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Oral history interview with Leo Rabkin, 1968 Dec. 4

Interviewee:
Rabkin, Leo, 1919-2015  Search this
Rabkin, Leo, 1919-2015  Search this
Interviewer:
Cummings, Paul, 1933-1997  Search this
Subject:
Baziotes, William  Search this
Reinhardt, Ad  Search this
American Abstract Artists  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Sculptors -- United States -- Interviews  Search this
Painters -- New York (State) -- Interviews  Search this
Sculptors -- New York (State) -- New York -- Interviews  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)13120
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)212462
AAA_collcode_rabkin68
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_212462

Esphyr Slobodkina papers, circa 1925-1995

Creator:
Slobodkina, Esphyr, 1908-2002  Search this
Bolotowsky, Ilya, 1907-1981  Search this
Slobodkina, Esphyr, 1908-2002  Search this
Subject:
Morris, George L. K.  Search this
Eckstein, Ruth  Search this
Kelpe, Paul  Search this
Rabkin, Leo  Search this
Tedlie, Harry  Search this
American Abstract Artists  Search this
Type:
Photographs
Topic:
Sculptors -- New York (State)  Search this
Women artists -- New York  Search this
Authors -- New York  Search this
Illustrators -- New York (State)  Search this
Painting, Abstract -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Theme:
Women  Search this
Lives of American Artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)9411
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211609
AAA_collcode_slobesph
Theme:
Women
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211609
Online Media:

Louis Alexander Gallery records, 1961-1963

Creator:
Louis Alexander Gallery (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Louis Alexander Gallery (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Subject:
Copley, Alfred L.  Search this
Coates, Ross  Search this
DuBack, Charles S.  Search this
Rabkin, Leo  Search this
Packard, David  Search this
Giles, William  Search this
Zagharias, Athos  Search this
Theme:
The Art Market  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)5684
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)208519
AAA_collcode_louialex
Theme:
The Art Market
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_208519

Dorothy and Leo Rabkin papers, 1940-1979

Creator:
Rabkin, Leo, 1919-2015  Search this
Rabkin, Dorothy, 1922-2008  Search this
Rabkin, Leo, 1919-2015  Search this
Subject:
Barnet, Will  Search this
Bolotowsky, Ilya  Search this
American Abstract Artists  Search this
Fine Arts Federation of New York  Search this
International Artists Association  Search this
Type:
Interviews
Topic:
Art -- Societies, etc. -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Art -- Collectors and collecting -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Theme:
The Art Market  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)5780
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)208619
AAA_collcode_rabkleo
Theme:
The Art Market
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_208619

American Abstract Artists records, 1936-1983

Creator:
American Abstract Artists  Search this
American Abstract Artists  Search this
Subject:
Archipenko, Alexander  Search this
Mondrian, Piet  Search this
Holtzman, Harry  Search this
Rabkin, Leo  Search this
Hasegawa, Saburō  Search this
Albers, Josef  Search this
Billings, Henry  Search this
Gurin, Ruth  Search this
Mason, Alice Trumbull  Search this
Rousseau, Irene  Search this
Calder, Alexander  Search this
Feininger, Lyonel  Search this
Type:
Photographs
Topic:
Art -- Societies, etc. -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Sculptors  Search this
Art, Abstract -- United States  Search this
Theme:
The Art Market  Search this
Art Movements and Schools  Search this
Lives of American Artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)9533
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211732
AAA_collcode_amerabst
Theme:
The Art Market
Art Movements and Schools
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211732
Online Media:

Rabkin, Leo

Collection Creator:
Slobodkina, Esphyr, 1908-2002  Search this
Bolotowsky, Ilya, 1907-1981  Search this
Container:
Box 1, Folder 17
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
circa 1970-1990
Collection 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.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Esphyr Slobodkina papers, circa 1925-1995. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Esphyr Slobodkina papers
Esphyr Slobodkina papers / Series 1: Correspondence
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-slobesph-ref36

Rabkin, Leo

Collection Creator:
Slobodkina, Esphyr, 1908-2002  Search this
Bolotowsky, Ilya, 1907-1981  Search this
Container:
Box 1, Folder 54
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1961-1979
Collection 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.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Esphyr Slobodkina papers, circa 1925-1995. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Esphyr Slobodkina papers
Esphyr Slobodkina papers / Series 5: American Abstract Artists / 5.2: Correspondence
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-slobesph-ref75

