overlap in subject matter, especially among the correspondence and photographs.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into 2 series:

Series 1: Jackson Pollock papers and Lee Krasner papers about Jackson Pollock, circa 1914-1984 (Box 1-7, 16, OV 18, FC 19-22; 7.4 linear feet)

Series 2: Lee Krasner papers, circa 1927-1984 (Box 7-15, 17; 8.6 linear feet)
Biographical Note:
Jackson Pollock was born in 1912, in Cody, Wyoming, the youngest of five sons. His family moved several times during his childhood, finally settling in Los Angeles. In 1930 he joined his older brother, Charles, in New York City, and studied with Regionalist painter Thomas Hart Benton at the Art Students League of New York. Pollock worked during the 1930s for the Works Progress Administration's Federal Art Project. During 1936 he worked in artist David Alfaro Siqueiros's Experimental Workshop. In 1938 he began psychiatric treatment for alcoholism, and his artwork was greatly influenced by Jungian analysis and the exploration of unconscious symbolism.

In 1943 Pollock had his first one-man exhibition at Peggy Guggenheim's New York gallery, Art of this Century, and continued to exhibit there over the next several years. A major turning point in Pollock's life and art was in 1945 when he married fellow artist Lee Krasner and moved to East Hampton, Long Island. There he developed his mature painting style, and became famous for his abstract pouring technique on large canvases. The height of his creativity spanned from 1947 to 1952, and his work was promoted by art critic Clement Greenberg. Along with other abstract expressionists including Hans Hofmann, Alfonso Ossorio, and Barnett Newman, he joined the Betty Parsons Gallery in 1947. He had his most successful one-man show in 1950 which was widely publicized and praised. This exhibition, combined with a 1949 feature article in LIFE magazine, made Pollock an American celebrity.

In 1952 Pollock moved his work to Sidney Janis Gallery and returned to earlier motifs in a search for new breakthroughs. The last few years of his life he suffered from mental and physical health problems, and in August, 1956 he died in a car accident. His wife, Lee Krasner, oversaw his estate and worked with many museums, including the Museum of Modern Art, on Pollock retrospective exhibitions.

Lee Krasner was born Lenore Krassner in 1908 in Brooklyn, New York to Russian immigrant parents. In 1926 she was admitted to the Women's Art School of The Cooper Union, and in 1928 she attended the Art Students League. After graduating from The Cooper Union in 1929, she attended the National Academy of Design until 1932. After briefly attending City College and Greenwich House, she worked for the Public Works of Art Project and the Temporary Emergency Relief Administration, and finally became an assistant in 1935 on the WPA Federal Art Project, Mural Division. From 1937 to 1940 she studied at the Hans Hofmann School of Fine Arts and began exhibiting with the American Abstract Artists group.

In 1942 Krasner met Pollock as they were both preparing to exhibit work in the same show. Although they married and she became immersed in his career, she continued to exhibit her own work with other abstract artists and from 1946 to 1949 worked on the Little Image painting series. In 1953 she began working on collages, a medium she would come back to again later in her career. After Pollock's death her work was greatly influence by her sadness and anger, creating a visible evolution of her style.

For the rest of her career, Krasner consistently exhibited her work in both group and solo exhibitions. She had her first retrospective at Whitechapel Gallery, London, in 1965, and in 1966, she joined Marlborough Gallery, New York which represented Pollock's work as well. In the 1970s and early 1980s Krasner won many awards for her achievement in the visual arts, including the Augustus St. Gaudens Medal and the Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres. She returned to the medium of collage, and in 1976 joined the Pace Gallery, New York. In 1981 she joined the Robert Miller Gallery, New York. Lee Krasner continued creating art until her death in 1984.
Related Material:
Found in the Archives of American Art are the Charles Pollock Papers, 1902-1990, which includes correspondence, photographs, and other files relating to his brother, Jackson Pollock. Other resources in the Archives are oral history interviews with Lee Krasner, including a series of interviews conducted by Dorothy Seckler between 1964 and 1968, and interviews conducted by Barbara Rose in 1966 and Doloris Holmes in 1972.
Provenance:
The papers of Jackson Pollock were donated in 1983 by Lee Krasner through Eugene V. Thaw shortly before her death. Additional material about Pollock and the papers of Lee Krasner were donated in 1985 by Eugene V. Thaw, executor of Lee Krasner's estate.
Restrictions:
The collection has been digitized and is available online via AAA's website.
Rights:
The Jackson Pollock and Lee Krasner papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Occupation:
Painters -- New York (State)  Search this
Topic:
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Abstract expressionism  Search this
Genre/Form:
Motion pictures (visual works)
Video recordings
Photographs
Interviews
Sound recordings
Scrapbooks
Sketchbooks
Transcripts
Citation:
Jackson Pollock and Lee Krasner papers, circa 1914-1984. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.polljack
See more items in:
Jackson Pollock and Lee Krasner papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-polljack
Online Media:

