Robert Bruce Inverarity papers, circa 1840s-1997

A Finding Aid to the Robert Bruce Inverarity Papers, circa 1840s-1997, in the Archives of American Art, by Catherine S. Gaines

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Table of Contents:

Biographical Information

Robert Bruce Inverarity (1909-1999) showed artistic leanings as a boy, and from an early age was fascinated by puppetry and Northwest Coast native culture. During much of his youth, Inverarity's family lived in Canada, but returned to their native Seattle when he was a teenager. After graduating from high school, he made a 500 mile journey on foot along the coasts of the Vancouver Islands, collecting Indian artifacts and studying the area's tribal legends.

He studied briefly with Mark Tobey in Seattle, where the two shared a studio; when Tobey departed for Chicago, Inverarity succeeded him as an art teacher at the Cornish School. He spent the next few years in California working as an artist, exhibiting, and occasionally teaching. From there, he moved to Vancouver where he was Director of the School of Creative Art. In 1932, Inverarity made a three month trip to the Queen Charlotte Islands, British Columbia, for the purpose of studying the Haida Indians.

Upon his return to the United States in 1933, Inverarity joined the University of Washington Drama School as a puppetry instructor; in 1938 he published a highly regarded Manual of Puppetry. During 1936-37, he took a leave of absence from the university to assume the position of State Director of the Federal Art Project, where he remained until 1939. He then became State Director of the Art and Crafts Project (1939-1941). The U.S. Navy appointed Inverarity Chief of Design for Camouflage (1941-1943) and he later served as an Official Navy War Artist (1943-1945).

During his early years as a teacher and administrator, Inverarity continued making art and participated in a wide variety of exhibitions. He published a portfolio, 12 Photographs by R. B. Inverarity (1940). In the following year, Movable Masks and Figures of the North Pacific Coast Indians, a portfolio of his watercolors reproduced as silkscreen prints, appeared. Although Inverarity stopped exhibiting in 1941, he continued to produce art; notable work of this period includes photographic portraits of a number of artist friends (Max Ernst, Dorothea Tanning, Marcel Duchamp, and Man Ray).

After World War II, Inverarity completed his formal education. He earned a Bachelor's degree in art and anthropology from the University of Washington (1946), and then studied with Hilaire Hiler at Freemont University in Los Angeles, where he was awarded a Master's degree in fine arts (1947) and a Ph.D. (1948).

Inverarity began his museum career in 1949 when he was appointed the first director of the Museum of International Folk Art in Santa Fe, New Mexico, a position that combined his interest in, and knowledge of, anthropology and art. While in Santa Fe, he published Art of the North West Coast Indians (1950). During his five year tenure as director, the museum participated in a pilot study for coding visual files, a project of the anthropological group, Human Resources Area Files, Inc. When Inverarity was dismissed from the Museum of International Folk Art in 1954, most of the staff resigned in protest, and the American Association of Museums investigated the situation.

Inverarity then became the first director of the Adirondack Museum, Blue Mountain Lake, New York, where he remained for eleven years. In addition to planning the museum's building, and developing collections and programs, Inverarity continued his involvement with the visual files project of the Human Resources Area Files, Inc., studying information storage and retrieval, developing a "microreader," and publishing Visual Files Coding Index (1960). In addition, he published many articles on a variety of topics and was active in organizations for anthropologists and museum professionals.

After his 1965 departure from the Adirondack Museum, Inverarity went to California and worked as an illustrator and book designer at the University of California Press. He returned to the east coast in 1969 to assume the directorship of the Philadelphia Maritime Museum. During this period, he remained active in professional associations and traveled to study museums abroad. He retired in 1976 and moved to La Jolla, California.

Robert Bruce Inverarity died in 1999.

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Overview of the Collection

Scope and Contents

The papers of artist, photographer, museum director, anthropologist, and writer Robert Bruce Inverarity are dated circa 1840s-1997 and measure 13.8 linear feet. Biographical information, correspondence, writings and notes, subject files, art work, scrapbooks, sound recordings, printed material and photographs are found within the papers. They document Inverarity's work as Director of the Federal Art Project in Seattle and Director of the Art and Craft Project for the State of Washington, as well as his other professional work. Nineteenth century material consists of a Japanese print, printed material, and photographs.

Among the biographical information are awards and certificates, biographical and genealogical notes, and educational records. Correspondence concerns Inverarity's activities as Director of the WPA Federal Arts Project in Washington State, 1936-1941. Additional personal and professional correspondence, 1929-1993, documents his activities as a museum director, consultant, collector, and writer. Among the friends and colleagues with whom he corresponded are: Max Ernst and Dorothea Tanning, Rockwell and Sally Kent, Stanton MacDonald-Wright, Wolfgang Palen, Juliet and Man Ray, Mark Tobey, Edward Weston, and various individuals associated with the WPA.

