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Oral history interview with Albert Landa, 1998 Feb. 26

Archives of American Art
2 sound files (1 hr., 13 min.): digital, wav

Transcript: 36 pages.

An interview with Albert Landa conducted 1998 Feb. 26, by Stephen Polcari, for the Archives of American Art.

This interview took place in AAA's New York Regional office. Interview concerns Thomas Hart Benton's murals at the New School Art Center.

Oral history interview with Jack Lenor Larsen, 2004 February 6-8

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 78 pages.

An interview of Jack Lenor Larsen conducted 2004 February 6-8, by Arline M. Fisch, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, in Longhouse, East Hampton, N.Y.

Larsen speaks of his childhood in Seattle, Washington; his parents and other adults who had a positive impact on his development; building things with his friends; attending the University of Washington to study architecture and deciding to study textiles instead; visiting Dorothy Liebes's textile studio; leaving school and moving to Los Angeles; attending the University of Southern California and eventually returning to the University of Washington; becoming a teaching assistant to Ed Rossbach; getting a Masters degree at Cranbrook Academy of Art; meeting many influential people in San Francisco and New York; moving to New York and setting up a studio; working on commission for several companies including Thaibok; expanding his offices to include larger looms and a showroom; setting up a branch of production in Haiti; working in the fashion industry and designing home decor; and working in Southeast Asia developing handcrafted woven exports. He also speaks of his involvement with the American Craft Council and the World Crafts Council, re-organizing and building the new campus at the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts; traveling to Central Asia, Africa, Europe, and his desire to travel more; working and exhibiting in Japan; experiencing the Japanese textile industry; writing numerous books on fiber arts including, "The Dyer's Art," often collaborating with other fiber artists; developing a classification system for interlacing; collecting art; gardening and its relation to art and design; building Round House and the inspiration behind it; building LongHouse using the Japanese Ise Shrine as a model and plans for further expansion; retiring and difficulties writing, "A Weaver's Memoir." Larsen also recalls Dorothy Liebes, Marianne Strengell, Florence Knoll, Edgar Kaufman, Ed Rossbach, Toshiko Takaezu, Francis Merritt, Mary Bishop, Garth Clark, Issey Miyake, Mildred Constantine, and others.

Oral history interview with Harold Lehman, 1997 Mar. 28

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 144 p.

An interview of Harold Lehman conducted 1997 Mar. 28, by Stephen Polcari, for the Archives of American Art. Lehman speaks of his early educational and artistic experiences in New York; taking sculpture classes; moving to California; going to school at Manual Arts; going to Ojai and learning the religious philosophy of Krishnamurti; participating in literary discussion groups and the books he read; his years at Otis Art Institute; working with Sisqueiros, and how the frescoes they created were destroyed by the Red Squad; when he became interested in painting; working with Lorser Feitelson; working with the Public Works of Art Project; moving back to New York and working with the Federal Arts Project; his experiences with Sisqueiros and the artist workshop they set up; his thoughts on the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, Stalin and Trotsky; his thoughts on social realism; the project he did on Rikers Island; doing mural art; breaking both his arms two months before the attack on Pearl Harbor and how he managed to stay out of the army; working on his mural in Woodstock; working on war bond painting for the government; his art work during the war years; recollections of Jackson Pollack and his interest in Indian Art; going to see the Picasso show; his artistic influences; his thoughts on America's involvement in World War II; his life after the war and what inspired him; his memories of Phil Guston; thoughts on Harold Rosenberg and Clement Greenberg; his life after the war, and other recollections about his life and friends. He recalls Max Maikowski, Jean de Laffiere, Rutolo, Frederick J. Schwankovsky, Phil Guston, Jackson Pollack, Manuel Tolegian, Rueben Kadish, George Stanley, Roger Noble Vernon, D.A. Siqueiros, Luis Arenal, Lorser Feitelson, Helen Lundberg, Leo Katz, Merle Armiduke, Stanley McCoy, Axel Horr (Horn), Carla Mahl (Clara Moore), Louie Serstadt, Diego Rivera, Jose Orozco, Arnold Blanch, Harold Rosenberg, Clement Greenberg, Arnold Blanch, and many others.

Oral history interview with Abram Lerner, 1975 Dec. 9-1976 Jan. 27

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 179 p.

An interview of Abram Lerner conducted 1975 Dec. 9-1976 Jan. 27, by Paul Cummings, for the Archives of American Art.