Jackson Pollock and Lee Krasner papers, circa 1914-1984, bulk 1942-1984

Creator:
Pollock, Jackson, 1912-1956  Search this
Krasner, Lee, 1908-1984  Search this
Subject:
Greenberg, Clement  Search this
Cavaliere, Barbara  Search this
Davis, Bill  Search this
De Kooning, Willem  Search this
Dehner, Dorothy  Search this
Pollock, Jackson  Search this
Eames, Ray  Search this
Forge, Andrew  Search this
Friedman, B. H. (Bernard Harper)  Search this
Glaser, Jane R.  Search this
Benton, Thomas Hart  Search this
Brooks, James  Search this
Burkhardt, Rudy  Search this
Rouche, Burton  Search this
Rose, Barbara  Search this
Namuth, Hans  Search this
Motherwell, Robert  Search this
Pollock, Charles C.  Search this
Ossorio, Alfonso  Search this
Zogbaum, Wilfrid  Search this
Wright, William  Search this
Still, Clyfford  Search this
Smith, Tony  Search this
Wasserman, Tamara E.  Search this
Valliere, James  Search this
Isaacs, Reginald R.  Search this
Janis, Sidney  Search this
Johnson, Philip  Search this
Kadish, Reuben  Search this
Gray, Cleve  Search this
Gruen, John  Search this
Holmes, Doloris  Search this
Matter, Mercedes  Search this
McCoy, Sanford, Mrs.  Search this
Miller, Daniel  Search this
Miller, Robert  Search this
Maddox, Charles  Search this
Betty Parsons Gallery  Search this
Martha Jackson Gallery  Search this
Type:
Motion pictures (visual works)
Video recordings
Photographs
Interviews
Sound recordings
Scrapbooks
Sketchbooks
Transcripts
Topic:
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Abstract expressionism  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)8943
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211129
AAA_collcode_polljack
Theme:
Art Movements and Schools
Women
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211129
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Sidney Gordin

Interviewee:
Gordin, Sidney, 1918-1996  Search this
Interviewer:
Seckler, Dorothy Gees, 1910-1994  Search this
Names:
Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art -- Students  Search this
Pratt Institute -- Faculty  Search this
Harrison, Wallace, 1900-  Search this
Hofmann, Hans, 1880-1966  Search this
Jewell, Edward Alden, 1888-1947  Search this
Kantor, Morris, 1896-1974  Search this
Picasso, Pablo, 1881-1973  Search this
Pollock, Jackson, 1912-1956  Search this
Rosenborg, Ralph M., 1913-1992  Search this
Thomas, Byron, 1902-1978  Search this
Extent:
23 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1965 Sept. 2
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Sidney Gordin conducted 1965 Sept. 2, by Dorothy Seckler, for the Archives of American Art.
Gordin speaks of immigrating to the United States from Shanghai, China in 1922; being the class artist in grade school; attending Brooklyn Technical High School; studying at the WPA art school at the Brooklyn Museum for a summer; attending the Cooper Union School of Art; encountering Cubism; working as a commercial artist and making cartoons; teaching at the Pratt Institute; and alternating, as inspiration strikes, between painting and sculpture; and Constructivist philosophy. Gordin also mentions Ralph Rosenborg, Tom Eldred, Carol and Wallace Harrison, Edward Alden Jewell, Pablo Picasso, Byron Thomas, Morris Kantor, Hans Hofmann, Paul Clay, Jackson Pollock, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Sidney Gordin (1918-1996) was a sculptor and educator from Berkeley, Calif.
General:
Originally recorded on 1 sound tape. Reformatted in 2010 as 2 digital wav files. Duration is 1 hr., 1 min.
Provenance:
These interviews are 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 others.
Occupation:
Painters -- California -- Berkeley  Search this
Topic:
Art, American  Search this
Art teachers -- California -- Berkeley -- Interviews  Search this
Sculptors -- California -- Berkeley -- Interviews  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.gordin65
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-gordin65

Harry Bowden papers

Creator:
Bowden, Harry, 1907-1965  Search this
Names:
American Abstract Artists  Search this
Bransom, Paul, 1885-  Search this
Campbell, Charles, 1905-  Search this
Cunningham, Imogen, 1883-1976  Search this
De Kooning, Willem, 1904-1997  Search this
Hirsch, Hy  Search this
Hobbs, Fredric  Search this
Hofmann, Hans, 1880-1966  Search this
Huxley, Aldous, 1894-1963  Search this
Johnson, Robert E. (Robert Emory), 1932-  Search this
Krasner, Lee, 1908-1984  Search this
McNeil, George, 1908-1995  Search this
Onslow-Ford, Gordon  Search this
Pollock, Jackson, 1912-1956  Search this
Post, George, 1906-1997  Search this
Reinhardt, Ad, 1913-1967  Search this
Schevill, James Erwin, 1920-  Search this
Smith, Hassel, 1915-2007  Search this
Steichen, Edward, 1879-1973  Search this
Weston, Brett  Search this
Weston, Edward, 1886-1958  Search this
White, Minor  Search this
Extent:
2 Linear feet ((on 4 microfilm reels))
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Date:
1922-1972
Scope and Contents:
Correspondence, photographs, writings, sketches, drawings, paintings, and printed material.
REELS 1880-1882: Extensive correspondence with Bowden's wife, Lois; letters from Paul Bransom, Imogen Cunningham, Hi Hirsch, Hans Hofmann, Robert Johnson, George McNeil, George Post, James Schevill, Hassel Smith, Brett Weston, and Edward Weston; notes and writings on photography and art; sketches, drawings, and paintings; business papers and business correspondence from museum and gallery directors including Edward Steichen, Fred Hobbs, Charles Campbell, Minor White, and others; catalogs, clippings, and other printed materials.
REEL 1885: Ca. 500 photographs, mostly by Bowden, including photos of George Abend, Al and Frances Bernstein, Richard and Pat Bowman, M. Carles, Walter Chabrow, Imogen Cunningham, Willem de Kooning, Vic and Jeanne Di Suvero, Loyola and Ed Fourtane, Mrs. Gibson, Grabhorn, Robinson Jeffers, Aristodemos Kaldis, Lee Krasner, Darius Milhaud, Gordon Onslow-Ford, Phylis and Bob Pauey, Jackson Pollock's studio, Otis Oldfield, George Post, Kenneth Price, Ad Reinhardt, Kenneth Rexroth, Serge Trubach, Edward and Brett Weston, Yvor Winters, Wilfred Zogbaum, and Aldous Huxley. Also included are photographs Bowden, Bowden's family, his wife, Lois, nudes, his works, and exhibits.
Biographical / Historical:
Painter and photographer; San Francisco, California. Studied with Hans Hofmann; founding member of the American Abstract Artists and was associated with the Artists' Gallery; photography influenced by Edward Weston.
Provenance:
Lois Bowden, Harry Bowden's widow, donated the greater part of this collection to the Archives of American Art via Charles Campbell of the Charles Campbell Gallery, San Francisco, Calif. Mr. Campbell subsequently donated 28 additional photographs.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Microfilmed materials must be consulted on microfilm. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Occupation:
Painters -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Photographers -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Painters -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Photographers -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Topic:
Photography, Artistic -- California -- San Francisco  Search this
Painting, Abstract -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Identifier:
AAA.bowdharr
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-bowdharr

