Transcript: 107 pages.
An interview of Raimonds Staprans conducted 1997 August 14-1997 September 15, by Paul Karlstrom, for the Archives of American Art. The sessions were held in Karlstrom's San Francisco office.
Staprans discusses his family background; earliest childhood memories of growing up in Latvia; his father's persecution by Germans and Russians which ultimately led to their departure from Austria in 1947; living in Salem, Or.; attending University of Washington at Seattle and his contact there with Morris Graves, Mark Tobey, George Tsutakawa, and Alexander Archipenko; graduate studies at the University of California, Berkeley; and artists he admires, including Pierre Matisse, Thomas Eakins, and Edward Hopper.
Staprans discusses at length Wayne Thiebaud and Richard Diebenkorn; and comparisons made to his work. He discusses his sensuality as a basis for his life and art; early gallery experiences; his thoughts on criticism and reviews; his relationship with Fred Maxwell of the Maxwell Galleries in San Francisco and how his loyalty to the gallery held back his career; stresses in his marriage and of raising children; the breakup of his marriage and immersion in painting and sculpture; his decorative works under the nom de plume Carl Ulmanes; developing feelings of dejection and cynicism which nearly ended his art career and recovering from those feelings; his playwriting career; and his views on both careers.