National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; transfer from the Smithsonian American Art Museum; gift of the Committee for "A Tribute to Mrs. Belva Ann Lockwood" through Mrs. Anna Kelton Wiley, 1917
This small collection of the papers of sculptor Marion Walton measures 0.8 linear feet and dates from 1915-1976. Fifteen folders of letters written to Marion and her mother Blanche Wetherill Walton include many from artists and photographers, writers, musicians and composers, and political figures. Also found are printed materials, photographs, and a file concerning a reception for author Jonathan Daniels.
Scope and Content Note:
The collection measures 0.8 linear feet, dates from 1915-1976, and documents the career of sculptor Marion Walton. Found within the papers are letters, printed material, photographs, and a file concerning a reception for author Jonathan Daniels.
Letters include those received by Walton and her mother, music patron Blanche Wetherill Walton, from many notable correspondents, including artist Charles Green Shaw, historian and suffragist Mary Beard, and novelist Vera Brittain. There are scattered letters from artists Béla Kádár, Rockwell Kent, Fred Dana Marsh, Georgia O'Keeffe, John Singer Sargent, Theo Stamos, and Abbott Handerson Thayer, composers Henry Cowell and Carl Ruggles, musician Pete Seeger, lecturer Ruth Gage-Colby, photographer Roy E. Stryker, political figures James Forrestal, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Shirley Williams, and writers Carl Carmer and Margaret Storm Jameson.
Printed material primarily consists of clippings and exhibition catalogs, and photographs are of Walton, her family, colleagues, and artwork. Of special interest is an early photograph of Alberto Giacometti with Rodin's model Carmen, and a photograph of Pablo Picasso autographed on the reverse.
The collection is arranged into 4 series. All series are arranged chronologically.
Series 1: Letters, 1922-1976 (Box 1; 15 folders)
Series 2: File Concerning a Reception for Jonathan Daniels, 1946 (Box 1; 14 folders)
Series 3: Printed Material, 1924-1976 (Boxes 1-2; 17 folders)
Series 4: Photographs, 1915-1972 (Box 2; 18 folders)
Marion Walton was born in 1905 in New Rochelle, New York, the daughter of Ernest Forster Walton and music patron Blanche Wetherill Walton. During the 1920s, she studied at the Art Students League and, from approximately 1922 to 1924, at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière in Paris under sculptor Antoine Bourdelle. One of her classmates was Alberto Giacometti.
In 1933, Walton had a solo exhibition at the Weyhe Gallery and later participated in numerous group exhibitions primarily in New York City and in Paris, France. Her work is represented in private collections in the United States and abroad, and in the museum of the University of Nebraska.
Walton taught students in her studio in New York City and at Sarah Lawrence College. She was also a member of Artists Equity and a charter member of the Sculptors Guild.
Walton was married to James Putnam, assistant to the President of the publishing house, MacMillan Company.
Marion Walton died in 1996.
The Marion Walton papers were donated in 1976 by Marion Walton.
The collection is open for research. Use requires an appointment.