Rabkin, Leo

Collection Creator:
Henri Gallery (Washington, D.C.)  Search this
Container:
Box 38, Folder 2
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1965, undated
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Henri Gallery records, circa early 1900s, 1940-1996, bulk 1957-1995. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Henri Gallery records
Henri Gallery records / Series 2: Alphabetical Files / 2.1: Name Files
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-henrgall-ref851

Rabkin, Leo

Collection Creator:
Tremaine, Emily Hall, 1908-1987  Search this
Container:
Box 5, Folder 36
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1965-1972
Collection Restrictions:
This collection is open for research. Access to original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center.

Researchers interested in accessing audiovisual recordings in this collection must use access copies. Contact References Services for more information.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Emily Hall Tremaine papers, circa 1890-2004. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Emily Hall Tremaine papers
Emily Hall Tremaine papers / Series 4: Artist Files
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-trememil-ref228

Rabkin, Leo

Collection Creator:
Gertrude Kasle Gallery (Detroit, Mich.)  Search this
Container:
Box 4, Folder 16
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1964-1980
Collection Restrictions:
The collection is open for research. Use requires an appointment.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
The Gertrude Kasle Gallery records, 1949-1999 (bulk 1964-1983). Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Gertrude Kasle Gallery records
Gertrude Kasle Gallery records / Series 1: Artist Files
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-gertkasl-ref139

Rabkin Leo (Lights in Orbit show)

Collection Creator:
Howard Wise Gallery  Search this
Container:
Box 5, Folder 56
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1967
Collection Restrictions:
The collection is open for research. Use requires an appointment. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Howard Wise Gallery records, 1943-1969. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Howard Wise Gallery records
Howard Wise Gallery records / Series 2: Artist Files
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-howawisg-ref324

Rabkin, Leo-Weiner, Ellen

Collection Creator:
Marilyn Pearl Gallery  Search this
Container:
Box 7, Folder 8
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1990-1992
Scope and Contents note:
Rabkin, Leo

Robin, Stephen

Weiner, Ellen
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Marilyn Pearl Gallery records, 1925-2000. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Marilyn Pearl Gallery records
Marilyn Pearl Gallery records / Series 3: Business Records / Inventory Cards-Returned to Artist
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-maripeag-ref358

Pearson, Henry-Weiner, Ellen

Collection Creator:
Marilyn Pearl Gallery  Search this
Container:
Box 7, Folder 12
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1984-1992
Scope and Contents note:
Pearson, Henry

Peer, Linda

Rabkin, Leo

Robin, Stephen

Stella, Frank

von Wiegand, Charmion

Weiner, Ellen
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Marilyn Pearl Gallery records, 1925-2000. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Marilyn Pearl Gallery records
Marilyn Pearl Gallery records / Series 3: Business Records / Inventory Cards-Sold
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-maripeag-ref366

R

Collection Creator:
Parsons, Betty  Search this
Container:
Box 58, Folder 30
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1942-1980
Scope and Contents:
Rabkin, Leo; Robinson, Arthur; Rockefeller, Mary C.; Roosevelt, Eleanor; Root, E. W.; Rosenblatt, Russell, John and Cleve Gray;
Series Restrictions:
Researchers interested in accessing audiovisual recordings in this collection must use access copies. Contact References Services for more information.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Betty Parsons Gallery records and personal papers, 1916-1991. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Betty Parsons Gallery records and personal papers
Betty Parsons Gallery records and personal papers / Series 7: Betty Parsons Personal Papers / 7.3: Correspondence / 7.3.1: General Correspondence
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-parsbett-ref3235

Rabkin, Leo and Dorothy

Collection Creator:
Truman, Jock, 1920-  Search this
Container:
Box 1, Folder 39
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1971-1998
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to Archives' Washington D.C. center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Jock Truman papers, 1852-2011. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Jock Truman papers
Jock Truman papers / Series 2: Correspondence
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-trumjock-ref40

Rabkin, Leo -- Rivers, Haywood Bill

Collection Creator:
Miller, Dorothy Canning, 1904-2003  Search this
Container:
Box 6, Folder 36
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1961-1983
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Dorothy C. Miller papers, 1853-2013, bulk 1920-1996. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Dorothy C. Miller papers
Dorothy C. Miller papers / Series 2: Correspondence and Subject Files / R, Miscellaneous
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-milldoro-ref294