Manuscripts of a few of Inverarity's many articles on topics such as anthropology, museology, and information storage and retrieval are among his writings and notes. Also included are the manuscript of an unpublished book, Tobey Remembered, along with drafts, notes, correspondence, research materials, and photocopies of Tobey's letters to him and others. Other writings consist of book reviews, children's books, a catalog of the Inverarity Collection, and a copy of his 1946 master's thesis, "The Social-Economic Position of the American Artist." Several journals, 1928-1966, survive, including one that records his 1932 trip to study the Haida Indians of the Queen Charlotte Islands.

Subject files include general subjects such as "Folk Art" and "Preservation." Files on the museums where Inverarity was the director contain some official records as well as general information. Art work by Inverarity includes eight volumes of sketch books, 1928-1942, commercial work for Boeing, notes and drawings for book designs. Among the work by other artists are drawings, paintings and prints by friends. Of particular interest are display panels for a small exhibit on airbrush stencil prints produced by the Washington State WPA Federal Art Project. Other noteworthy items are pencil sketches and a watercolor by Mark Tobey, and prints by Hiroshige and Jan Matulka.

Five scrapbooks, 1928-1979, contain newspaper clippings, miscellaneous printed items, and a small number of photographs and letters. Three volumes document his career as an artist and museum director. One consists of biographical information and items designed by Inverarity, and another concerns publication and marketing of his monograph Art of the Northwest Coast Indians.

Sound recordings consist of interviews and conversations. An extensive interview with Inverarity about his life and career was conducted by Craig Gilborn in 1990. Bruce and Jane Inverarity in conversation with former colleague Ernie Johnson and his wife Helen about his departure from the Museum of International Folk Art were recorded in 1980. Also included is a 1981 conversation with Grace T. Stevenson containing references to Mark Tobey and Morris Graves.

Printed material includes many items about or produced by the WPA Federal Art Project. Among the items written by Inverarity are many articles on a wide variety of topics, his book Art of the Northwest Coast Indians, and two published portfolios. Printed material by other authors includes articles, books and reports about or mentioning Inverarity, and books designed or illustrated by him. Among the miscellaneous printed items are catalogs and brochures of the schools where Inverarity taught and studied, and a few ephemeral items designed by him.

Photographs are of art work, people, places, the Washington State WPA Federal Art Project, and miscellaneous subjects. All photographs known to be by Inverarity are clearly marked. Art work includes views of Inverarity's collection of his own work and that of other artists hanging in his home. Photographs of people include artists, friends, colleagues, and various groups. Of special interest are Inverarity's portraits of artists, among them Marcel Duchamp, Max Ernst, Morris Graves, Hilaire Hiler, Rico Le Brun, Stanton MacDonald-Wright, Man Ray, Dorothea Tanning, and Mark Tobey. Photographs of places include the museums where Inverarity was director, places in which he lived, and travel pictures. Of note are a large group of photographs (copy prints) taken in 1932 while studying the Haida Indians in British Columbia. Nineteenth century photographs of family homes, Europe, and South America may have been taken by his father. Photographs of the Washington State WPA Federal Arts Project are of individual works of art, exhibition installations, mosaic procedures and local art centers. Many, probably intended for display, are mounted in groups on large cardboard panels. Miscellaneous subjects include art photographs by Inverarity and the microreader he invented.

Arrangement and Series Description

The collection is arranged as nine series. Correspondence is in chronological order, Biographical Information and Subject Files are arranged alphabetically by folder title. Other series have been organized into subseries and arrangement is as described in the Series Descriptions/Container List below. Unless noted otherwise, material within folders is arranged chronologically.

Subjects and Names

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

  • Deutsch, Hilda, 1911-
  • Duchamp, Marcel, 1887-1968 -- Photographs
  • Federal Art Project (Calif.)
  • Federal Art Project (Ill.)
  • Federal Art Project (Iowa)
  • Federal Art Project (N.Y.)
  • Federal Art Project (Or.)
  • Federal Art Project (Utah)
  • Federal Art Project (Wash.)
  • Graves, Morris, 1910- -- Photographs
  • Morris, Carl, 1911-1993
  • Museum of International Folk Art (N.M.)
  • Ray, Man, 1890-1976 -- Photographs
  • Tobey, Mark
  • Art and state--Washington (State)
  • Arts administrators
  • Drawings
  • Federal aid to the arts--Washington (State)
  • Interviews
  • New Deal, 1933-1939--Washington (State)
  • Painters
  • Photographs
  • Puppet theater
  • Scrapbooks
  • Sketchbooks
  • Sound recordings
  • United States--Economic conditions, 1918-1945--Washington (State)
  • Works of art


Robert Bruce Inverarity donated his papers to the Archives in several installments between 1965 and 1993. Additional papers were received from his estate in 1999. He also loaned a small number of additional drawings and sketches for microfilming which were returned to him. A few of these drawings were included with the papers he subsequently donated to the Archives of American Art.

