Richard J. Powell papers, 1971-1992

A Finding Aid to the Richard J. Powell Papers, 1971-1992, in the Archives of American Art, by Barbara Aikens

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Table of Contents:



Biographical Information

Art historian, Durham, North Carolina. Powell curated the exhibition Homecoming: William H. Johnson and Afro-America, 1938-1946, at the National Museum of American Art, 1991-1992.

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Overview of the Collection

Scope and Contents

Papers, 1980-1992, mostly concerning art historian Richard Powell's research and writings on painter William H. Johnson (1901-1970). Found is Powell's correspondence with Robert Baehr, Sigrid Bondo, Adelyn Breeskin, David C. Driskell, Michel Fabre, Robert Ferris Thompson, Øystein Hjort, Margo Humphrey, Gregers Krake, Richard A. Long, Torben Lundbæk, Virginia Mecklenburg, Jostein Nerbøvik, Mette Nørredam, James Parker, Jules D. Prown, Kjetil Tandstad, Judith Wilson, Debbie Wood, and Danish and Scandinavian museums and associations. There are also two illustrated research/travel journals containing Powell's comments on Johnson's works of art, related thoughts, slide lists, notes from his lectures at the Sorbonne in Paris, and other experiences dating from July 14 to November 28, 1984, and January 1 to June 20, 1985; two wall calendars, 1984-1985, noting appointments and exhibition openings; a notebook, loose notes and other writings; postcards, reseach files that contain photocopies of printed material and other primary documents about Johnson including clippings from foreign newspapers with translations; printed material concerning the exhibition Homecoming: William H. Johnson and Afro-America, 1938-1946, curated by Powell at the National Museum of American Art, 1991-1992; photographs (copy prints, contact prints, and negatives) of Johnson and his artwork; and miscellany.

Arrangement and Series Description

Subjects and Names

This collection is indexed in the online catalog of the Archives of American Art under the following terms.

Subjects:

  • Johnson, William H., 1901-1970

Subjects-Topical:

  • African American artists -- Exhibitions
  • Art historians -- Washington (D.C.)
  • African American artists

Types of Materials:

  • Travel journals

Provenance

Richard Powell collected this material while conducting research on William H. Johnson. He donated it to the Archives of American Art in July, 2000.

How the Collection was Processed

A volunteer completed preliminary processing of the collection in 2002. In 2004, Barbara Aikens completed minimal arrangement and organization of the papers and a finding aid.


How to Use the Collection

Restrictions on Use

The collection is open for research. Use requires an appointment.

Ownership & Literary Rights

The Richard J. Powell papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.

How to Cite this Collection

Richard J. Powell papers, 1971-1992. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

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Detailed Description and Container Inventory

Series 1: Research and Project Correspondence, 1981-1991
(Box 1; 19 folders)

Correspondence concerning Powell's travels, his research, dissertation, and exhibition planning. Correspondents include Robert Baehr, Sigrid Bondo, Adelyn Breeskin, David C. Driskell, Michel Fabre, Robert Ferris Thompson, Øystein Hjort, Margo Humphrey, Gregers Krake, Richard A. Long, Torben Lundbæk, Virginia Mecklenburg, Jostein Nerbøvik, Mette Nørredam, James Parker, Jules D. Prown, Kjetil Tandstad, Judith Wilson, Debbie Wood, and Danish and Scandinavian museums and associations.

Box
1 Early Correspondence, 1981-1983
1 Personal Correspondence, 1984-1991
(3 folders)
1 Correspondence regarding William H. Johnson Monograph and Research, 1985-1991
1 Correspondence regarding Dissertation, 1986-1988
1 Correspondence with Contacts in Denmark and Norway, 1983-1984
1 Correspondence regarding Residency Permit in Denmark, 1984
1 Correspondence with Contacts in the U.S., 1983-1984
1 Correspondence regarding Fulbright Grant, 1983-1985
1 Correspondence regarding Lectures in Europe, 1984-1985
1 Correspondence regarding Travel Arrangements, 1984-1985
(2 folders)
1 Correspondence regarding Research (includes research notes), 1984-1991
(5 folders)
1 Correspondence and Proposal for Book and Exhibition, circa 1989

Series 2: Travel and Research Journals and Notes, 1984-1985, 1991, undated
(Box 1; 5 folders)

Found are two illustrated research/travel journals containing Powell's comments on Johnson's works of art, related thoughts, slide lists, notes from his lectures at the Sorbonne in Paris, and other experiences dating from July 14 to November 28, 1984, and January 1 to June 20, 1985; two wall calendars, 1984-1985, noting appointments and exhibition openings; a notebook, loose notes and other writings.

Box
1 Travel and Research Journals, 1984-1985
(2 folders)
1 Research Notebook, circa 1989
1 Notes, undated
1 Calendars, 1984-1985

Series 3: Printed Material, 1971-1992, undated
(Box 1; 9 folders)

Found are photocopies of printed materials, as well as magazine and newspaper clippings, and postcards.

Box
1 Postcards, undated
1 Printed Materials, 1971-1992
(8 folders)

Series 4: Research Files on William H. Johnson, undated
(Box 1; 10 folders)

Research files composed by Powell concerning William H. Johnson and family. Files contain mixed printed materials and numerous photocopies from archival research repositories.

Box
1 Research Files, undated
(10 folders)

Series 5: Photographs and Negatives, undated
(Box 1; 4 folders)

Photographs (copy prints, contact prints, and negatives) of William H. Johnson and his artwork.

Box
1 Photographs of William H. Johnson and his Artwork, undated
(3 folders)
1 Negatives, undated