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Westphal, Alice and Kenneth

Collection Creator:
Turner, Robert Chapman, 1913-2005  Search this
Container:
Box 9, Folder 10-11
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1984-1989
Collection Restrictions:
The 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 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:
Robert Chapman Turner papers, circa 1917-2005. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Robert Chapman Turner papers
Robert Chapman Turner papers / Series 5: Professional Files
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9a4cec354-a982-4756-a55d-a1ac848f19bf
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-turnrobe-ref96

Oral history interview with Ruth Duckworth, 2001 April 27

Interviewee:
Duckworth, Ruth, 1919-2009  Search this
Duckworth, Ruth, 1919-2009  Search this
Interviewer:
Trapp, Kenneth R.  Search this
Subject:
DeVore, Richard  Search this
Larsen, Jack Lenor  Search this
Leach, Bernard  Search this
McKinnell, James  Search this
McKinnell, Nan  Search this
Moore, Henry, 1898-1986  Search this
Rie, Lucie  Search this
Vergette, Nicholas  Search this
Westphal, Alice  Search this
Central School of Arts and Crafts (Birmingham, England)  Search this
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston  Search this
University of Chicago  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Ceramics -- Study and teaching  Search this
Ceramics -- Technique  Search this
World War, 1939-1945  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Women ceramicists  Search this
Women sculptors  Search this
Theme:
Craft  Search this
Women  Search this
Chicago's Art-Related Archival Materials: A Terra Foundation Resource  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)12764
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)226964
AAA_collcode_duckwo01
Theme:
Craft
Women
Chicago's Art-Related Archival Materials: A Terra Foundation Resource
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_226964
Online Media:

Oral history interview with Ruth Duckworth

Interviewee:
Duckworth, Ruth, 1919-2009  Search this
Interviewer:
Trapp, Kenneth R.  Search this
Creator:
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
Names:
Central School of Arts and Crafts (Birmingham, England)  Search this
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston  Search this
Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America  Search this
University of Chicago -- Faculty  Search this
DeVore, Richard, 1933-2006  Search this
Larsen, Jack Lenor  Search this
Leach, Bernard, 1887-1979  Search this
McKinnell, James  Search this
McKinnell, Nan  Search this
Moore, Henry, 1898-1986  Search this
Rie, Lucie  Search this
Vergette, Nicholas, 1923-1974  Search this
Westphal, Alice  Search this
Extent:
67 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
2001 April 27
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Ruth Duckworth conducted 2001 April 27, by Kenneth R. Trapp, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at the studios of Smithsonian Productions, Washington, D.C.
Duckworth speaks of her early life and the time prior to her family leaving Germany; the decision to leave Germany in 1936 due to Hitler and the War; acclimating herself to England; attending Liverpool School of Art; WWII in England and the psychological effects of working in munitions factories; her nervous breakdown and seven years of therapy; her beginning to sculpt; her first exhibition of sculpture in London; her marriage and life with Aidron; difficulties in being an outsider in the world of art, specifically speaking about being a woman in sculpture; her first meeting with Lucie Rie; the devastation she felt after her brother died; attendance at the Hammersmith School of Art and not feeling her place there; switching to Central School of Arts and Crafts; her first job teaching ceramics at the Central School; learning the technique of glazing; visiting museums in London; how poetry nourished her during those early years, specifically the poetry of Rainer Maria Rilke; the selling of her first pieces, "pieces that wouldn't sell"; the art scene in London; how the opportunity at the University of Chicago arose; her experience at the University of Chicago, an academic institution rather than a fine arts school; her first big show in the U.S. at the University in 1965; her graduate and undergraduate students; life as a foreigner in the U.S.; the opportunity to teach at the University of Iowa but becoming an associate professor at the University of Chicago instead; the cultural movement and ceramics movement in the U.S. during the 1960's; how her work changed from European influences to American influences; departments in art that were very unfriendly to women; her association with James and Nan McKinnell; her excursions and teaching trips across the U.S. as well as in Canada and Israel; her trip with Aidron across the U.S. and then their eventual separation; her friendship with Alice Westphal and the creation of the gallery Exhibit A; the unconscious changes in her work; her views on stoneware versus porcelain; Jack Lenor Larsen's summer show and the artists she met through that; her relationship with American museums versus European; unfortunate events at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts; her continued feelings as an outsider but acceptance in later life as an artist, more so from the ceramic community than from the museum community; publications and catalogues of her work; the influences other artists have had upon her work; the limited use of color in her work; her collection of bones; her love of gardening; her sketches; the therapy coiling clay does for her; her projects at the moment; where she gets her ideas from; how she sees herself fitting in versus not fitting in; her speech at an international symposium in Amsterdam; what she would include in a retrospective of her artwork; her hopes to have her work be therapeutic to viewers and cause them to contemplate it; more thoughts on color; American culture; what matters most to her right now and that is saving the Earth; wishing to continue with her work and have a better relationship with museums. Ruth Duckworth recalls, Henry Moore, Bernard Leach, Nellie Barr, Virginia Ferrari, Hardy Schlick, Richard DeVore, Nicholas Vergette, Jane Goodall and others.
Biographical / Historical:
Ruth Duckworth (1919-2009) was a sculptor and clay artist from Chicago, Illinois. Kenneth Trapp (1943- ) is curator-in-charge at the Smithsonian's Renwick Gallery.
General:
Originally recorded on 2 DAT tapes. Reformatted in 2010 as 2 digital wav files. Duration is 2 hr., 29 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 administrators.
Occupation:
Ceramicists -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
Sculptors -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
Topic:
Ceramics -- Study and teaching  Search this
Ceramics -- Technique  Search this
World War, 1939-1945  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Women ceramicists  Search this
Women sculptors  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.duckwo01
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9ca1c4ade-d6e9-445d-9c02-f69f07b60d14
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-duckwo01
Online Media:

Ruth Duckworth / by Ruth Duckworth and Alice Westphal

Author:
Duckworth, Ruth 1919-  Search this
Westphal, Alice  Search this
Subject:
Duckworth, Ruth 1919-  Search this
Physical description:
[33] p. : ill. (some col.) ; 19 x 27 cm
Type:
Books
Date:
1977
C1977
Call number:
N6797.D8 W47
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_646275

Putting pottery in perspective : past, present & future / [Alice Westphal, guest curator.]

Author:
Westphal, Alice  Search this
Rockford College Art Gallery  Search this
Physical description:
[32] p. : ill. (some col.) ; 28 cm
Type:
Exhibitions
Date:
1990
Topic:
Pottery  Search this
Call number:
NK3712.R68 R68 1990
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_395795

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