Separated and Related Materials

Originals of most of the drawings and sketches loaned by Mr. Inverarity were returned to him after filming and were not subsequently donated. This material is available on 35 mm microfilm reel D/NDA/I, frames 392-409.

How the Collection was Processed

The collection received minimal processing at some point after donation and portions of it were filmed on reels 1121, 1130, D/NDA/1 and NDA-16. The entire collection was fully processed, arranged and described by Catherine S. Gaines in 2005. Researchers should note that the arrangement of the collection as described in this finding aid may not reflect the order of the collection on microfilm.

How to Use the Collection

Restrictions on Use

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

Ownership & Literary Rights

The Robert Bruce Inverarity 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.

Available Formats

A portion of the collection is available on 35 mm microfilm reels 1121, 1130, D/NDA/I and NDA-16 at Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan.

How to Cite this Collection

Robert Bruce Inverarity papers, circa 1840s-1997. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

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Detailed Description and Container Inventory

Series 1: Biographical Information, 1934-1997, undated
(Box 1, OV 18; 0.25 linear ft.)

Box Folder
1 1 Awards and Certificates, 1934-1972
1 2 Biographical Notes, Jane Inverarity (wife), undated
1 3 Biographical Notes, Robert Bruce Inverarity, 1957-1997, undated
1 4 Driver's License, 1929
1 5 Educational Records, 1946-1948
1 6 Genealogical Notes, 1987, undated
1 7 Identification Badges, U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard, 1942-1945
1 8 Membership Cards, 1934-1972, undated
1 9 Selective Service Registration, 1945, undated
OV 16 Awards and Certificates, 1947 and 1959

Series 2: Correspondence, 1928-1993, undated
(Box 1; 0.75 linear ft.)

Personal correspondence regarding Inverarity's activities as Washington State director of the WPA Federal Art Project, 1936-1941, along with other correspondence from the same period not directly relating to the WPA and miscellaneous undated correspondence, has been microfilmed on Reel NDA-16. Additional personal and professional correspondence, 1929-1993 and undated has not been microfilmed. Among this correspondence are a very small number of letters addressed to his wife, Jane. Correspondents include their daughter, friends, and colleagues, among them: Max Ernst, Dorothea Tanning, Rockwell and Sally Kent, Stanton Macdonald-Wright, Wolfgang Palen, Juliet and Man Ray, Mark Tobey, Edward Weston, and various individuals associated with the W.P.A. Business correspondence concerns appraisals and consulting work, publications, conferences, the Museum of International Folk Art, the Adirondack Museum, and the Philadelphia Maritime Museum.

Please note that many subject files (Series 4) also contain correspondence.

Box Folder
1 10-14 Correspondence, 1936-1942, undated
1 15-21 Correspondence, 1929-1993, undated
1 22 Carr, Emily, 1928-1944, undated
1 23 Dunn, Kwei, 1928-1930
1 24 Ernst, Max and Dorothea Tanning, 1945-1986, undated
1 25-28 Kent, Rockwell and Sally (later, Sally Kent Gorton), 1945-1988
1 29 MacDonald-Wright, Stanton, 1941-1952, undated
1 30 Palen, Wolfgang, 1943-1950
1 31 Ray, Man and Juliet, 1950-1956, undated
1 32 Sapiro, Scotty, 1986-1992, undated
1 33 Tobey, Mark, 1928-1939, undated
1 34 Weston, Edward, 1929
1 35 W.P.A. (Holger Cahill, Dan Deffenbacher, Hilda Deutsch, Carl Morris, et al), 1938-1944, undated

Series 3: Writings and Notes, 1928-1993, undated
(Boxes 2-3; 1.5 linear ft)

This series is arranged as 2 subseries:

3.1: By Inverarity, 1928-1989, undated

Box Folder
2 Articles, A-Z (by title)
2 1 "Florence Dibble Bartlett,," 1984
2 2 "Haida,," undated
2 3 "The Museum of International Folk Art, Santa Fe, New Mexico,," 1952
2 4 "A New Structuralization for Organization of Visual Records,," 1950
2 5 "Phuket" (by J. and R. B. Inverarity), 1982
2 6 "Preservation of Water-Submerged, Partially Decayed Boats by Chemical Impregnation" (by Ray M. Seborg and Robert B. Inverarity), circa 1961
2 7 "Reading Microreproduction by Optical Magnification,," undated
2 8 "A Simplified Technique for Recording Museum Survey Data" (published in The Museologist), undated
2 9 "Temples of Pagan,," 1986
2 10 "Thoughts on the Organization of Museums" (published in Curator), undated
2 11 Untitled Article about Basket Maker "Spike" Draper (with photographs), 1957
2 12 Untitled Articles about Mark Tobey (with notes), undated
2 13 Untitled Articles about Trip to Queen Charlotte Islands to Study the Haida in 1932, undated
2 14 Untitled Articles (published and unpublished; various topics), 1958-1989, undated
2 15 Untitled Fragment, undated
2 Book, Tobey Remembered
2 16 Manuscript, undated
2 17 Illustrations, undated
2 18-19 Draft 1, undated
2 20 Draft 2, undated
2 21 Correspondence with Researchers and Publishers, 1971-1983
2 22 Letters from Mark Tobey (photocopies), 1928-1938, undated
2 23 Letters from Mark Tobey and Letters mentioning Tobey (typescript copies), 1928-1938, undated
2 24 Letters from Mark Tobey to Grace T. Stevenson (photocopies), 1950-1951
2 25 Notes, 1968, 1980, undated
2 26 "Possible Illustrations" and Design Ideas (includes original photographs), undated
2 27 Research Material (printed), 1940-1982, undated
2 28 Book Reviews (with related correspondence), 1958-1962, undated
2 Catalog, Notes Regarding the Inveraity Collection in the Museum of Mankind...
2 29 Manuscript, circa 1978
2 30-31 Drafts, circa 1978
2 32 Notes, circa 1978
2 33-34 Children's Books (with illustrations), 1939, undated
Box Folder
3 Journals
3 1 Journal, 1928-1930
3 2 Journal and Notes of Trip to Queen Charlotte Islands, Canada, to Study the Haida Indians, 1932
3 3 Journal Recording End of Tenure at Adirondack Museum, April 1965-January 1966
3 Notes
3 4 Color and Composition, 1931, undated
3 5 Inventions (with diagrams), 1955-1994, undated
3 6 Miscellaneous, 1954-1962, undated
3 Reports
3 7 European Museum Survey, 1964
3 8 "The Fred Archer School of Photography,," 1947
3 9 "Report to the Axel-Wenner Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research of a Brief Trip to the Scandinavian Countries and Other Part of Europe, June to July 1951,," 1952
3 10 "Summary Report, 'Visual Files Pilot Project,' to Board of Directors of the Human Relations Area Files, Inc.,," 1953
3 11 Talks and Lectures, 1952-1975, undated
3 12 Thesis for M.F.A., University of Scientific Method, Los Angeles, "The Social-Economic Position of the American Artist... A Brief Survey,," 1946

3.2: By Other Authors, 1947-1993

Box Folder
3 13 Cohea, Carol. "Florence Dibble Bartlett" (Women in New Mexico project), 1984
3 14 Hodge, F. W. Foreword to Art of the Northwest Coast Indians by Robert Bruce Inverarity, circa 1950
3 15 Ray, May. Lecture (transcript), 1947
3 16 Sanches, Jos� Benito. "The Life and Death of the First World" and "The Gods Come to Life on Earth" (text for exhibition labels), 1976
3 17 Whitlock, Katherine. Research Paper on Dr. Bruce Inverarity, 1993

Series 4: Subject Files, 1938-1990, undated
(Boxes 3-6, OV 19-20; 2.5 linear ft.)

Subject files, compiled for reference and research purposes, include a variety of printed material, photographs, correspondence and notes.

Box Folder
3 18 Adirondack Museum, 1955-1976, undated
3 19 Arizona Pioneers' Historical Society, 1954-1955
3 20 Cogswell Collection Appraisal, 1965
3 21-22 Columbia University/Sackler Foundation Symposium, "Early Chinese Art and Its Possible Influence in the Pacific Basin,," 1966-1972, undated
3 23 Folk Art, 1949-1953, undated
3 24 Fred Archer School of Photography, 1947-1949, undated
Box Folder
4 Information Storage and Retrieval
4 1 "Adirondack Museum Punchcard System I Developed for Photos,," circa 1954-1965
4 2-8 General Information (printed material), 1950s-1960s
4 9-12 Microviewer (invented by Inverarity), 1952-1964, undated
4 13-14 Visual Files Project (Human Relations Area Files, Inc.), 1950-1963
4 Inverarity Collection
4 15 "Collection Data, Dealers, etc.,," 1950-1977, undated
4 16 Consignments and Sales, 1987-1988
4 17 "Notes Regarding the Inverarity Collection in the Museum of Mankind, The Ethnography Department at the British Museum, London, England," by Robert Bruce Inverarity, circa 1978
Box Folder
5 1 Photographs and Catalog Information (bound volume), undated
5 2 Printed Material, 1976
5 3 Kent, Rockwell, 1964-1974, undated
5 4 Lake George Boats and Ships (historical reference file), 1960-1961
5 Museum of International Folk Art
5 5 Clippings, General, 1953-1955
5 6 Clippings re: Death of Florence Dibble Bartlett, 1954-1955
5 7 Clippings re: Inverarity's Dismissal, 1954-1955
5 8-10 Correspondence, 1949-1959
5 11 History, 1952-1953
5 12 Minutes, 1952-1953
5 13 Notes, 1949-1955, undated
5 14 Printed Material, 1953, undated
5 15 Reports, 1952-1954
5 16 Visual Files Pilot Project (Human Relations Area Files, Inc.), 1951-1953
(see also: Information Storage and Retrieval, Visual Files Project)
5 17 Museum of Navajo Ceremonial Art, 1950-1953
5 18 Peruvian Collection Purchased by Inverarity and Ralph Altman (photographs are by Inverarity), 1948
5 Philadelphia Maritime Museum
5 19 Correspondence, 1969-1976, undated
5 20 Gazela Primeiro, 1970-1994, undated
5 21 Notes on Gallery Installation (with sketches), 1970s
5 22 Publicity and General Information, 1969-1976, undated
5 23 Reports, 1969-1976
5 Photography
5 24 General Information (printed material), 1985-1990, undated
5 25-26 Lists and Notes, 1980s, undated
5 27 Releases, 1938-1983
5 28 Rights and Reproductions, 1983
5 29 Rights and Reproductions (Birmingham Museum of Art), 1987-1988, undated
5 30 Sale and Exhibition Inquiries, 1984-1989, undated
Box Folder
6 1 Preservation, 1955-1978, undated
6 2-7 Primitive Peoples, Costume and Ornament, undated
6 8 Travel, 1964-1975
6 9 Wenner-Gren Symposium, "The Use of Computers in Anthropology,," 1962
OV 19 Adirondack Museum Building Plans, 1957 and 1963
OV 20 Inverarity Collection, Printed Material (poster and broadside), 1976