Oral history interview with Albert Christ-Janer

Interviewee:
Christ-Janer, Albert, 1910-1973  Search this
Interviewer:
Seckler, Dorothy Gees, 1910-1994  Search this
Names:
Cranbrook Academy of Art  Search this
Benton, Thomas Hart, 1889-1975  Search this
Curry, John Steuart, 1897-1946  Search this
Pollock, Jackson, 1912-1956  Search this
Wood, Grant, 1891-1942  Search this
Extent:
7 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1964 March 21
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Albert Christ-Janer conducted by Dorothy Seckler 1964 March 21 for the Archives of American Art.
Christ-Janer speaks of the regionalist movement in painting in the 1930s, of Thomas Hart Benton, John Steuart Curry and Grant Wood; teaching at the Cranbrook Academy of Design; and he recalls Jackson Pollock.
Biographical / Historical:
Albert Christ-Janer (1910-1973) was a painter, printmaker, museum director, educator, and writer in Athens, Georgia.
General:
Originally recorded on 2 sound tape reels. Reformatted in 2010 as 2 digital wav files. Duration is 1 hr., 21 min.
Provenance:
These interviews are 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 others.
Restrictions:
Transcript: Patrons must use microfilm copy.
Occupation:
Painters -- Georgia -- Athens -- Interviews  Search this
Topic:
Art, American  Search this
Authors -- Georgia -- Athens -- Interviews  Search this
Educators -- Georgia -- Athens -- Interviews  Search this
Museum directors -- Georgia -- Athens -- Interviews  Search this
Printmakers -- Georgia -- Athens -- Interviews  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.christ64
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-christ64

Oral history interview with Thomas Hart Benton

Interviewee:
Benton, Thomas Hart, 1889-1975  Search this
Interviewer:
Cummings, Paul  Search this
Names:
Craven, Thomas, b. 1889  Search this
Ingram, Rex, 1895-1969  Search this
Macdonald-Wright, Stanton, 1890-1973  Search this
Pollock, Jackson, 1912-1956  Search this
Reed, Alma M.  Search this
Robinson, Boardman, 1876-1952  Search this
Stieglitz, Alfred, 1864-1946  Search this
Weichsel, John, 1870-1946  Search this
Extent:
68 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1973 July 23-24
Scope and Contents:
Interview of Thomas Hart Benton conducted 1973 July 23-24, by Paul Cummings, for the Archives of American Art. Benton speaks of his childhood in Missouri and Washington, D.C., working as a newspaper cartoonist, and classes at the Chicago Art Institute (1907-1908) and the Academie Julian in Paris (1908). He discusses the New York art world, painting scenes for silent movies, the "Stieglitz Society," the synchromist and regionalist movements, John Weichsel and the People's Art Guild, teaching at the Art Students League and the Kansas City Art Institute, murals and mural techniques, lithographic illustrations, drawings, and World War II propaganda posters. He recalls Thomas Craven, Rex Ingram, Stanton Macdonald-Wright, Jackson Pollock, Alma Reed, Boardman Robinson, and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Thomas Hart Benton (1889-1975) was a painter and mural painter.
General:
Originally recorded on 2 sound tape reels. Reformatted in 2010 as 4 digital wav files. Duration is 3 hr., 46 min.
Provenance:
These interviews are 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 others.
Restrictions:
ACCESS RESTRICTED; written permission required.
Occupation:
Painters -- Interviews  Search this
Topic:
Mural painting and decoration -- 20th century  Search this
Regionalism in art  Search this
Synchromism (Art)  Search this
Muralists -- Interviews  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.benton73
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-benton73