Lerner speaks of his childhood and youth in New York City; his education; going to museums and developing an interest in art; his painting career; getting on the WPA mural project; artists' unions and their importance; the gallery scene in New York City in the 1930s; going to work at the A.C.A. Gallery; meeting Joseph Hirshhorn, becoming friends and going to work for him; Hirshhorn's style of collecting; vainly trying to keep track of Hirshhorn's acquisitions; early exhibitions of Hirshhorn's collection, and their effect on the art market; Hirshhorn's involvement with the Smithsonian Institution and the beginning of the Hirshhorn Museum; the development of the Museum and its interaction with the Smithsonian; early exhibitions there; problems of museum administration and security; public response to the Hirshhorn Museum.

Lerner recalls Philip Evergood, Burgoyne Diller, Max Weber, and Douglas MacAgy.

Oral history interview with Sol LeWitt, 1974 July 15

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 75 p.

An interview of Sol LeWitt conducted 1974 July 15, by Paul Cummings, for the Archives of American Art.

LeWitt speaks of his studies at Syracuse University, the Tiffany Foundation award for his lithograph, odd jobs, his work for magazines and the graphics department of I. M. Pei's firm, travel in Europe, his army service, graphic design work, typography, and abstract expressionism.

He discusses his job at the Museum of Modern Art, influences upon his work, his interest in film and the photographs of Eadward Muybridge, and exhibitions at the Dwan, Daniels, and Kaymar Galleries. LeWitt comments on his change from metal to wood sculpture; conceptual, minimal and post-minimal art; series and systems; his wall drawings; torn paper and folded paper "drawings"; prints and etchings; music and books; and the exploitation of art and artists. He recalls Anthony Candido, Dan Flavin, Earl Kerkam, and others.

Oral history interview with Marian Locks, 1989 Sept. 20-29

Archives of American Art
Transcript 133 p.

An interview of Marian Locks conducted, 1989 Sept, 20-29, by Marina Pacini, for the Archives of American Art Philadelphia Project. Locks discusses her early life, education, and the evolution of the Marian Locks Gallery, founded in 1968, which represented Philadelphia artists. Locks discusses the artists represented by the gallery including Edna Andrade, Liz Osborne, John Formicola, James Havard, Tom Chimes, and Warren Rohrer. Along with a discussion of how she met each artist and his/her stylistic development over the years, Locks discusses the sale of the artists' works, who their collectors were and how successful they were over the years. Among the collectors discussed are Dr. Luther Brady and various Philadelphia corporations. She discusses exhibitions at the gallery such as a group show of women artists, and an exhibit of Louis Kahn drawings. She discusses the gallery scene in Philadelphia; efforts to get recognition for Philadelphia artists through the press; the Philadelphia press coverage of the art scene; the relationship between the city's museums and artists; and recent changes in the Marian Locks Gallery.

Oral history interview with Molly Luce, 1981 Mar. 10-June 18

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 44 p.

An interview of Molly Luce conducted 1981 Mar.10-1981 June 18, by Robert F. Brown, for the Archives of American Art.

Luce speaks of her childhood; her early interested in drawing and botany; her two years of study at Wheaton College; her training at Art Students League; her acquaintances from the League including Anne Rector, Katherine Schmidt, Kenneth Hayes Miller; her travels in Europe with her first husband, Alan Burroughs; her residences in Minneapolis, Boston, and finally Little Compton; and observations on a range of her own paintings. She recalls Lloyd Goodrich, Dennis Miller, Kenneth Hayes Miller, Peggy Bacon, Isabel Bishop, Dorothy Varian, Alexander Brook, Edward Forbes, and many others.

Oral history interview with Gilbert Sanchez Lujan, 1997 Nov. 7-17

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 104 p.

An interview of Gilbert Lujan conducted 1997 Nov. 7-17, by Jeffrey Rangel, for the Archives of American Art, in Los Angeles, Calif. and La Mesa, N.M.

Sanchez Lujan discusses his growing up in a rural community, East Los Angeles, and Mexico; how early experiences and changes in culture have affected his art and developed his interest in history and politics; his attraction to black culture and the relationship of art as a medium for inter-ethnic interaction where politics and human nature create divisions; his understanding of racial segregation and apartheid in California society; coming into consciousness as a Chicano; and his collaboration and the formation of Los Four with Roberto de la Rocha, Carlos Almaraz, and Frank Romero.

Oral history interview with John Marshall, 2001 April 5

Archives of American Art
Sound recording: 6 sound files (3 hrs., 2 min.) digital, wav

Transcript: 45 pages

An interview of John Marshall conducted 2001 April 5, by Lloyd Herman, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, in Edmonds, Washington.