Series 5: Art Work, circa 1840s-1969, undated
(Boxes 6, 12, 16, OV 21; 1.3 linear ft.)

Most of Inverarity's sketchbooks are in published books that were converted to sketchbooks by replacing most of the text block with tipped in sheets of drawing paper. In addition to pencil and ink drawings, and a small number of watercolors they include notes scattered throughout. Vol. 1 contains sketches of places in Washington and California, and includes designs for woodcarving. Vol. 2 contains sketches of places in Washington, Oregon, Montana, and the Midwest. Vols. 3, 4 and 5 contain sketches of places in Washington. Vols. 6 and 7 contain sketches of Alaska. Vol. 8 contains sketches of unidentified subjects. Notes of particular interest are on camouflage (Vol. 6) and artists' materials and techniques (Vol. 8).

Art work by other artists includes a gouache by Tobey, produced in his youth and said to be his first painting. Drawings include caricatures of Inverarity by Anfinson and unknown. Display panels for a small exhibit on Airbrush Stencil Prints produced by the WPA Federal Art Project include didactic text with photographs of the technique, sample stencils, prints at various stages of completion, and finished prints.

In addition, there are drawings among Inverarity's writings and notes (Series 3), among notes in subject files (Series 4) and filed with some of the WPA printed material (Series 8).

This series is arranged as 2 subseries:

5.1: By Inverarity, 1928-1969, undated

Box Folder
6 10 Design for Boeing Brochures, circa 1946
6 11-13 Drawings and Notes for Book Designs, 1967-1969
6 14 Drawings and Sketches, 1929-circa 1941, undated
6 Sketchbooks
6 15 Volumes 1 and 2, 1928-1941, undated
6 16 Volumes 3, 5, and 6, 1941-1942, undated
6 17 Volumes 7 and 8, undated

5.2: By Other Artists, circa 1840s-1964

Box Folder
6 18 Drawings (pencil, ink, and charcoal), Anfinson - Warshaw and Unknown, undated
  • Anfinson, Friatson
  • Bird, Reilly
  • Lozkins (?)
  • Polloen, A. L.
  • Royer, Dorothy
  • Warshaw, Howard
  • Unknown
6 Paintings
6 19 Inverarity, Madeline (oil portrait of Miss Wallace-Dunlap by Inverarity's great-great grandmother; framed), undated
6 20 Tobey, Mark (watercolor and gouache), undated
6 Prints
6 21 Barnes, Ray and Unknown, 1937, undated
6 22 Matulka, Jan (framed), undated
6 23 Sketches (pencil) by Mark Tobey, circa 1935
16 Airbrush Stencil Prints, WPA Federal Art Project Display, circa 1936-circa 1941
OV 21 Drawings of Inverarity House (interior and exterior), 1964

Series 6: Scrapbooks, 1928-1991, undated
(Boxes 7-8; 1.1 linear ft.)

Inverarity compiled five scrapbooks. Volumes 1 through 3 consist mainly of newspaper clippings and miscellaneous printed items concerning his career as an artist and teacher, WPA administrator, and museum director. In addition, volume 1 includes a small number of photographs. Volume 4 preserves items designed by Inverarity - book covers, letterheads, greeting cards, brochures, etc. - and biographical information. Volume 5, devoted to Inverarity's monograph Art of the Northwest Coast Indians (University of California Press, 1950), includes a small amount of correspondence and a few photographs as well as reviews and advertisements.

