Oral history interview with Mary Shaffer, 2008 April 13-14
5 sound files (3 hr., 54 min.) : digital, wav
Transcript: 64 pages.
An interview of Mary Shaffer conducted 2008 April 13-14, by Jospehine Shea, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at Shaffer's home and studio, in Taos, N.M.
Born in Walterboro, SC, Shaffer speaks of her early childhood living in South America; her formative years being raised in Europe; her early artistic training in a European tradition; then studying art at the Rhode Island School of Design where she met her husband, artist Hardu Keck. She discusses her transition from working as a painter to experimental work in glass and conceptual art; being part of a community of artists that included Dale Chihuly and Fritz Dreisbach; and teaching as a means of support during the early years of her career. She discusses the importance of galleries in promoting her work, and how commissions enabled her to stretch and grow as an artist.
Place of publication, production, or execution: United States
General Note: Originally recorded on 4 sound discs. Reformatted in 2010 as 5 digital wav files. Duration is 3 hr., 54 min.
Access Note / Rights: This transcript is open for research. Access to the entire recording is restricted. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Citation: Quotes and excerpts must be cited as follows: Oral history interview with Mary Shaffer, 2008 April 13-14. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Additional Forms: Transcript is available on the Archives of American Art's website.
Funding: Funding for this interview was provided by the Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America.
Biography Note: Mary Shaffer (1947- ) is a glass artist in Taos, N.M. Josephine Shea (1958- ) is curator in Grosse Pointe Park, Michigan.
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.
Location Note: Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 750 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001
interviewee: Shaffer, Mary, 1947-
interviewer: Shea, Josephine, 1958-
Subject: Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America
Record number: (DSI-AAA_CollID)16040
Record number: (DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)306959
Record number: AAA_collcode_shaffe08