Marshall speaks of his childhood in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; participating in an educational program with the Carnegie Museum; his exposure to art while in grade school and throughout his education; joining the army after high school; spending time in Germany with the army and experiencing the metalwork of that area; learning to work hard from his father; his family background; attending Grove City College, then working in construction during the day and going to classes at Carnegie Tech during the night; finally attending Cleveland Institute of Art; some of his teachers at the Institute, Kenneth Bates, Toshiko Takaezu, and John Clague; his first experiences with metal, Fred Miller, and learning how to design metal pieces; getting a job as head of the metals department at Syracuse and completing his MFA there; meeting Paul Smith and Lee Nordness, and participating in Objects: USA; his travels throughout Europe; the many commissions he has done for churches, everything from baptismal bowls, chalices, and crosses; Patrick Lannan, and how instrumental he was in Marshall's career, his collection of work that Lannan bought and where it all is now located; the different types of communities in the different areas he lived; commissions and how they were important to his career; how he challenges himself with new ideas and creations; the Handy and Harman Workshop; the difference between a university trained artist and one who has learned his/her craft outside academia; his students and how much satisfaction he has received from teaching; the decline in metal working programs at the university level; the influence of other faculty members on his work, such as Lee DuSell; the critics of metalwork, Bruce Metcalf and Gary Griffin; his involvement in the Society of North American Goldsmiths; and his two sons. Marshall also recalls John Paul Miller, Winifred Lutz, Ramona Solberg, Ruth Penington, Michael Scott, Don Bacorn, Annie Hauberg, and others.

Oral history interview with Mary Fuller McChesney, 1994 Sept. 28

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 145 p.

An interview of Mary Fuller McChesney conducted 1994 Sept. 28, by Susan Landauer, for the Archives of American Art, Women in the Arts in Southern California Oral History Project, at the artist's home, on Sonoma Mountain, Calif.

Fuller McChesney discusses her childhood and growing up during the Depression; her student days at the University of California, Berkeley; the political response on the campus to WWII and the Japanese interment; her experience working as a welder in the shipyards which she considers her introduction to sculpture; her introduction to the art community in San Francisco through the cooperative Artists' Guild Gallery; her association with the Abstract Expressionists at the California School of Fine Arts in the 1940s; her foray into writing fiction and her success as a mystery writer; her work on the Archives of American Art's oral history project documenting the WPA art project in California; her first significant publication on the San Francisco School of Abstract Expressionism, Period of Exploration, and the interviews she conducted in the mid-late 1960s for the project.

She describes her attitudes and philosphies about art; living at Point Richmond with her husband Robert McChesney, Edward Corbett, Hassel Smith, and poet Weldon Kees during the late 1940s; her impressions of the Cedar Bar and New York artists during the mid-late 1960s; her own artistic evolution and career as a sculptor; the intellectual and artistic sources of her work; her subjects and techniques; her public commissions; her audience and market; and her experiences and perspectives as a woman artist and feminist. She recalls Edward Corbett, Willem De Kooning, Richard Diebenkorn, Weldon Kees, Douglas MacAgy, Bea Mandelman, Conrad Marca-Relli, Agnes Martin, Robert McChesney, David Park, Ad Reinhardt, Louis Ribak, Hassel Smith, Clay Spohn, Clyfford Still, and Esteban Vicente.

Oral history interview with Bruce Metcalf, 2009 June 10

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 96 pages.

