Esphyr Slobodkina papers, circa 1925-1995

Slobodkina, Esphyr, b. 1908 d. 2002
Painter, Sculptor, Author, Illustrator
Active in New York, N.Y.; Fla.

Collection size: 1.7 linear feet

Collection Summary: The papers of painter, sculptor, author, and illustrator Esphyr Slobodkina measure 1.7 linear feet and date from circa 1925 to 1995. Found within the papers are personal and professional correspondence, including letters from Ilya Bolotowsky, George L.K. Morris, and Paul Kelpe; writings, including a copy of the autobiography, "Notes for a Biographer," (vol. 1); printed materials; photographs; and material on the American Abstract Artists, including administrative records, business correspondence, and publications.

Biographical/Historical Note: Painter, sculptor, author, and illustrator Esphyr Slobodkina (1908-2002) lived and worked in New York City, Great Neck, and Long Island, New York and was known for her abstract art and her children's books, including the seminal "Caps For Sale."

Esphyr Slobodkina donated a portion of her papers in 1970, and made additional multiple gifts between 1995 and 1996.

Processing of this collection was funded by the Terra Foundation for American Art 2013 September 18.

How to Use this Collection

  • Read the Finding Aid for this collection
  • Portions of this collection are available on 35 mm microfilm reels N70-54 and N70-55 at the Archives of American Art offices and affliate research centers. The film is also available for interlibrary library loan but researchers should note that the film is incomplete and the arrangement of the papers as described in this finding aid does not reflect the order of the collection on microfilm due to reprocessing.
  • Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
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Related Materials

The Archives also holds the American Abstract Artists records.
Originals of material loaned for microfilming, including a travel album, printed material, notes, McDowell colony correspondence, and an American Abstract Artists financial ledger, were returned to Slobodkina in 1970. Loaned material is available on reels N70-61, but is not described in the container listing of this finding aid. Additionally, 69 rolled drawings on tracing paper were transferred to Hillwood Art Museum in 2006.