Rabkin, Leo

Collection Creator:
Byron Gallery  Search this
Container:
Box 8, Folder 37
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1963-1964
Collection Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Collection 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.
Collection Citation:
Byron Gallery records, circa 1950s-1991, bulk 1960-1971. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Byron Gallery records
Byron Gallery records / Series 1: Artist/Subject Files
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-byrogall-ref296

American Abstract Artists records

Creator:
American Abstract Artists  Search this
Names:
Albers, Josef  Search this
Archipenko, Alexander, 1887-1964  Search this
Billings, Henry, 1901-  Search this
Calder, Alexander, 1898-1976  Search this
Feininger, Lyonel, 1871-1956  Search this
Gurin, Ruth  Search this
Hasegawa, Saburō, 1906-1957  Search this
Holtzman, Harry  Search this
Mason, Alice Trumbull, 1904-1971  Search this
Mondrian, Piet, 1872-1944  Search this
Rabkin, Leo  Search this
Rousseau, Irene  Search this
Extent:
1.6 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Date:
1936-1983
Summary:
The records of the American Abstract Artists measure 1.6 linear feet and date from 1936 through 1983. The records document the founding of the organization in 1936, membership activities, general administration, and exhibitions via correspondence, member writings, financial and legal records, printed materials, and photographs.
Scope and Contents:
The records of the American Abstract Artists measure 1.6 linear feet and date from 1936 through 1983. The records document the founding of the organization in 1936, membership activities, general administration, and exhibitions via correspondence, member writings, financial and legal records, printed materials, and photographs.

Correspondence mainly relates to the exhibitions and member activities of the American Abstract Artists. There are letters from Josef Albers, Alexander Archipenko, Alexander Calder, Lyonel Feininger, Harry Holtzman, Piet Mondrian, and Irene Rousseau, President Emeritus of the American Abstract Artists. Official bulletins sent to members are also found among the correspondence.

Administrative records include founding prospectus, meeting minutes, lists of members, and drafts and amendments to the American Abstract Artists constitution.

Member writings are by Saburo Hasegawa, Henry Billings, Leo Rabkin, and Ruth Gurin. Financial and legal records include ledger books, insurance documents, and other financial material. Printed materials include announcements for the American Abstract Artists' annual exhibitions, as well as exhibition posters. Finally, there are two photographs of collage paintings by members.
Arrangement:
The arrangement and description in this finding aid refer to unmicrofilmed portions of the collection. Legacy microfilm arrangement is not reflected.

The collection is arranged as 6 series.

Series 1: Correspondence, 1937-1982 (Box 1; 0.3 linear feet)

Series 2: Administrative Records, 1937-1982 (Box 1; 0.3 linear feet)

Series 3: Member Writings, 1938-1954 (Box 1; 4 folders)

Series 4: Financial and Legal Records, 1942-1983 (Box 1-2; 0.5 linear feet)

Series 5: Printed Materials, 1936-1982 (Box 2-3, OV 4; 0.5 linear feet)

Series 6: Photographs, 1963 (Box 3; 1 folder)
Biographical / Historical:
The American Abstract Artists group was established in 1936 in New York, New York by a group of painters and sculptors. The American Abstract Artists contributed to the introduction of abstract art to the American public through exhibitions, publications, and lectures.

During the era of the formation of the American Abstract Artists, abstraction was not critically accepted. In 1937, the American Abstract Artists held their first exhibition at the Squibb Galleries in New York City. It received negative reactions from both the press and the public - the exhibition had a high attendance but poor reviews. The American Abstract Artists addressed the role of the critic through their publications, specifically the 1940 pamphlet "The Art Critics! How Do They Serve the Public? What Do They Say? How Much Do They Know?—Let's Look at the Record!"