Box Folder
7 1 Vol. 1, 1928-1954
7 2 Vol. 2, 1936-1955
7 3 Vol. 3, 1956-1991
7 4 Vol. 4: Designs by Inverarity and Biographical Information, 1943-1979, undated
Box Folder
8 1 Vol. 5: Art of the Northwest Coast Indians, 1950-1951

Series 7: Sound Recordings, 1980-1990
(Box 8; 3 folders)

Box Folder
8 2 Robert Bruce Inverarity, interviewed by Craig Gilborn, September 18-19, 1990
(5 audiocassettes)
8 3 Ernie and Helen Johnson conversing with Robert Bruce and Jane Inverarity (about Inverarity's departure from the Museum of International Folk Art), September 30, 1980
(1 audiocassette with transcript)
8 4 Grace T. Stevenson conversing with Robert Bruce and Jane Inverarity (includes references to Mark Tobey and Morris Graves), March 1981
(1 audiocassette)

Series 8: Printed Material, 1902-1995, undated
(Boxes 8-11, 13, OV 22; 3.4 linear ft.)

WPA items relate to the Federal Art Project and consist of published administrative reports and clippings about the project, and printed items produced by the Federal Art Project.

Printed material by Inverarity includes articles on a wide variety of topics, his book Art of the Northwest Coast Indians (1950), and two published portfolios, 12 Photographs by R. B. Inverarity, F.R.S.A. (1940) and Moveable Masks and Figures of the North Pacific Coast Indians (1941). Among the printed material by other authors are articles, books, reports, and other items about or mentioning Inverarity, and books designed or illustrated by Inverarity.

Miscellaneous items include a catalog of the Cornish School - where Inverarity met Mark Tobey and later taught - and catalogs and brochures of Freemont College/University and the University of Scientific Method where he studied. Also of interest are a few ephemeral items designed by Inverarity for the Adirondack Museum and others.

Additional printed material can be found as attachments to correspondence (Series 2), with subject files (Series 4), and in scrapbooks (Series 6).

This series is organized into 4 subseries:

8.1: WPA, circa 1936-circa 1941, undated

Box Folder
8 Federal Art Project
8 5 Booklets, 1940-1941, undated
8 6-7 General Reports and Directives, circa 1936-1941, undated
8 8 Clippings, 1938-1941
8 9 Designs (drawings and printed items), 1936, undated
8 10 Exhibition Notices, 1936-1940, undated
8 11 Federal Sponsored Community Art Centers, undated
8 Federal Art Project, Material by State
8 12 California, 1937-1939, undated
8 13 Illinois, 1938-1939, undated
8 14 Iowa, 1938, undated
8 15 New York, 1937-1941
8 16 Oregon, 1937-1941, undated
8 17 Utah, 1938-1940, undated
8 18-19 Washington, 1938-1940, undated
8 20 Federal Works Agency Technical Series, Art Circulars Nos. 4 and 5, 1940

8.2: By Inverarity, 1930-1976, undated

Box Folder
8 21-22 Articles, Books, Brochures, Pamphlets, etc., 1930-1950
Box Folder
9 1-7 Articles, Books, Brochures, Pamphlets, etc., 1950-1976, undated
13 (sol) Moveable Masks and Figures of the North Pacific Coast Indians, 1941
13 (sol) 12 Photographs by R. B. Inverarity, F.R.S.A., 1940
OV 22 Maps, 1943-1945
OV 22 "Navy War Map No. 1: The Mediterranean"
OV 22 "Navy War Map No. 2: South China Sea Area"
OV 22 "Navy War Map No. 3: North Sea Area"

8.3: By Other Authors, 1902-1995, undated

Box Folder
9 8-17 About or Mentioning Inverarity, 1930-1986
Box Folder
10 1-2 About or Mentioning Inverarity, 1987-1995, undated
10 3-7 Books Designed or Illustrated by Inverarity, 1958-1969
  • Azarpay, Guitty. Urartian Art and Archaeology: A Chronological Study
  • Blum, Shirley Neilsen. Early Netherlandish Triptychs: A Study in Patronage
  • Clark, Ella E. Indian Legends of the Pacific Northwest (illustrated by Inverarity)
  • Geiringer, Karl. Hayden: A Creative Life in Music
  • Robinson, Geroid Tanquary. Rural Russia Under the Old Regime
  • Sauer, Carl O. Northern Mists (jacket drawing by Inverarity)
  • The School of American Research and the Museum of New Mexico. Morleyana: A Collection of Writings in Memorium, Sylvanus Griswold Morley, 1883- 1948
10 8 Book Inscribed to Duncan G. Inverarity (father of Robert Bruce), 1911
10 9-11 Books Inscribed to Robert Bruce Inverarity (by Max Ernst, Hilaire Hiler, Sally Kent, and Man Ray), 1934-1964
10 12 Brochures for Boeing Designed and Illustrated by Inverarity, circa 1946-1947
10 Clippings
10 13 About Artists (A-Z by artist), 1949-1989, undated
10 14 About or Mentioning Inverarity, 1929-1957, undated
10 15 Miscellaneous Subjects, 1932-1992, undated
Box Folder
11 Designed by Inverarity
11 1 Adirondack Museum Ephemera, 1950s-1960s
11 2 Miscellaneous Items, 1945, undated
Box Folder
10 16-17 Harriman Alaska Expedition, Vols. I and II (Duncan G. Inverarity [father] was a professional photographer who accompanied the expedition), 1902
13 Color Harmony Manual (Container Corporation of America), 1948

