David Tolerton papers, 1912-1987

Tolerton, David, b. 1907
Sculptor
Active in Calif.

Collection size: 0.2 linear ft. (on 1 microfilm reel)
ADDITION: 1.3 linear ft.

Collection Summary: Exhibition announcements and catalogs, undated and 1939-1961; report on "Improving Scenic Coast Route", 1959; a clipping, 1954; a photograph of Tolerton; and 6 photographs of his sculpture.

ADDITION: Photos (personal and artwork), catalogs, correspondence, and a scrapbook of clipping. Also included are brochures of shows of graphic art and a portfolio from the Hill Gallery, San Francisco, operated by Tolerton's father.

Biographical/Historical Note: Sculptor, Mill Valley, California. Tolerton was born on January 11, 1907 in Toledo, Ohio, and died on June 20, 2000 in Mill Valley, California. Tolerton moved as a child to California where he later studied art at Stanford University and at the California School of Fine Arts in San Francisco. During his early career he fabricated ornamental ironwork (railings, brackets, furniture), working with Berkeley Metal Arts and the Allied Arts Guild in Menlo Park. This interest was reinforced by a 1929-30 trip to France, Spain, Italy, and Germany for the purpose of studying the ancient art of ironwork. He From 1932 to 1942 he made wheel-thrown pottery before turning in the late 1940s to the monumental iron (and other metal) sculpture for which he became best known. In 1956 he had a solo show at the M.H. de Young Memorial Museum. He also created the first major outdoor sculpture, a bronze fountain at Crown Zellerbach Plaza, in downtown San Francisco following World War II. At one time a resident of Big Sur, he spent the latter part of his life working in a studio in Mill Valley.

Donated 1977 by David Tolerton and in 2001 by his widow, Sally Tolerton.

How to Use this Collection

  • Microfilm reel 3891 available at Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan.
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