The group was most active from 1937 to 1942, and supported the critical success of Abstract Expressionism in later decades.
Related Materials:
Among the holdings of the Archives of American Art are the Ruth Bowman Interviews of American Abstract Art members, 1963-1965, and Susan C. Larsen's Interviews of American Abstract Art members, 1973-1978.
Separated Materials:
The Archives of American Art also holds microfilm of material lent for microfilming available on 35 mm microfilm reels D539, N59-11, N69-72, N69-96, N69-97, N69-137, and N70-48. Much of this material and the papers on reels N70-48 and N59-11 were included in subsequent gifts, and may have been microfilmed again. Loaned materials not donated later are not described in the collection container inventory.
Provenance:
The Archives of American Art acquired the American Abstract Artists records in three installments by Presidents Emeriti of the American Abstract Artists. Alice Trumball Mason first lent papers for microfilming in 1959, and she later gifted the majority of this material in 1969. Following, Leo Rabkin donated records in 1969, and Irene Rousseau gave more papers in 1983.
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.
Occupation:
Painters  Search this
Topic:
Art -- Societies, etc. -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Sculptors  Search this
Art, Abstract -- United States  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Citation:
The American Abstract Artists records, 1936-1983. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.amerabst
See more items in:
American Abstract Artists records
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-amerabst
Online Media:

Esphyr Slobodkina papers

Creator:
Slobodkina, Esphyr, 1908-2002  Search this
Bolotowsky, Ilya, 1907-1981  Search this
Names:
American Abstract Artists  Search this
Eckstein, Ruth, 1916-  Search this
Kelpe, Paul, 1902-1985  Search this
Morris, George L. K., 1905-1975  Search this
Rabkin, Leo  Search this
Tedlie, Harry  Search this
Extent:
1.9 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Photographs
Date:
circa 1925-1995
Summary:
The papers of painter, sculptor, author, and illustrator Esphyr Slobodkina measure 1.9 linear feet and date from circa 1925 to 1995. Found within the papers are personal and professional correspondence, including letters from Ilya Bolotowsky, George L.K. Morris, and Paul Kelpe; writings, including a copy of the autobiography Notes for a Biographer (vol. 1); printed materials; photographs; and material on the American Abstract Artists, including administrative records, business correspondence, and publications.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of painter, sculptor, author, and illustrator Esphyr Slobodkina measure 1.9 linear feet and date from circa 1925 to 1995. Found within the papers are personal and professional correspondence, including letters from Ilya Bolotowsky, George L.K. Morris, and Paul Kelpe; writings, including a copy of the autobiography Notes for a Biographer (vol. 1); printed materials; photographs; and material on the American Abstract Artists, including administrative records, business correspondence, and publications.

Correspondence is primarily with Slobodkina's family, friends, and business associates. The series includes significant correspondence from her first husband, Ilya Bolotowsky, as well as abstract artists George L.K. Morris, Paul Kelpe, Ruth Eckstein, Leo Rabkin, and Harry Tedlie. The series also includes correspondence regarding her published works.

Writings consist of 3 essays by Slobodkina on abstract art, the autobiography Notes for a Biographer (vol. 1), the edited folio Ilya Bolotowsky, and a small notebook kept by Ilya Bolotowsky during the 1920s-30s.

Printed material includes clippings; samples of announcements and cards designed by Slobodkina; exhibition announcements and catalogs; and press releases.

Photographs are of Slobodkina and her paintings and sculptures, as well as photographs of artwork by other abstract artists.

American Abstract Artists' records includes administrative material, correspondence, writings, selected exhibitions, and printed material dating from 1936 to 1996.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 5 series.

Series 1: Correspondence, 1934-1992 (0.4 linear feet; Box 1)

Series 2: Writings, circa 1920-1985 (6 folders; Box 1)

Series 3: Printed material, circa 1939-1994 (7 folders; Box 1, OV 4)

Series 4: Photographs, circa 1925-1970 (3 folders; Box 1)

Series 5: American Abstract Artists, circa 1936-1995 (0.9 linear feet, Box 1-3, OV 4)
Biographical / Historical:
Painter, sculptor, author, and illustrator Esphyr Slobodkina (1908-2002) lived and worked in New York City, Great Neck, and Long Island, New York and was known for her abstract art and her children's books, including the seminal Caps For Sale.

Slobodkina was born in Chelyabinsk, Siberia to Solomon Slobodkin and his wife, Itta Agranovich. After the Russian Revolution and Civil War of 1917-1918, her family immigrated to Harbin, Manchuria where her father found work with Standard Oil and her mother contributed to the family's finances by working as a dressmaker. After graduating from high school in 1927, Slobodkina immigrated to the United States to join her brother in New York City where she enrolled at the National Academy of Design.