8.4: Miscellaneous Printed Items, 1931-1988, undated

Box Folder
11 3 Exhibition Announcements and Invitations (A-Z by artist), 1942-1988, undated
11 4 Programs, undated
11 5 Reproductions (Napoleonic battle scene; jester), undated
11 6 School Catalogs and Brochures (Cornish School, Freemont College/University, and University of Scientific Method), 1931-circa 1948

Series 9: Photographs, circa 1870s-1990, undated
(Boxes 11, 14-17, OV 23; 3.0 linear ft.)

Photographs of art work are arranged by artist. Many photographs of Inverarity's work are views of framed items hanging in his home. Other views show large numbers of framed items gathered into one room (on chair seats and propped up against furniture) in order to record the maximum number of items in one picture; in many cases, these are portraits of artists photographed by Inverarity. Photographs of people consist of artists (including original and copy prints of portraits by Inverarity), friends, colleagues, and various groups.

Photographs of places include museums where Inverarity was Director (Museum of International Folk Art and the Adirondack Museum ), places where he lived (Ridgefield, Conn. and La Jolla, Calif.), and travel pictures (Amsterdam, Burma, Egypt, Greece, Italy, Nepal, Scandinavia, and Thailand). Of particular interest are a large number of photographs taken on his 1932 trip to British Columbia to study the Haida Indians. In addition, there are several nineteenth century photographs of family homes and various locations in South America, probably taken by his father.

Most of the WPA photographs document work of the Federal Art Project in Washington State. Multiple photographs mounted on many large cardboard panels (probably for display) show individual works of art, exhibition installations, and views of various art centers, etc. Other photographs are of individual works of art and include some Index of American Design drawings, mosaic procedures, and the mosaic for the Municipal Auditorium in Long Beach, California. Among the miscellaneous subjects are a view of the microreader invented by Inverarity, and his art photographs - boats, figure studies, industrial scenes, and landscapes.

Photographs known to have been taken by Inverarity are clearly identified. Prints, slides, and color transparencies are interfiled. In addition, a small number of photographs are attached to Series 1: Correspondence, in many subject files (Series 4), and in Series 6: Scrapbooks. Of particular note is Man Ray's photograph of his studio, sent as a greeting card (Christmas?) in 1952 and filed with correspondence.

This series is arranged as 5 subseries:

9.1: Art Work, circa 1950-circa 1970s

Box Folder
11 7 Ernst, Max (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 8 Graves, Morris (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 9 Illustrations for Art of the Northwest Coast Indians by Robert Bruce Inverarity, circa 1950
11 10 Inverarity, Madeline (portrait of Miss Wallace-Dunlop by Inverarity's great-great grandmother; photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 11-12 Inverarity, Robert Bruce (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 13 Inverarity, Robert Bruce, Paintings for U.S. Navy (color transparencies), undated
11 14 Inverarity, Robert Bruce, Portraits of Artists (framed photographs) displayed in his home; photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 15-16 Inverarity [Robert Bruce and Jane] Collection of Northwest Coast Indian Art, Museum of Mankind, London, circa 1970s
11 17 Tobey, Mark (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 18 Unidentified Artists (photographs by Inverarity), 1989, undated
11 19 Unidentified Artists, undated