Oral history interview with Robert Beverly Hale

Interviewee:
Hale, Robert Beverly, 1901-1985  Search this
Interviewer:
Brown, Robert F.  Search this
Names:
Art Students League (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Columbia University -- Students  Search this
Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Barr, Alfred H., Jr., 1902-1981  Search this
Bridgman, George Brant, 1864-1943  Search this
Coyle, Terence  Search this
Duchamp, Marcel, 1887-1968  Search this
Geldzahler, Henry  Search this
Hirshhorn, Joseph H.  Search this
Huxley, Julian, 1887-1975  Search this
Klonis, Stewart, 1901-1989  Search this
McNulty, William Charles, 1884-1963  Search this
Peirce, Waldo, 1884-1970  Search this
Pollock, Jackson, 1912-1956  Search this
Priest, Alan Reed  Search this
Rockefeller, David, 1915-  Search this
Root, Edward Wales, d. 1956  Search this
Rorimer, James J. (James Joseph), 1905-1966  Search this
Russell, Bertrand, 1872-1970  Search this
Extent:
23 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1984 Mar. 7
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Robert Beverly Hale conducted 1984 Mar. 7, by Robert F. Brown, for the Archives of American Art.
Hale speaks of his childhood years living a bohemian life; personal and family friend Marcel Duchamp; his time as a student at the Columbia School of Architecture; being a biology student at Columbia University; studying painting in Paris at Fontainebleau; assisting Waldo Pierce as a secretary; the gold medal from the American Poetry Society; running the publicity department of the Arts Students League; connection to the Metropolitan Museum of Art; Art News magazine critic in 1930s; tenure in the American wing of the Met; friend Jackson Pollack and the art scene at East Hampton; discussion of drawing the planes of the human body; and writing a book on figure drawing. Hale also recalls Bertrand Russell, Julian Huxley, Henry Oliver Walker, Phil Wiley, George Bridgman, William McNulty, Stuart Klonis, Sam Lewis, Edward Root, Walter Baker, Joseph Hirshhorn, Alan Priest, Albert Gardner, Henry Geldzahler, James Rorimer; David Rockefeller, Alfred Barr, and Terrance Coyle.
Biographical / Historical:
Robert Beverly Hale (1901-1985) was an administrator, instructor, and art historian from New York, N.Y.
General:
Originally recorded on 1 sound cassette. Reformatted in 2010 as 2 digital wav files. Duration is 1 hr., 7 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 others.
Topic:
Arts administrators -- New York (State) -- New York -- Interviews  Search this
Art teachers -- Interviews  Search this
Drawing -- Technique  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.hale84
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-hale84

Cleve Gray papers

Creator:
Gray, Cleve  Search this
Names:
Berry-Hill Galleries  Search this
Betty Parsons Gallery  Search this
Connecticut. Commission on Arts, Tourism, Culture, History and Film  Search this
Jacques Seligmann & Co  Search this
Neuberger Museum of Art  Search this
Pratt Institute  Search this
Princeton University  Search this
Rhode Island School of Design  Search this
Barzun, Jacques  Search this
Calder, Alexander, 1898-1976  Search this
Davis, Jim, 1901-1974  Search this
Dillenberger, Jane  Search this
Duchanp, Marcel, 1887-1968  Search this
Ernst, Jimmy, 1920-1984  Search this
Gabo, Naum, 1890-1977  Search this
Grace, Louise N.  Search this
Gray, Francine du Plessix  Search this
Lipchitz, Jacques, 1891-1973  Search this
Marin, John, 1870-1953  Search this
Pollock, Jackson, 1912-1956  Search this
Richter, Hans, 1888-1976  Search this
Smith, David, 1906-1965  Search this
Villon, Jacques, 1875-1963  Search this
Weber, Nicholas Fox, 1947-  Search this
Extent:
9.2 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Poems
Articles
Photographs
Reviews (documents)
Notes
Illustrations
Notebooks
Sketches
Drafts (documents)
Video recordings
Sound recordings
Interviews
Manuscripts
Paintings
Prints
Watercolors
Drawings
Lectures
Date:
1933-2005
Summary:
The Cleve Gray papers, 1933-2005, measure 9.2 linear feet. Papers include biographical material, alphabetical files, writings, artwork, audio/visual records, artifacts, printed material, and photographs. Extensive alphabetical files contain personal and professional correspondence as well as subject files relating to projects and interests. Especially well-documented are: Gray's involvement with the Vietnam protest movement; and Threnody, his best-known work composed of fourteen large panels lamenting the dead of both sides sides in Vietnam, commissioned by the Neuberger Museum of Art.
Scope and Content Note:
The Cleve Gray papers, 1933-2005, measure 9.2 linear feet. Papers include biographical material, alphabetical files, writings, artwork, audio/visual records, artifacts, printed material, and photographs. Extensive alphabetical files contain personal and professional correspondence as well as subject files relating to projects and interests. Especially well-documented are: Gray's involvement with the Vietnam movement; and Threnody, his best-known work composed of fourteen large panels lamenting the dead of both sides sides in Vietnam, commissioned by the Neuberger Museum of Art.

Among the biographical material are award and membership certificates, biographical notes, and personal documentation.