Sound recording: 5 sound files (4 hr., 10 min.) digital, wav

An interview of Bruce Metcalf conducted 2009 June 10, by Edward S. Cooke, Jr., for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at Metcalf's home, in Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania. Mr. Metcalf discusses his early years in Amherst, Massachusetts; beginnings as a maker with modeling clay and plastic airplane models; undergraduate years at Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York in the late 1960s; early interest in architecture; early disenchantment with modernist discourse and theory; introduction to Marxist theory and idealism of the 1960s; summer trip to California in 1970; return to the East Coast upon the death of his father; return to college, transferring into jewelry in his senior year; influence of his teacher Michael Jerry; seeing the work in "Objects: USA" exhibition (1969) and influence of the work of J. Fred Woell, Richard Mawdsley, L. Brent Kington; rejection of current trends in art, including conceptual art and formalism; his affinity for the medium of metal, and hammersmithing; influence of funk ceramics, including work by Fred Bauer and Richard Shaw; brief stint at Montana State University, Bozeman; working in cardboard and wood; graduate school at the State University of New York, New Paltz; working with Robert Ebendorf and Kurt Matzdorf at New Paltz; work as a production artist/craftsperson; attending Rhinebeck, New York, craft fair in the mid-1970s; the influence of writings by William Morris and John Ruskin and the notion of "dignified labor"; graduate school at Tyler School of Art, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; formulating his aesthetic of narrative symbolism; publication of his first article in 1977 as a response to review of the exhibition "Forms in Metal: 275 Years of Metalsmithing in America" (1975); yearlong teaching position at Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado; taking a teaching position at Kent State University, Kent, Ohio (1986-1991); publication of his article "Crafts: Second-Class Citizens?" in the first issue of Metalsmith, 1980; growing involvement with the Society of North American Goldsmiths; development of his notion of "social utility" and the role and function of crafts and making; expansion of his writing on craft; rejection of the deconstructivist school of thought in the 1980s; abandonment of sculptural objects for jewelry in the early 1990s; return to Philadelphia in 1991; early teaching of history of craft, first at Kent, then on a Fulbright scholarship in Seoul, South Korea (1990), later at the University of the Arts, Philadelphia, in the early 1990s; influence of Martin Eidelberg; development of his vision for a history of craft course; collaboration with Janet Koplos on "Makers: A History of American Studio Craft"; use of his medium and craft to explore issues of nurturing and anxiety; the psychological/social effect and aesthetic importance of wearing jewelry (for the wearer and the artist); the pros and cons of craft collectors; the problematics of installation work by craft artists; recent trends in craft, including Anne Wilson's notion of "sloppy craft" and an "anti-craft" attitude; recent artists, including Arthur Hash and Gabriel Craig; lack of exhibition opportunities for younger/emerging artists; influential recent texts, including "Shards," by Garth Clark. He also recalls Robert Arneson, Randy Long, Carol Kumata, Jamie Bennett, Steve and Harriet Rogers, Wayne Hammer, Stanley Lechtzin, Gene Koss, Henry Halem, Mark Burns, Rose Slivka, Nilda Getty, Jill Slosberg, Sharon Church, John Gill, David La Plantz, Lois Moran; Gary Griffin; William Daley, Marian Pritchard, Glenn Adamson, Pat Flynn, Susan Cummins, and Judith Schaechter.

The following oral history transcript is the result of a recorded interview with Bruce Metcalf on June 10, 2009. The interview took place in Bala Cynwyd, Penn., and was conducted by Edward S. Cooke, Jr. for the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. This interview is part of the Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America. Bruce Metcalf has reviewed the transcript. His corrections and emendations appear below in brackets with initials. This transcript has been lightly edited for readability by the Archives of American Art. The reader should bear in mind that they are reading a transcript of spoken, rather than written, prose.

Oral history interview with Jean Milant, 2015 July 20

Archives of American Art
Sound recording: 4 sound files (3 hr., 7 min.) digital, wav

Transcript: 102 pages

An interview of Jean Milant, conducted 2015 July 20, by Hunter Drohojowska-Philp, for the Archives of American Art at Milant's home in Los Angeles, California.

Jean Milant discusses growing up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and his French and German heritage; his introduction to art instruction in high school and further studies at the University of Wisconsin; his trips to Europe and New York City as an undergraduate art student; his time as a graduate student at the University of New Mexico, and his work at the Tamarind Institute printmaking program and his introduction to Los Angeles; his work at Tamarind with Ed Ruscha, Sam Francis, Ed Moses, and Ken Price, among others; the beginnings of Cirrus Gallery and Cirrus Editions and his search for backers for the two endeavors; his partnership with Terry Inch as a backer for Cirrus. Mr. Milant also describes the decision to move his gallery and printmaking shop to downtown Los Angeles in 1979; the support of Robert Egelston and the collector Donald Marron and other collectors who first subscribed to his print editions; his experiences in France with Minnie de Beauvau-Craon; the gallery and museum scene in Los Angeles in the early '70s and '80s; his efforts to promote Los Angeles as a vibrant center of art, including trips to Europe in the early '70s to show his artists; the creation of Ed Ruscha's prints using food; working with Bruce Nauman and John Baldessari to create prints; the creation of the Los Angeles Visual Arts group of L.A. art dealers; his involvement with the creation of the Los Angeles Institute of Contemporary Art in 1974; his work with the artist Guy de Cointet and Mr. Cointet's early performances at Cirrus Gallery; the opening of MOCA in 1984; his desire to create a think-tank institute to help create a viable future for art. Mr. Milant also recalls Garo Antreasian, Newton Harrison, June Wayne, Frank Gehry, Robert Irwin, Eugene Sturman, Matsumi Kanemitsu, Ken Tyler, Riko Mizuno, Irving Blum, Gerry Rosen, Robert Overby, David Trowbridge as well as Chris Burden, Greg Card, Karen Carson, Craig Kauffman, Marian Goodman, Alain Rivière, Charles Christopher Hill, Steven Leiber, Viva, Michel Auder, and Jonas Wood, among others.