9.2: People, 1920s-1979, undated

Box Folder
11 20 Artists (contact sheets with multiple portraits; photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 21 Ball, Eliot Porter (photographs by Inverarity), circa 1963-1964
11 22 Byner, Winter and Ashley Montague (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 23 Derbyshire, Dr. (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 24 Deutsch, Hilda [Mrs. Carl Morris] (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 25 Duchamp, Marcel (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 26 Ernst, Max (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 27 Ernst, Max and Dorothea Tanning (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 28 Feitelson, Lorser (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 29 Fitzsimmons, James (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 30 Frug�, August (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 31 Graves, Morris (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 32 Groups of Artists (photographs by Inverarity), 1949
11 33 Groups, undated
11 34 Guldbeck, Lori and Per, 1958
11 35 Haley, John (photographs by Inverarity), 1950
11 36 Hiler, Hilaire (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 37 Inverarity, Jane (photographs by Inverarity), 1956-1976, undated
11 38 Inverarity, Jane with Others (photographs by Inverarity), 1976, 1983
11 39 Inverarity, Jane and Robert Bruce, 1970s
11 40 Inverarity, Robert Bruce, 1952-circa 1979, undated
11 41 Inverarity, Robert Bruce with Others, 1920s-1958, undated
11 42 Kent, Rockwell (photographs by Inverarity), 1963, undated
11 43 LeBrun, Rico (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 44 Lefebvre, Ren� (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 45 Lovacrubias, Miguel, 1954
11 46 Lundeberg, Helen (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 47 MacDonald-Wright, Stanton (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 48 Morris, Carl (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 49 Perit, Suzy (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 50 Ray, Julie Man (photographs by Inverarity), 1948
11 51 Ray, Man (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 52 Reagh, Bill (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 53 Royer, Dorothy (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 54 Stazack, Carol (photographs by Inverarity), 1976
11 55 Tanning, Dorothea (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 56 Tobey, Mark (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 57 Tobey, Mark, undated
11 58 Val Clear and Kenneth Downer (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 59 Warshaw, Howard (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 60 Wassar, Art and Ellie (photographs by Inverarity), 1976
11 61 Whitman, Walt (possibly by Matthew Brady; contemporary copy), undated
11 62 Wunderlich, Rudi (photographs by Inverarity), 1957
11 63 Unidentified ("A.E." [daughter?] and unknown woman; photographs by Inverarity), 1976, undated
14 (sol) Deutsch, Hilda [Mrs. Carl Morris] (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Duchamp, Marcel (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Ernst, Max (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Ernst, Max and Dorothea Tanning (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Feitelson, Lorser (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Fitzsimmons, James (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Graves, Morris (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Graves, Morris and Malcolm Roberts (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Haley, John (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Hiler, Hilaire (photographs by Interarity), undated
14 (sol) Inverarity, Jane (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Inverarity, Robert Bruce (self portrait), undated
14 (sol) Inverarity, Robert Bruce (photograph by Douglas C. Sly), 1947
14 (sol) Knowles, Joe (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Le Brun, Rico (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Lundeberg, Helen (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Mac Donald-Wright, Stanton (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Morris, Carl (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Perit, Suzy (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Petric, Mrs. Ludin (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Ray, Julie Man (photographs by Inveraritiy), undated
14 (sol) Ray, Man (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Royer, Dorothy (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Swan, Charles (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Tanning, Dorothea (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Tobey, Mark (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Val Clear, Charles and Kenneth Downing (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Warshaw, Howard (photographs by Inverarity), undated
14 (sol) Wessels, Glenn (photographs by Inverarity), undated

9.3: Places, circa 1870s-1990, undated

Box Folder
11 64-65 Adirondack Museum, 1957, 1971, undated
11 66 Adirondack Museum (photograph album, vol. 1), undated
11 67 Amsterdam (photographs by Inverarity), 1962
11 68-69 British Columbia (trip to study Haida Indians; photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 70 Dikill, Peganum, Istanbul (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 71 Family Homes, circa 1870s-1880s
11 72 Greece and Egypt (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 73 Italy, circa 1870s-1880s
11 74 La Jolla, Calif. (photographs by Inverarity), 1976
11 75 Mt. St. Helens, Calif. (photographs by Inverarity), 1990
11 76 Museum of International Folk Art, 1953, undated
11 77 Ridgefield, Conn. (photographs by Inverarity), circa 1957-1958, 1976
11 78 Rome; New York City Hotel and Airport (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 79 St. Paul's Church, circa 1880s
11 80 Samish Island, Wash. (photographs by Inverarity), 1954
11 81 South America, 1870s
11 82 Unidentified (photographs by Inverarity), undated
15 (sol) Adirondack Museum (photograph album, vol. 2), undated
15 (sol) Burma; Nepal; Scandinavia; Thailand; Unidentified (photographs by Inverarity), undated
15 (sol) Family Houses, circa 1880s

9.4: WPA, circa 1936-circa 1941

Box Folder
11 83-84 Mosaic Procedures, circa 1936-circa 1941
11 85 Washington State WPA Federal Art Project, circa 1936-circa 1941
11 86 Washington State WPA Federal Art Project black and white negatives, circa 1936-circa 1941
OV 23 Municipal Auditorium Mosaic, Long Beach, Calif., 1938
16-17 Washington State WPA Federal Art Project, circa 1936-circa 1941

9.5: Miscellaneous Subjects, 1957-1981, undated

Box Folder
11 87 Box Collection (photographs by Inverarity), undated
11 88 Broadside, "Monumental Grandeur of the Mississippi Valley..." (photograph by Inverarity), undated
11 89 "Gold Thread Pillow Case taken by my grandfather when 92 Highlanders raided Queen's Palace, New Delhi" (35-mm color slides by Inverarity), 1981
11 90 Microreader Invented by Inverarity, 1957
15 (sol) Boats (photographs by Inverarity), undated
15 (sol) Figure Studies (photographs by Inverarity), undated
15 (sol) Industrial Subjects (photographs by Inverarity), undated
15 (sol) Landscapes (photographs by Inverarity), undated
15 (sol) Pacific Northwest Culture (photographs by Inverarity), undated