The alphabetical files contain Cleve Gray's personal and professional correspondence, as well as subject files relating to projects and interests. Correspondence is with friends and family, colleagues, publishers, museum curators and directors, art dealers, collectors, and fans. Among the correspondents of note are: Jacques Barzun, James E. Davis, Naum Gabo, Louise N. Grace, Hans and Fridel Richter, and Jacques and Gaby Villon. Other substantial correspondence includes: Berry-Hill Galleries, Betty Parsons Gallery, Connecticut Commission on the Arts, Jacques Seligmann and Co., Neuberger Museum of Art, Pratt Institute, Princeton University, and Rhode Island School of Design. Subject files mostly consist of correspondence, but include printed material and some photographs. Among the subject files are: Art Collection of Cleve and Francine Gray, Artist-Dealer Consignments and Visual Artists' Rights Act of 1989, Artists' Tax Equity Act of 1979, Promised Gifts to Museums, Threnody, Vestments, and Vietnam Protest. Of particular interest are files relating to the Estate of Hans Richter (Cleve Gray, executor), and Gray's research correspondence and illustrations for his Cosmopolitan article "Women-Leaders of Modern Art."

Writings are manuscripts and drafts, research materials, notes, and miscellaneous writings by Cleve Gray and other authors. Those by Gray include articles and catalog introductions on a wide range of art-related topics, as well as book and exhibition reviews. Also found are a book proposal, texts and notes for lectures and talks, miscellaneous notes, poems, political statements, and student papers. Of particular interest are autobiographical notes in the form of a chronology that his biographer, Nicholas Fox Weber, cited as an "autochronology."

Among the writings by other authors are pieces about Cleve Gray including Nicholas Fox Weber's manuscript Cleve Gray. A significant amount of material relates to three books edited by Gray: David Smith by David Smith: Sculpture and Writings, Hans Richter, and John Marin. Research material survives for an unpublished volume, Naum Gabo. Also included are notes relating to his translation of A l'Infinitif by Marcel Duchamp. Jane Daggett Dillenberger is represented by a lecture, "The Resurrection in Art." The remaining items by other authors are unsigned; of particular interest is a small notebook of reminiscences and notes about Jackson Pollock.

Artwork by Cleve Gray consists mostly drawings and sketches, and a small number of paintings, prints, and watercolors. Works by other artists consist are an unsigned mobile of paper cut-outs, possibly by Alexander Calder, and a pencil drawing signed Dick (probably Richard Avedon).

Audio recordings are a radio broadcast featuring Cleve Gray, several lectures by Gray on John Marin, and a lecture titled "Meaning in the Visual Arts." Other recordings are of Hans Richter and an interview with Jimmy Ernst conducted by Francine du Plessix Gray. Also found is a videocassette of "Glenville School Students at SUNY (Lincoln Center Activity)."

Artifacts are a Chinese scroll representative of those that hung in Cleve Gray's studio, two of his paintbrushes, Aberdeen-Angus Breeders' Association blue ribbon, and Neuberger Museum of Art Lifetime Achievement Award.

The vast majority of printed material - articles, clippings, exhibition catalogs and announcements, reproductions of art work, etc. - are about or by Cleve Gray. Miscellaneous items and publications mentioning Gray consist of annual reports, brochures, calendars, newsletters, programs, etc. Clippings about Vietnam and Vietnam protest memorabilia reflect his passionate involvement in the anti-war movement; a small number of these items mention Gray or were written by him.

Photographs are of artwork, events, people, places, and miscellaneous subjects. Most of the art work appearing in the photographs is by Cleve Gray and includes images of destroyed paintings. Also found is an original print of Photo Abstraction by Gray, circa 1934. Of particular note are photographs of Threnody, among them preparatory drawings and views of the work in progress. Photographs of artwork by other artists include Louise N. Grace, Jacques Lipchitz, John Marin, Hans Richter, and Jacques Villon.

Photographs of people are mainly portraits of Gray, and views of him with his wife and sons. Other individuals appearing in photographs are Hans Richter and some of Richter's descendants. Pictures of places consist of Gray's studio.

Events are an unidentified exhibition opening. Miscellaneous subjects are mostly exhibition installations. Illustrations consist of photographs published in David Smith by David Smith: Sculpture and Writings. Also found are small number of negatives and color transparencies.
Arrangement:
The collection is organized into 8 series:

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1943-circa 2001 (Box 1; 0.1 linear ft.)

Series 2: Alphabetical Files, 1936-2005 (Boxes 1-5, 9; 4.3 linear ft.)

Series 3: Writings, 1935-2000 (Boxes 5-6; 0.85 linear ft.)

Series 4: Artwork, circa 1933-1987 (Boxes 6, 9, OV 12; 0.45 linear ft.)

Series 5: Audio/Visual Records, 1971-1989 (Box 6; 0.25 linear ft.)

Series 6: Artifacts, 1957-1999 (Box 6, RD 11; 0.45 linear ft.)

Series 7: Printed Material, 1933-2005 (Boxes 7-8; 1.25 linear ft.)

Series 8: Photographs, circa 1934-2002 (Boxes 8-10; 1.15 linear ft.)
Biographical Note:
Abstract Expressionist painter, sculptor, and writer Cleve Gray (1918-2004) lived and worked in Connecticut where he was politically active in the Vietnam protest movement and other liberal causes.

