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Baxter Art Gallery records

Creator:
Baxter Art Gallery  Search this
Names:
California Institute of Technology  Search this
Pasadena Gallery of Contemporary Arts  Search this
Belloli, Jay  Search this
Schwartz, Lillian  Search this
Smith, David R. (David Rodman), 1923-  Search this
Extent:
17 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Date:
1962-1997
Summary:
The records of the Baxter Art Gallery measure 17 linear feet and date from 1962 to 1997. The collection documents the activities of the gallery founded by Professor David Smith in 1971 on the campus of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, California. Documentation includes administrative records, business correspondence, programs and events, exhibition files, and printed material, as well as three films by artist Lillian Schwartz shown at the gallery. The bulk of the collection (9.7 linear feet) consists of Exhibition Files, which document nearly every exhibition held at the gallery from 1971 to 1985. Of note are detailed records regarding "25 Years of Space Photography," the last exhibition held at Baxter Art Gallery in 1985 which toured internationally through 1997. Also included are records of the Pasadena Gallery of Contemporary Arts, which was founded by former director Jay Belloli after Baxter Art Gallery closed.
Scope and Contents:
The records of the Baxter Art Gallery measure 17 linear feet and date from 1962 to 1997. The collection documents the activities of the gallery founded by Professor David Smith in 1971 on the campus of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, California. Documentation includes administrative records, business correspondence, programs and events, exhibition files, and printed material, as well as three films by artist Lillian Schwartz shown at the gallery. The bulk of the collection (9.7 linear feet) consists of Exhibition Files, which document nearly every exhibition held at the gallery from 1971 to 1985. Of note are detailed records regarding "25 Years of Space Photography," the last exhibition held at Baxter Art Gallery in 1985 which toured internationally through 1997. Also included are records of the Pasadena Gallery of Contemporary Arts, which was founded by former director Jay Belloli after Baxter Art Gallery closed.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 7 series.

Series 1: Administrative Records, 1970-1987 (Boxes 1-4, Box 21; 3.4 linear feet)

Series 2: Business Correspondence, 1969-1988 (Box 4, Box 21; 0.5 linear feet)

Series 3: Programs and Events, 1971-1986 (Boxes 4-5, Box 21; 0.5 linear feet)

Series 4: Exhibition Files, 1968-1997 (Boxes 5-14, Box 21, FC 17; 9.7 linear feet)

Series 5: Printed Material, 1962-1989 (Box 14, Box 21, OV 16, OV 23; 0.7 linear feet)

Series 6: Pasadena Gallery of Contemporary Arts Records, 1981-1990 (Boxes 14-15, Boxes 21-22, OV 23; 1.6 linear feet)

Series 7: Motion Picture Film, circa 1970, circa 1975 (FC 18-20; 0.4 linear feet)
Biographical / Historical:
Baxter Art Gallery (1971-1985) was an art exhibition space at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, California founded by Professor David Smith.

David R. Smith, professor of Literature, established an exhibition program for Caltech in 1968 as part of the Institute Programs Committee. In 1971 Baxter Art Gallery was formally established as part of the new Donald E. Baxter Hall of the Humanities and Social Sciences. The majority of the exhibitions focused on contemporary art, with a special interest in Southern California artists and art and technology. David Smith became the first gallery director. After years of struggling to find funding for exhibitions, in 1977 the gallery received sponsorship from the Pasadena Art Alliance. The establishment of Friends of the Baxter Art Gallery around this time allowed for more educational programs around the exhibitions, such as lectures, informal talks, films, tours, and performances.

Michael H. Smith served as director from 1977 to 1982, followed by Jay Belloli, director from 1982 to 1985. In 1984 the closing of the gallery was announced, despite outcry from faculty and the public. The last exhibition "25 Years of Space Photography" was held at the gallery from May 22 to September 2, 1985. That exhibition continued to tour internationally to over 50 museums under the curatorship of Jay Belloli.

After Baxter Art Gallery closed Belloli established the Pasadena Gallery of Contemporary Arts and worked to find a new exhibition space. This gallery in collaboration with the Pasadena Arts Workshop became the Armory Center for the Arts in 1989 and Belloli served as Director of Gallery Programs.
Provenance:
The records were donated in 1986 by the Baxter Art Gallery via David Smith and Jay Belloli, Directors, and in 1991 by David Grether, chair of the Division of Humanities at the California Institute of Technology. Additional records were donated in 2011 and 2019 by Jay Belloli.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
Rights:
The Baxter Art Gallery records 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.
Topic:
Motion pictures (visual works)  Search this
Space photography  Search this
Function:
Art galleries -- California
Citation:
Baxter Art Gallery records, 1962-1997. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.baxtart
See more items in:
Baxter Art Gallery records
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-baxtart
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