Oral history interview with Jesús Moroles, 2004 July 19-20

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 102 p.

An interview of Jesús Moroles conducted 2004 July 19-20, by Cary Cordova, for the Archives of American Art, in Rockport, Tex.

Moroles speaks of his parents' poor background and young courtship; his parents' strong work ethic, and his inheritance of this work ethic; earning money through art commissions at a young age; being a young entrepreneur; joining the Air Force and avoiding combat in Southeast Asia by working with electronics; doing photography while stationed in Thailand; choosing stone as medium; numerous injuries he has received during stonecutting; working in Pietra Santa, Italy; meeting and working under Luis Jimenez; working in segregated Waxahachie, Tex.; differences between his figurative and abstract works; why he curates all his shows; and the reasons behind his unconventional stone-sawing methods. Moroles also discusses how he names his works and series; moving his studio to Rockport; his fears of being typecast as a specific type of artist (i.e., "fountain" or "Chicano"); incredulity and disdain towards art journalism and scholarship; his commission for the CBS building; his good relationships with his dealers; his new book of artwork; his desire to slow down his production; his unconventional Baptist/Latino upbringing and his present lack of religion; the Houston Police Memorial; the pyramid motif in his work; his visits to China; moving to Rockport; the tactile nature of his works; his belief in the musicality of granite; his megalomaniacal disposition towards his works; the drowning victims in the Forth Worth Water Gardens; his desire to create sacred places, and the meaning of that phrase; the process of "granite weaving"; his new metal pieces; the lack of political meanings in his art; his "Moonscapes"; and his affections for his daughter. Moroles also recalls Eckhard Pfeiffer, Isamu Noguchi, Ulrich Ruckriem, Eero Saarinen, David Shrader, Frank Ribelin, Ricardo Legoretta, Judy Baca, and others.

Oral history interview with William Morris, 2009 July 13-14

Archives of American Art
Sound recording: 7 wav files (5 hr., 5min.) : digital

Transcript: 105 pages

An interview of William Morris conducted 2009 July 13-14, by Mija Riedel, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at Morris' home, in Stanwood, Washington.

William Morris speaks of his decision to stop working in glass in 2005; his deep connection to the natural world; working now with stone; the longstanding theme of man and nature in his work; his influence on the studio glass movement; use of installations; relationship to the greater art world; Cache [1993]; the importance of working in a team, particularly with Jon Ormbrek; studio practice and philosophy of working in the studio; series Man Adorned and first use of the human form; how his work evolves artistically; the influence of his travels on his work and his particular affinity for Mesoamerican culture; the process of choosing his subjects; growing up in Carmel, California, and frequenting the museum at the Carmel Mission Basilica; his early fascination with Native American artifacts and history in the museum; childhood spent hiking in the hills around Carmel and youth spent camping and rock-climbing; art instruction during childhood; ceramics work in high school; introduction to ideas of Carl Jung and Joseph Campbell by his high school teacher, Lloyd Baskerville; undergraduate work at California State University, Chico, working with Vernon Patrick; first experience with glass in high school, through the Fort Ord military base crafts department; brief studies at Central Washington University in Ellensburg, Washington; arriving at Pilchuck Glass School, Stanwood, Washington, in 1977 as a shop assistant/maintenance person; his first encounter with Dale Chihuly; 10 years as Chihuly's main assistant and de facto apprenticeship; his greater overall technical education at Pilchuck; the development of his own team as he continued to work with Chihuly; working with Chihuly and Italo Scanga; the synergy of working in a group and artistic cross-pollination at Pilchuck; the influence and mentorship of Judy Pfaff; working with Italian glass masters at Pilchuck; the influence of Pino Signoretto; his trip with Chihuly to the British Isles, which inspired his series Stone Vessels and series Standing Stones in the mid-1980s; his practice of working in series; series Petroglyph Vessels, and the beginning of narrative in his work; the importance of naiveté, experimentation, and a "confidence in innocence"; series Artifacts; the influence of Donald Lipski on Morris' installations; series Burial Urns and series Burial Rafts; series Canopic Jars; commissions for George Stroemple; the genesis of the series Rhyton; the transcendental/mythic qualities in his work; series Crow and Raven; more discussion of series Man Adorned; series Rattles; collaboration with fashion designer Donna Karan; the importance of glass as a material, and the importance of "play"; the value of an apprentice-type program; his work in bronze and with Nancy Graves; series Cinerary Urns and coming to terms with the deaths of close friends; series Mazorca; series Idolo and Idolito; series Native Species (2006); series Fish Traps; more discussion of his decision to leave glassworking; documentary film Creative Nature, 2008; "Myth, Object, and the Animal" exhibition; the adventurous spirit of the American studio glass movement, particularly in the early years; his preference for short workshops rather than longer teaching sessions; the aesthetic continuity of his work throughout his career; his appreciation of the community of collectors of glass art. He also recalls Ken Wiese, Robert and Terrie Kvenild, Bertil and Ulrica Vallien, Gary Galbraith, Stan Price, Dennis Oppenheim, Kiki Smith, Dante Marioni, Livio Seguso, Marvin Lipofsky, Benjamin Moore, Jamie Carpenter, Checco Ongaro, Lino Tagliapietra, Ricky DeMarco, Flora Mace, Joey Kirkpatrick, Trumaine Mason, Karen Willenbrink, Ross Richmond, Randy Walker, John Hauberg, Stanislav Libenský, Graham Graham, Charlie Cowles, George and Dorothy Saxe, and Jack and Rebecca Benaroya.

