Arnason, H. Harvard,
Art historian, Arts administrator, Author
Sound recording: 1 sound tape reel ; 7 in.
Transcript: 44 p.
Collection Summary: An interview of H. Harvard Arnason conducted 1970 Mar. 3-9, by Paul Cummings, for the Archives of American Art. Arnason speaks of his family and educational background; the influence of the WPA Federal Art Project on museums; lecturing at the Frick Collection and Hunter College; his work as U.S. representative of UNESCO; his teaching positions and his roles as director of the Walker Art Center and trustee and vice president of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation. He comments on Frank Lloyd Wright's design for the Guggenheim Museum building; competition among New York museums; conceptual art and museums; and the museum as a research center. He recalls Holger Cahill, Thomas M. Messer, Hilla Rebay, James Johnson Sweeney and others. Arnason also describes his writing projects, including his HISTORY OF MODERN ART.
Biographical/Historical Note: H. Harvard Arnason (1909-1986) was an historian, writer, and a former director of the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, Minn.
This interview is part of the Archives' Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and others.