Born Cleve Ginsberg in New York City (the family changed its name to Gray in 1936), he attended the Ethical Culture School and at a young age developed a fascination with color and paint. At the urging of friends, Cleve's parents allowed him to accompany a school friend for lessons with George Bellows' student Antonia Nell. She encouraged and inspired the young artist, and a still life he painted in her class was shown at the National Academy of Design's 1932 annual exhibition. Miss Nell also introduced him to Louise N. Grace, an artist who became a good friend and had a lasting influence on him. While a student at Phillips Academy, Cleve studied painting with Bartlett Hayes and aspired to paint in France. Upon his graduation in 1936, he was awarded the Samuel F. B. Morse Prize for most promising art student.

Gray's mother was always supportive of his career choice. His businessman father, who didn't understand his son's desire to be an artist, insisted on a college education. Cleve chose Princeton, where he majored in art and archaeology, and studied painting with James E. Davis. His senior thesis was on Chinese landscape painting; both Eastern philosophy and art were long-term influences on Gray's work and outlook. He graduated summa cum laude in 1940, and then spent several months painting while living at the farm of a family friend in Mendham, New Jersey.

When a doctor suggeted that a dry climate might relieve sinus and asthma problems, Gray moved to Tucson, Arizona. Once settled in the desert, he contacted Louise N. Grace, whom he had met as a young teenager through his art instructor. Miss Grace, an artist and daughter of the founder of W. R. Grace and Co., was a highly cultured and independent woman older than his parents. The summer before Gray entered Phillips Academy, she had hired him to brush ground color onto canvases for murals she was painting for "Eleven Arches," her home in Tuscon then under construction. Miss Grace invited Gray to visit "Eleven Arches" to see the completed murals, and despite the substantial age difference, their friendship deepened; Gray found in her intellectual and spiritual guidance that was lacking in his own family. He remained in Tucson until enlisting in the U. S. Army in 1942, and they corresponded frequently during the the war. When a stroke in 1948 prevented Miss Grace from participating in the extensive tour of Europe she was arranging for a small group of friends, including Gray, she provided sufficient funds and insisted he make the trip on his own. Another stroke, suffered while Gray was traveling, left her in a coma; he was not permitted to see her again. Upon her death in 1954, Gray inherited "Eleven Arches."

Between 1943 and 1946, Gray was stationed in England, France, and Germany, serving in Army Signal Intelligence. Most of his work was performed at night, and he spent his free time drawing. While in London, Gray produced many colored pencil drawings of buildings that had been bombed. In France, a Red Cross volunteered to introduce him to Jacques Villon; although unfamiliar with the artist, Gray knew of Villon's brother, Marcel Duchamp, and accepted the invitation. Jacques and Gaby Villon lived near Gray's billet and he became a frequent visitor. Their friendship was important to his development as an artist. After being discharged from the Army in 1946, Gray remained in France to work with Villon who introduced him to the study of color and the concept of intellectual quality in painting. Gray also studied informally with André Lhote, Villon's former teacher. "American Painters in Paris," an exhibition presented in 1946 at Galerie Durand-Ruel, included work by Cleve Gray.

He returned to New York City in 1946. In the tight post-war rental market Gray managed to find a small room upstairs from a grocery store on East 106th Street for use as a studio. He commenced painting the London Ruins series based on drawings he had made during the war, and began thinking about exhibiting in New York. Gray secured introductions to Pierre Matisse, Curt Valentin, and Dorothy Miller. They encouraged him, but no opportunities came his way until Germain Seligmann, whose gallery was expanding its scope to include contemporary art, followed the advice of Curt Valentin and looked at Gray's work. Gary's first solo exhibition, held at Jacques Seligmann and Co., included selections from the London Ruins series, paintings done in Maine and Arizona, and a few portraits. The New York Times called it "an auspicious first," and one of the London Ruins series was selected by Edward Alden Jewell for the "Critic's Exhibition" at Grand Central Gallery.

Gray found New York City too frenetic. In 1949 he bought a large, old house in Warren, Connecticut, and lived and worked at "Graystones" for the remainder of his life. Half of a 6-car garage was converted to a studio; many years later, his studio moved to a barn, its renovation and design planned by sculptor and architect Tony Smith.

He married Francine du Plessix in 1957. Always interested in literature and philosophy, in the 1960s Francine du Plessix Gray began contributing articles to The New Yorker and is still affiliated with the magazine. Her reviews and articles appeared in prominent publications, and she wrote several award-winning novels and biographies. Their sons, Thaddeus and Luke (now a painter), were born in 1959 and 1961. Francine's mother, Tatiana du Plessix (the hat designer Tatiana of Saks), and step-father, the sculptor Alexander Liberman (also former art director of Vogue and later editorial director of Condé Nast publications) became Cleve Gray's closest friends.

The paintings and drawings of Cleve Gray - first consisting of figures and portraits, and then abstract compositions - were often produced in series. The earliest series, London Ruins, grew from the colored pencil drawings made while stationed in London during World War II. Travels to France, Italy, Greece, Morocco, Hawaii, Spain, Egypt, Japan, and Czechoslovakia, inspired many series, among them: Etruscan, Augury, Ceres, Demeter Landscape, Hera, Morocco, Hawaii, Ramses, Perne, Hatshepsut, Roman Walls, Zen, and Prague. His hometown, the Holocaust, and musicians inspired other series: Warren, Sleepers Awake!, Bela Bartok, and Four Heads of Anton Bruckner. Some series were works on paper, others were collage canvases, and a few series later spawned prints. Gray began using acrylics in the 1940s. Although the medium offered many benefits, he did not always like its appearance and frequently returned to oils. Around 1966 Gray was painting almost exclusively with acrylic, and eventually developed a technique of thinning the paint and applying successive layers of color (sometimes by pouring or with a sponge) on cotton duck rather than traditional canvas.