Oral history interview with Ed Moses, 1980 July 10-12

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 142 p.

An interview of Ed Moses conducted 1980 July 10-12, by Sheldon Figoten, for the Archives of American Art.

Moses speaks of his family background and early education; his childhood and its impact on him and his work; his U.S. Navy service; his education at Long Beach City College and at the University of California, Los Angeles; studying under Rico Lebrun; his friendships with Billy Al Bengston and John Altoon; the Ferus Gallery; environmental projects; living in Spain; the impact of the old masters; and his exhibitions. He recalls Robert Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns, and Leo Castelli.

Oral history interview with Lee Mullican, 1992 May 22-1993 Mar. 4

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 160 p.

An interview of Lee Mullican conducted 1992 May 22-1993 Mar. 4, by Paul Karlstrom for the Archives of American Art, at the artist's home/studio in Santa Monica, Calif.

Mullican speaks of his family background, childhood, and his first introductions to art; the influence of abstraction and surrealism in his work; his studies at Abilene College, University of Oklahoma, and the Kansas City Art Institute; his service in WWII; his interest in French painting, theater, opera and ballet; meeting Jack Stauffacher; the influence of Wolfgang Paalen in Mexico; and the connection between modern and primitive, and tribal art, especially in the American Indians of Mexico. He discusses his arrival in San Francisco and the art world and lifestyle there; the Dynaton group; early years in Los Angeles; his trip and exhibition in Rome; UCLA politics; his relationship to modernism and place in American art; regionalism; and the mystical and transcendental expressed in his work. He recalls Gordon Onslow-Ford, Jack Stauffacher, Peggy Guggenheim, Rachel Rosenthal, Richard Diebenkorn, David Hockney, Ed Moses, Isamu Noguchi, Sibyl Moholy-Nagy, and others.

Oral history interview with Reuben Nakian, 1981 June 9-17

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 105 p.

An interview of Reuben Nakian conducted 1981 June 9-17, by Avis Berman, for the Archives of American Art.

Nakian speaks of his childhood, growing up in New York City; his early interest in art; early ventures in sculpture; working for Paul Manship; meeting Daniel Chester French; teaching; early influences; his European travels; techniques and materials; the relationship of artists and suffering; his portrait busts of other artists; dealers he has been affiliated with, including Edith Halpert and Valentine Dudensing; animal sculptures; his Babe Ruth sculpture; critical and public reaction to his work. He recalls Constantin Brancusi, Marcel Duchamp, Raoul Hague, William Zorach, Gaston Lachaise, and J. B. Neumann. The third voice heard on the tape is that of Nakian's assistant, Don Ross, who helps prompt Nakian to recall certain incidents.