At the Academy, Slobodkina met her future husband, the artist and fellow Russian émigré Ilya Bolotowsky. In 1936, they became founding members of the American Abstract Artists, an artist run organization that worked to advance abstract art at a time when few opportunities to exhibit their works existed. She served as the organization's first secretary and later served as treasurer, president, and institutional bibliographer.

In 1937, Slobodkina met the children's author Margaret Wise Brown. After seeing her work, Brown invited Slobodkina to illustrate The Little Fireman, the first of their many collaborations together. In 1940, Slobodkina's first published book, Caps For Sale, was released and has remained in print for over 70 years. It won the Lewis Carroll Shelf Award in 1958 and is considered a classic of children's literature.

Slobodkina and Bolotowsky divorced in 1938, after which she continued to produce abstract mixed media paintings and sculptures. Her first major one-person show was organized by the gallery owner A.E. Gallatin in 1940. Through the 1940s and into 1970s, Slobodkina regularly contributed to group exhibitions and her works are owned by numerous institutions, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Whitney Museum, Boston Museum of Fine Arts, and Hillwood Art Museum.

In addition to publishing children's books, Slobodkina authored three volumes of her autobiography, Notes for a Biographer (1976-1983) and edited American Abstract Artists: Its Publications, Catalogs, and Membership (1979) and the folio Ilya Bolotwosky (1985). Active until the end of her life, she oversaw the production of musical audio recordings for her 20 children's books well into her 80s, and at the age of 90, designed a museum financed through the Slobodkina Foundation. She died at her home in Glen Head, Long Island in 2002.
Related Materials:
The Archives also holds the American Abstract Artists records.
Separated Materials:
The Archives of American Art also holds materials lent for microfilming (N70-61) including a travel album, printed material, notes, McDowell colony correspondence, and an American Abstract Artists financial ledger. Lents materials were returned to the lender and are not described in the collection container inventory.

Additionally, 69 rolled drawings on tracing paper were transferred to Hillwood Art Museum in 2006.
Provenance:
Esphyr Slobodkina loaned a portion of her papers for microfilming and donated material in 1970. She gave additional papers between 1995 and 1996.
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:
Painters -- New York (State)  Search this
Topic:
Sculptors -- New York (State)  Search this
Women artists -- New York  Search this
Authors -- New York  Search this
Illustrators -- New York (State)  Search this
Painting, Abstract -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Photographs
Citation:
Esphyr Slobodkina papers, circa 1925-1995. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.slobesph
See more items in:
Esphyr Slobodkina papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-slobesph

Dorothy and Leo Rabkin papers

Creator:
Rabkin, Leo  Search this
Rabkin, Dorothy, 1922-2008  Search this
Names:
American Abstract Artists  Search this
Fine Arts Federation of New York  Search this
International Artists Association  Search this
Barnet, Will, 1911-2012  Search this
Bolotowsky, Ilya, 1907-1981  Search this
Extent:
4.6 Linear feet ((partially filmed on 1 microfilm reel))
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Interviews
Date:
1940-1979
Scope and Contents:
Papers relating to Leo and Dorothy Rabkin as art collectors, as well as Leo Rabkin's work in painting and sculpture and with American Abstract Artists.
Reel N69-68: Correspondence, catalogs, clippings, and photographs of Leo Rabkin and his work. Much of the material relates to the American Abstract Artsists, of which Rabkin was president.
Unmicrofilmed portion: Biographical material; exhibition, lecture, and sales files containing catalogs, announcements, correspondence, photographs of works of art, and clippings; and miscellany. Also included are records of the American Abstract Artists consisting of published histories, minutes, memorandum, membership and mailing lists, correspondence, exhibition files, and files on member-artists Ilya Bolotowsky, Will Barnet, and others, containing catalogs, photographs of art, biographical material, interviews, and clippings. Records of the U.S. Committee of the International Artists Association and the Fine Arts Federation of New York are also included.
Biographical / Historical:
Leo Rabkin (1919-2015) and Dorothy Rabkin (1922-2008) were art collectors in New York. Rabkin was also a painter and sculptor, and president of American Abstract Artists.
Provenance:
The materials filmed on reel N69-68 were originally loaned to the Archives by Leo Rabkin in 1969. They were subsequently given, along with other materials, in 1979 and 1980.
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
Topic:
Art -- Societies, etc. -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Art -- Collectors and collecting -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.rabkleo
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-rabkleo

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