Gray was attracted to sculpture, too, working in that medium at different points in his career. His first sculpture, in plaster, was completed in 1959. In the early 1960s he visited a commercial sand-casting foundry and became excited about learning to cast in bronze. He made about a dozen sculptures to cast in sand, but due to too much undercutting, their casting became too difficult a problem. Lava flows seen while in Hawaii during 1970 and 1971 inspired a return to sculpture. This time, he used wood, papier maché, and metal. Gray then decided these pieces should be cast in bronze, and he was determined to do it himself. Friends taught him the lost wax process and he began working at the Tallix Foundry in Peekskill, New York where, over the next year, he cast about forty bronzes.

Gray's best known work is Threnody, a lament for the dead of both sides in Vietnam. In 1972, Gray received a commission to fill a very large gallery of the soon-to-open Neuberger Museum of Art (State University of New York, College at Purchase) designed by Philip Johnson. Friends of the Neuberger Museum paid his expenses and Gray, who was enormously excited about the project he considered a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, donated his time. Developing plans for the execution of Threnody consumed most of his time during 1972 and 1973. Composed of a series of fourteen panels, each approximately twenty feet square, the piece presented a number of technical challenges. It was constructed and painted in situ during the summer and early fall of 1973. Since then, Threnody has been reinstalled at the Neuberger Museum of Art on several occasions.

Gray was commissioned to design liturgical vestments for two Episcopal churches in Connecticut in the 1970s. A chasuble, stoles, and a mitre were commissioned by the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut in 1984.

He won the "Outdoor Art at the Station Competition," for Union Station, Hartford, Connecticut. His very large porcelain enamel tile mural, Movement in Space, was installed on the façade of the transportation center in 1988.

Gray began writing occasional articles and exhibition reviews in the late 1940s. His concern with rational structure in art led him to question Abstract Expressionism and write "Narcissus in Chaos." This article, published in 1959 by The American Scholar, drew considerable attention. In 1960, Cosmopolitan published "Women - Leaders of Modern Art" that featured Nell Blaine, Joan Brown, Elaine de Kooning, Helen Frankenthaler, Sonia Gretchoff, Grace Hartigan, Ethel Magafan, Louise Nevelson, and Georgia O'Keeffe. Between 1960 and 1970, Gray was a contributing editor of Art In America, producing numerous articles (a few co-authored with Francine) and reviews for the periodical. He edited three books, David Smith by David Smith: Scupture and Writings, Hans Richter, and John Marin, all published by Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, and translated Marcel Duchamp's A l'Infinitif.

During the early 1960s, Gray became intensely focused on the situation in Vietnam. His first artistic response came in 1963 with Reverend Quan Duc, painted to commemorate a Buddhist monk who had immolated himself. Francine, too, felt strongly about the issue and over time the couple became increasingly active in the anti-war movement. They joined a number of organizations and helped to found a local chapter of Clergy and Laymen Concerned about Vietnam. The years 1968 and 1969 were an especially intense and active period for the Grays. They protested, wrote and spoke out against the war, raised funds to support anti-war political candidates, and on a few occasions were arrested and jailed. Writing for Art in America, editing the book series, and anti-war activities left little time for his art. In 1970 Gray refocused his attention on painting.

Beginning in 1947, Gray was always represented by a New York Gallery: Jacques Seligmann and Co. (1947-1959), Staempfli Gallery (1960-1965), Saidenberg Gallery (1965-1968), Betty Parsons Gallery (1968-1983), Armstrong Gallery (1984-1987), and Berry-Hill Galleries (1988-2003). He was represented by galleries in other cities, as well, but not as consistently or for such long periods.

He exhibited extensively in group and solo exhibitions throughout the United States and internationally. In addition to numerous solo exhibitions presented by the dealers who represented Gray, there were retrospective exhibitions at: Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Brooklyn Museum, Columbus Museum of Art, Krannert Art Museum (University of Illinois, Champaign), Princeton University Art Museum, Rhode Island School of Design, and Wadsworth Atheneum.

Many museums' permanent collections include the work of Cleve Gray, among them: Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Butler Institute of American Art, Columbus Museum of Art, Neuberger Museum of Art (SUNY, College at Purchase), the Museum of Modern Art (New York), Newark Museum, Oklahoma City Museum of Art, Phillips Collection, Sheldon Memorial Art Gallery (University of Nebraska, Lincoln), Smithsonian Institution, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Whitney Museum of American Art, and Yale University Art Gallery.

Cleve Gray served as artist-in-residence at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art in 1963 and at the Honolulu Academy of Arts in 1970, both sponsored by Ford Foundation programs. In 1980, he was appointed an artist-in-residence at the American Academy in Rome, where Francine concurrently served as a writer-in-residence; they returned for shorter periods during each of the subsequent seven years. Cleve Gray was presented the Connecticut Arts Award in 1987, and the Neuberger Museum of Art Lifetime Achievement Award in 1999. He was awarded an honorary degree by the University of Hartford in 1992, and was elected a member of The American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1998. In addition, he was a trustee of the Neuberger Museum of Art, New York Studio School, Rhode Island School of Design, and Wadsworth Atheneum.