Oral history interview with Walter Nottingham, 2002 July 14-18

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 29 pages

Sound recording: 4 sound files (1 hr., 41 min.) digital, wav

An interview of Walter Nottingham conducted 2002 July 14-18, by Carol Owen, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at the studios of Idyllwild Arts, in Idyllwild, California. Nottingham speaks of his enthusiasm for basketball; being an altar boy and, as such, surrounded by beautiful fabrics at an early age; attending St. Cloud State University on the GI Bill; his teachers Jim Crane and Pauline Penning; serving as an art consultant for public schools in Jackson, Michigan; the lasting influence of an exhibition of battle flags at the Metropolitan Museum; articulating aging and decay through self-taught weaving; developing a fiber art program at University of Wisconsin, River Falls; attending Cranbrook Academy of Art and working with Glen Kaufman and Meda Johnson. He discusses specific works including his "Yahooties", that combine both his grandmother's and mother's crochet work; his trip to Mexico City on a National Endowment for the Arts grant in 1974; forming the company Off the Wall with his eldest daughter Karron and their decorative design commissions; the influence of his Catholic upbringing, oriental philosophy, and spirituality in his work; and techniques and materials. Nottingham recalls Shelly Ross, Helen Drutt, Francis Merritt, Don Miller, Lois Moran, Jack Lenor Larsen, Marianne Strengell, Mildred Constantine, Gerhardt Knodel, Lee Nordness, Ed Rossbach, and others.

Oral history interview with Frank S. Okada, 1990 Aug. 16-17

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 87 p.

An interview of Frank Okada conducted 1990 Aug. 16-17, in Seattle, Wash., by Barbara Johns, for the Archives of American Art Northwest Asian American Project. Okada discusses his parents' background; his family including his brothers, John, author of "No-No Boy," and Charlie, a graphic designer; traveling to Japan for the Pacific Northwest Artists and Japan exhibition; being in an internment camp; painting in Eugene, Ore. and Seattle, Wash.; his painting techniques; studying under Leon Derbyshire; his connection with the jazz scene in Seattle in the late 1940s and 1950s including musicians Sammy Davis, Ray Charles, and Quincy Jones; attending Cornish School of Art, Seattle; meeting Mark Tobey; comparision of his painting style to Tobey's; his stint in the Army; attending Cranbrook Academy of Art and studying with painter Fred Mitchell; his Whitney fellowship in New York; study of Japanese, Chinese, and Zen paintings; working for Boeings in the early 1960s; traveling to France on a Guggenheim; teaching at University of Oregon in Eugene; his minimalist work; influence of Japanese art in his painting. Okada mentions Lawson Inada (Asian American poet), Frank Chin (Asian American playwright), artists David Stone Martin, James Edward Peck, Yayoi Kusama, George Tsutakawa, Paul Horiuchi, Ben Shahn, Kenjiro Nomura, Louis Bunce, Bill Ivey, and art gallery owner Zoe Dusanne.

Oral history interview with Nathan Oliveira, 1978 Aug. 9-1981 Dec. 29

Archives of American Art
Transcript, 1978-1980 sessions: 92 p.

Transcript 1981 session: 28 p.

An interview of Nathan Oliveira conducted 1978 Aug. 9-1981 Dec. 29, by Paul Karlstrom, for the Archives of American Art.

Oliveira speaks of his family background and ancestry; his childhood; his education; the development of his interest in art; working as a bookbinder; his inspirations from the old masters; studying with Max Beckmann and Otis Oldfield; his U.S. Army service; working with Richard Diebenkorn; getting established in galleries as a printmaker; teaching printmaking; his European travels; living in Illinois and its effect on his career; moving to California; and meeting and working with Martha Jackson. He recalls Billy Al Bengston, Ivan Albright, and Willem de Kooning, and discusses de Kooning's influence on him.

Oliveira also speaks of subject matter in his paintings, and his departure from and his later return to the human figure; the relationship between artist and model; the importance and persistence of the figurative tradition in American art; artists he admires. He recalls Keith Boyle and Frank Lobdell.

Oral history interview with Emmy Lou Packard, 1964 May 11-12

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 39 p.

An interview of Emmy Lou Packard conducted 1964 May 11-12, by Mary Fuller McChesney, for the Archives of American Art.

Packard speaks of her early interest in art and her education; meeting Diego Rivera, studying under him; working with him on murals; Rivera's personality; his marriage to Frida Kahlo and reaction to her death; his political views and his influence on art during the 1930s. She describes her feelings about art of the Work Project Administration period, and she recalls Anton Refregier and Jose Moya del Pino.

Oral history interview with Tom Patti, 2010 January 18-19

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 77 pages

Sound recording: 6 sound files (4 hr., 47 min.) digital, wav

An interview of Tom Patti conducted 2010 January 18 and 19, by William Warmus, for the Archives of American Art's Nanette L. Laitman Documentation Project for Craft and Decorative Arts in America, at Patti's residence, in Miami Beach, Florida.

