A Finding Aid to the Adela Akers Papers,
1960-2009, in the Archives of American Art, by Erin Kinhart
Table of Contents:
- Biographical Information
- Overview of the Collection
- How to Use the Collection
- Detailed Description and Container Inventory
Adela Akers (1933- ) is a fiber artist and educator living and working in Guerneville, California.
Akers was born in Santiago de Compostela, Spain, and was raised in Havana, Cuba. She came to the United States as a student in 1957 and studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Cranbrook Academy of Art. In 1965 she served as a weaving advisor in Peru for the Alliance for Progress and was an artist in residence at Penland School of Crafts from 1968-1970. From 1972 to 1995 Akers was a professor and chair of fiber arts at the Tyler School of Art at Temple University in Philadelphia. Her weavings consist of zigzags, checkerboard patterns, and simple geometric shapes.
Overview of the Collection
Scope and Contents
The papers of fiber artist and educator Adela Akers measure 2.6 linear feet and date from 1960 to 2009. Her career as an artist and her tenure at the Tyler School of Art, Temple University, are documented through scattered biographical material; correspondence; subject files on galleries, projects, weaving technique, research, workshops, and fiber arts organizations; writings; exhibition announcements, clippings, and other printed material; photographs; and artwork, including one sketchbook.
Arrangement and Series Description
The collection is arranged as 7 series:
- Series 1: Biographical Material, 1970s, 1991-1998 (Box 1; 3 folders)
- Series 2: Correspondence, 1985-1987 (Box 1; 3 folders)
- Series 3: Subject Files, 1960-2007 (Box 1; 0.6 linear feet)
- Series 4: Writings, 1973-1995 (Box 1; 3 folders)
- Series 5: Printed Material, 1962-2009 (Box 1-2, 6; 6 folders)
- Series 6: Photographic Materials, 1960-2008 (Box 2-3; 0.4 linear feet)
- Series 7: Artwork, circa 1960s-1980s (Box 3-6, OV 7; 1.1 linear feet)
Subjects and Names
This collection is indexed in the online catalog of the Archives of American Art under the following terms:
- Fiber artists--California
Types of Materials:
- Tyler School of Art
The collection was donated in 2009 and 2011 by Adela Akers.
Separated and Related Materials
Also found at the Archives of American Art is an oral history interview with Adela Akers, 2008 Mar. 4-6, conducted by Mija Riedel.
How the Collection was Processed
The collection was processed to a minimal level in 2012 by Erin Kinhart.
How to Use the Collection
Restrictions on Use
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Ownership & Literary Rights
The Adela Akers papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
How to Cite this Collection
Adela Akers papers, 1960-2009. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Detailed Description and Container Inventory
Biographical Material, 1970s, 1991-1998
(Box 1; 3 folders)
Found here are scattered employment records from Akers's tenure in the Craft Department at Tyler School of Art, one award certificate, and several draft versions of her resume.
|1||1||Employment Records, Tyler School of Art, 1991-1997|
|1||3||Temple University Faculty Award for Creative Achievement, 1995, 1998|
(Box 1; 3 folders)
Correspondence documents Akers's professional dealings with art galleries, museums, organizations, and services, from 1985-1987. Researchers should note that additional correspondence is included in Series 3: Subject Files.
Correspondence is arranged in rough chronological order.
Subject Files, 1960-2007
(Box 1; 0.6 linear feet)
Found here are subject files which Akers maintained to document her work with galleries and fiber arts organizations, exhibitions, lectures and workshops, and commissioned projects. Also found are files on weaving technique and research on other fiber artists. Files may include correspondence, notes, printed material, agreements, lists of artwork, and a few scattered photographs.
Files are arranged alphabetically. Akers's original folder titles were maintained.
|1||7||Adelle M. Fine Arts, 1978-1989|
|1||8||Advanced Weaving, circa 1987|
|1||9||American Craft Museum, 1985-1993|
|1||10||The Art Exchange, 1989-1994|
|1||11||Arts Benicia, 1996-1997|
|1||12||Columbus Cultural Arts Center, 1988-1989|
|1||13||Connecticut Commission on the Arts, 1984-1989|
|1||14||Crieger Associaties, 1982-1989|
|1||15||Double Weave, 1960-1970s|
|1||16||Felting, circa 1970s-1993|
|1||17||Fiberworks, Center for the Textile Arts, 1979-1981|
|1||18||Fiberworks Symposium, 1978-1979|
|1||19||Galman Lepow Associates, 1989-1993|
|1||20||Guatemala, circa 1970s|
|1||21||Helen Drutt Gallery, 1987-1992|
Lectures and Workshops, 1967-1971, circa 1979
|1||24||Library Tapestry, 2000|
Lonny Gans and Associates, 1982-1990
|1||27||NEA International Fellowships, 1995-1996|
|1||28||Netting, circa 1980s-1990s|
Patrick King Contemporary Art, 1981-1991
|1||31||Plaiting, circa 1970s-1980s|
|1||32||Rhode Island School of Design, 1980-1981|
|1||33||Study Leave Research, Neda Al-Hilali, circa 1982|
|1||34||Study Leave Research, Francoise Grossen, 1976-1978|
|1||35||Study Leave Research, Cynthia Schira, 1988|
|1||36||Study Leave Research, Joanne Segal Brandford, circa 1979|
|1||37||Temple University Research Grants, 1975-1994|
Thirteen Moons Gallery, 2002-2007
|1||40||Tyler School of Art Grant Reports, 1979-1989|
|1||41||University Hospital of Cleveland, 1990-1991|
|1||42||Weaving Techniques, circa 1970s|
(Box 1; 3 folders)
Writings consist of loose notes on weaving and one weaving notebook. Both contain notes, diagrams, illustrations, and lists. The weaving notebook also includes attached fiber samples.
The weaving notebook was removed from a three-ring binder and the original order of the pages has been maintained.
Weaving Notebook, 1985-1995
Printed Material, 1962-2009
(Box 1-2, 6; 6 folders)
Printed material consists of exhibition catalogs and announcements, news clippings and magazines containing mentions of Akers, and one publication regarding Akers's work for the Alliance for Progress program in Peru.
|1||46||Catalogs, 1968, 1994-2006|
|2||1||Exhibition Announcements, circa 1986-2009|
News Clippings, 1962-1995
|6||2||"Adela Akers and the Weavers of Huhi," 1966|
Photographic Materials, 1960-2008
(Box 2-3; 0.4 linear feet)
Photographs depict Adela Akers working in her studio, an exhibition installation and opening at Shop One Gallery, artworks in progresss, and weavings by Akers. Also found are digital photographs, negatives, transparencies, and slides of her artwork.
|2||5||Photographs of Adela Akers, 1960-1990|
|2||6||Photographs of Home and Studio, 1972-1981|
|2||7||Photographs of Shop One Gallery, 1971|
|2||8||Photographs of Works in Progress, 2007-2008|
Photographs of Artwork, 1967-1990
Digital Photographs of Artwork, 2004-2007
(six data disks)
|2||13||Negatives and Transparencies, circa 1970s-1980s|
Artwork, circa 1960s-1980s
(Box 3-6, OV 7; 1.1 linear feet)
Artwork by Akers consists of one bound sketchbook, three three-dimensional studies, and 32 color studies for her weavings.
|3||4||Sketchbook, circa 1960s-1970s|
|4||1||"Proposal #1," circa 1980s|
|5||1||"Proposal #2," circa 1980s|
|6||1||"Proposal #1," circa 1980s|
|OV 7||Color Studies, circa 1980s|