Cleve Gray hit his head and suffered a massive subdural hematoma after falling on ice outside of his home. He died the following day, December 8, 2004.
Separated Material:
Exhibition catalogs and announcements and two scrapbooks donated to the Archives in 1967 and 1968 were microfilmed on reels D314-D315. Items on reel D315, transferred to the Smithsonian American Art Museum Library in 1975, are not described in this finding aid.
Provenance:
The Cleve Gray papers were donated to the Archives of American Art by Mr. Gray in 1967 and 1968. The bulk of the collection was given by his widow, Francine du Plessix Gray, in 2007 and 2008.
Restrictions:
Use of original material requires an appointment. Use of archival audiovisual recordigs with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
Rights:
The Cleve Gray papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Occupation:
Painters  Search this
Topic:
Women artists  Search this
Art, Modern -- 20th century -- United States  Search this
Women artists -- Photographs  Search this
Vietnamese Conflict, 1961-1975 -- Protest Movements -- United States  Search this
Sculptors  Search this
Designers  Search this
Genre/Form:
Poems
Articles
Photographs
Reviews (documents)
Notes
Illustrations
Notebooks
Sketches
Drafts (documents)
Video recordings
Sound recordings
Interviews
Manuscripts
Paintings
Prints
Watercolors
Drawings
Lectures
Citation:
Cleve Gray papers, 1933-2005. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.grayclev
See more items in:
Cleve Gray papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-grayclev

Jackson Pollock: artist file, [photographs]

Artist:
Pollock, Jackson 1912-1956  Search this
Physical description:
1 folder
Type:
Photograph
Artist files
Topic:
Art, American  Search this
Image number:
VFM VF002332
See more items in:
Photograph Archives
Data Source:
Photograph Archives, Smithsonian American Art Museum
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_jul_140971

Untitled (Figure) [painting] / (photographed by Walter Rosenblum)

Artist:
Pollock, Jackson 1912-1956  Search this
Photographer:
Rosenblum, Walter 1919-2006  Search this
Type:
Photograph
Date:
Ca. 1944
Topic:
New Gallery  Search this
Abstract  Search this
Image number:
ROS R0004506
See more items in:
Photograph Archives
Data Source:
Photograph Archives, Smithsonian American Art Museum
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_jul_133942

Untitled [drawing] / (photographed by Walter Rosenblum)

Artist:
Pollock, Jackson 1912-1956  Search this
Photographer:
Rosenblum, Walter 1919-2006  Search this
Type:
Photograph
Date:
Ca. 1947
Topic:
New Gallery  Search this
Abstract  Search this
Image number:
ROS R0004516
See more items in:
Photograph Archives
Data Source:
Photograph Archives, Smithsonian American Art Museum
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_jul_133952

Constellation [painting] / (photographed by Walter Rosenblum)

Artist:
Pollock, Jackson 1912-1956  Search this
Photographer:
Rosenblum, Walter 1919-2006  Search this
Type:
Photograph
Date:
1946
Topic:
New Gallery  Search this
Abstract  Search this
Image number:
ROS R0004532
See more items in:
Photograph Archives
Data Source:
Photograph Archives, Smithsonian American Art Museum
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_jul_133968

Troubled Queen [painting] / (photographed by Walter Rosenblum)

Artist:
Pollock, Jackson 1912-1956  Search this
Photographer:
Rosenblum, Walter 1919-2006  Search this
Type:
Photograph
Date:
Ca. 1945
Topic:
New Gallery  Search this
Abstract  Search this
Image number:
ROS R0004565
See more items in:
Photograph Archives
Data Source:
Photograph Archives, Smithsonian American Art Museum
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_jul_134001

Vortex [painting] / (photographed by Walter Rosenblum)

Artist:
Pollock, Jackson 1912-1956  Search this
Photographer:
Rosenblum, Walter 1919-2006  Search this
Type:
Photograph
Date:
Ca. 1947
Topic:
E. V. Thaw & Co., Inc  Search this
Image number:
ROS R0005126
See more items in:
Photograph Archives
Data Source:
Photograph Archives, Smithsonian American Art Museum
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_jul_134562

Number 16, 1951 [painting] / (photographed by Peter A. Juley & Son)

Artist:
Pollock, Jackson 1912-1956  Search this
Type:
Photograph
Date:
1951
Topic:
Abstract  Search this
Image number:
JUL J0096588
See more items in:
Photograph Archives
Data Source:
Photograph Archives, Smithsonian American Art Museum
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_jul_96589

Number 30, 1949 [painting] / (photographed by Peter A. Juley & Son)

Title:
Birds of Paradise [painting] / (photographed by Peter A. Juley & Son)
Artist:
Pollock, Jackson 1912-1956  Search this
Type:
Photograph
Date:
1949
Topic:
Abstract  Search this
Image number:
JUL J0089999
See more items in:
Photograph Archives
Data Source:
Photograph Archives, Smithsonian American Art Museum
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_jul_90000

Untitled (sea-Landscape) [painting] / (photographed by Peter A. Juley & Son)

Artist:
Pollock, Jackson 1912-1956  Search this
Type:
Photograph
Date:
1936
Topic:
Landscape--Coast  Search this
Architecture exterior  Search this
Image number:
JUL J0090000
See more items in:
Photograph Archives
Data Source:
Photograph Archives, Smithsonian American Art Museum
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_jul_90001

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