Patti talks about growing up in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, in a working-class neighborhood, and playing in and around the General Electric Corp. landfill, the major employer in the area; losing vision in one eye after a childhood accident; he recalls running with a tough crowd during high school and making homemade tattoos for his friends; his probation officer during high school, who encouraged his interest in art; meeting Norman Rockwell, who encouraged him to attend Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York; majoring in industrial design at Pratt, where he worked with Rowena Reed Kostellow; the idealism and social consciousness of the 1960s; exposure to the ideas of visionary architects such as Moshe Safdie and Buckminster Fuller; the New York art/social scene in the 1960s, including Max's Kansas City; meeting Marilyn Holtz, whom he later married; a trip to Colombia to discuss shelter development, and exposure to severe poverty; a resulting focus on people-centered shelter ideas; graduate work at Pratt, and the value of his studies in an academic environment; working with inflatable shelters, experimenting with different materials, including using glass; returning to the Berkshires in Massachusetts, working odd jobs, running a small glass school for children; becoming aware of the studio glass movement and attending a glassblowing workshop at Penland School of Crafts in Penland, North Carolina, in 1971; continued work with glass, including Vitrolite and other scavenged materials; growing public recognition in the 1970s; an internship at Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, Deer Isle, Manie, where he met Steve Feren, with whom he worked for several years; acquisition of work by the Corning Museum of Glass, Corning, New York, in 1976; first one-man gallery show in 1977; purchase of work by the Museum of Modern Art, New York, New York; series Solar Riser and the importance of a meditative/spiritual component of his work; setting up a studio in Plainfield, Massachusetts; first museum exhibition at the George Walter Vincent Smith Art Museum in Springfield, Massachusetts; speaking at the World Crafts Council conference in Vienna in the late 1970s; continued travel and recognition in Europe in the 1980s; "Genic Doran Divider-Sentinel," (1982-84), commissioned sculpture for General Electric in Pittsfield, which led to his focus on laminated materials; early 1990s studio expansion to work on a larger scale; commission work with Cesar Pelli for Owens Corning Fiberglas in 1993; one-person show at Serge Lechazynski's gallery in Biot, France; travels in Europe and Israel; serving on the board of the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, Massachusetts; consulting work with the glass and materials industry; "Spectral-Luma Ellipse" (2000); "Spatial Boundary" (2001), commissioned by Ann and Graham Gund; continued smaller-scale work; designing the window for Sienna Gallery in Lenox, Massachusetts, owned by his daughter; recent commissions including "Morton Square" in 2004, the Roosevelt Avenue Intermodal Station (2004), both in New York City, and "Miami Rain" (2009), Miami, Florida; and the importance of transparency, opacity, and translucency in his work. He also recalls Joseph Parriott, Sybil Moholy-Nagy, Rudolf Arnheim, Art Wood, Thomas Buechner, Doug Heller, Penelope Hunter-Stiebel, Laurie Wagman and Irvin Borowsky, and Malcolm Rogers.

Oral history interview with James Penney, 1981 August 21-December 6

Archives of American Art
2 sound tape reels (3 hr., 9 min.)

Transcript 79 p.

Interview of James Penney, conducted by Robert F. Brown for the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, in Clinton, New York, on August 21 and December 6, 1981.

Penney speaks of growing up in Missouri and Kansas; taking art classes at the University of Kansas; moving to New York during the Depression to pursue his art career; studying at the Art Students League; meeting his first wife, Frances Avery; exhibiting his paintings in New York; visiting museums; mural painting with the WPA; working for the Jordanoff Aviation Corporation during World War II; teaching at Bennington, the Munson-Williams-Proctor Institute, and Hamilton College; and some of his paintings, including An Epidemic Next Year; Workers in the Snow, Central Park; The Bombed City, 1939; and Rock of Versailles. Penney also recalls Karl Mattern, Raymond Eastwood, Albert Bloch, Randall Brubaker, Chris Ritter, Jackson Pollock, Thomas Hart Benton, George Grosz, Moses Soyer, Stuart Davis, Burgoyne Diller, Bill Palmer, and others.

Oral history interview with Charles Rand Penney, 1981 Aug. 14-16

Archives of American Art
Transcript: 73 pages.

An interview of Charles Rand Penney conducted 1981 Aug. 14-16, by Robert F. Brown, for the Archives of American Art.

Penney speaks of his childhood in Buffalo, N.Y.; his education at Yale; his early interest in prints, especially Emil Ganso's work; his acquaintance with and patronage of Charles Burchfield; the expansion of his collection during the 1960s; the establishment of an educational foundation; and his patronage of artists in western New York.
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