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José de Creeft papers, ,1871-2004, bulk 1910s-1980s

De Creeft, José, b. 1884 d. 1982
Painter, Educator, Sculptor
Active in New York, N.Y.

Collection size: 27.2 linear feet

Collection Summary: Biographical data; business files; writings; correspondence; photographs and photograph albums; subject files; project files; a card catalog; artwork; an interview transcript; printed material and miscellaneous.

Biographical material include passports, genealogical charts, travel and emigration documents, and award certificates.

Business files include membership in art organizations, and files on dealers and galleries, including The Contemporaries, Galeria Sudamericana, and the Passedoit Gallery.

Writings include artists statements, 47 illustrated diaries covering the period 1926 to 1981 (lacking 1930), notebooks, loose sheets (some illustrated), typed manuscripts; typescript of de Creeft's essay "Roosty Was My Friend", 1957 and drafts for "The Scultpure of Jose de Creeft" by Jules Campos.

Correspondence concerns exhibitions and de Creeft's involvement in art organizations and awards; letters from friends and students, Joseph Escudar, and Gil Gomez; letters concerning De Creeft's teaching career; letters and greeting cards from friends and colleagues, including Alexander Calder, Hunt Diederich, Jacques Lipchitz, Edwin Dickinson, James Johnson Sweeney, Costantino Nivola, Abraham Rattner, and Lamar Dodd, among others.

Photographs and photograph albums are of de Creeft, his family, friends, including Alexander Calder, and works of art. Included are de Creeft with friends in Paris; de Creeft and his wife Lorrie Goulet with Raphael Soyer, posing with Soyer's portrait of them; Gertrude Lawrence; art juries, which include Chaim Gross, Jacques Lipchitz, Theodore Roszak, and William Zorach; students, friends, and faculties of Black Mountain College, Art Students League, Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, and the Norton School of Art, including Joseph Albers, Alexander Calder, Julio De Diego, Walter Gropius, J. B. Neumann, and Abraham Rattner, among others.

Subject and project files containing letters and printed material concerning the New School for Social Research, 1936-1964, Norton Gallery and School of Art, 1940-1963, Black Mountain College, 1945-1970, Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, 1948-1958, and the Art Students League, 1959-1980; project files for Poet, 1951, Stone Mountain Cconfederate Memorial, 1961-1963, and Alice in Wonderland and an index card catalog of de Creeft's works of art.

Artwork includes sketches by de Creeft. Financial material includes price lists and receipts. Printed material includes clippings and scrapbooks of clippings, a scrapbook on De Creeft compiled by Rosamund Frost; a galley proof for "Statement on Sculpture" by de Creeft, 1972; exhibition announcements and catalogs, and a poster. An interview transcript with de Creeft conducted by Jules Campos. Miscellaneous material includes address books; an engagement calendar containing very brief annotations by de Creeft's first wife Alice Robertson Carr.

Biographical/Historical Note: José de Creeft (1884-1982) was a sculptor from New York, N.Y. Born in Guadalajara, Spain and raised in Barcelona. He studied at the Academie Julian, emigrated to the United States, becoming a citizen in 1940, and taught at the Black Mountain College and at the Art Students League.

Material on reels D150 and 375-378 was lent for microfilming in 1963 and 1972 by José de Creeft. Portions of this filmed material, and additional unfilmed material were donated in 1985 and in 2009 by Lorrie Goulet, de Creeft's widow.

How to Use this Collection

  • Microfilm reels D150 and 375-378 available at Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan.
  • Use of original papers requires an appointment.
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