Elliot Orr papers, 1910-1984

Orr, Elliot, b. 1904 d. 1997
Painter
Active in Chatham, Mass.

Collection size: 1.4 linear ft. (partially microfilmed on 2 reels)

Collection Summary: Correspondence (1929-1984), a price list, subject files, notes, writings, art works (1929-1935), scrapbooks, printed material (1931-1984), and photographs document the life and career of Elliot Orr.

Reel D23 (frames 905-1246): One hundred twenty-five letters exchanged between Orr, his wife Elizabeth, and Frederic Fairchild Sherman discuss their art work (1934-1940). Other materials consist of a 6-page typescript, ELLIOT ORR: A CONTEMPORARY AMERICAN PAINTER, by Marchal Landgren and an exhibition catalog for Orr (1936). A scrapbook about Frederic Fairchild Sherman contains clippings, photographs of works of art and illustrated poems by Sherman (1938-1940).

Reel 497: Letters were exchanged between Elliot Orr and his colleagues, dealers, galleries, and purchasers. Correspondents include Lester Burbank Bridaham, Marchal Landgren, Macbeth Gallery, Vose Galleries, Whitney Museum of American Art, and Wildenstein Galleries (1935-1955). Other materials consist of a curriculum vitae (1938), a Christmas card (1935), a clipping, and 3 exhibition catalogs (1938-1956).

Unfilmed: Correspondence, primarily between Orr, his family, and his colleagues including Frederic Fairchild Sherman (1929-1984), includes one letter with a sketch of "Andrews Mill and Farm". Subject files contain letters, printed material, and photographs concerning Orr's work for the Federal Art Project of Massachusetts (1938-1974) and the auction of Orr's collection of primitive art (1961-1969). Other materials consist of lists of works of art, a hand-made book, SONNETS, containing poems by Sherman and illustrated by Orr (1940), and a price list of works consigned to the Munson Gallery (1972).

Unfilmed: Art works include 6 studies for Orr's painting MacDOUGAL STREET (1935) and a sketch of Orr by Eugene Thomason (1929). Three scrapbooks contain letters, clippings, and exhibition announcements and catalogs (1928-1942). Printed material includes clippings (1931-1984), exhibition catalogs (1934-1984), and 2 books, ROMANTIC PAINTING IN AMERICA (1943) and AMERICAN WATER COLORS, DRAWINGS, AND PRINTS (1952), which contain reproductions of Orr's works. An album contains photographs of Orr, his family, home, and studio (1910-1957). Other photographs show Frederic Fairchild Sherman (1940) and Orr's works of art.

Biographical/Historical Note: Painter; Chatham, Massachusetts. Born Flushing, New York. In 1927, Orr was a student of Charles Hawthorne in Provincetown, Massachusetts, and from 1927 to 1929, he studied at the Grand Central School of Art in New York under George Pierce Ennis, Henry B. Snell, and Wayman Adams. From 1929 to 1930 he studied under George Luks.

Portions of material on D23 (fr. 905-1214) lent for microfilming 1962; portions of material on D23 (fr. 1215-1246), reel 497 and unmicrofilmed donated 1971-1984 all by Elliot Orr.

How to Use this Collection

  • Microfilm reels D23 and 497 available for use at Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan.
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