Stefan Hirsch and Elsa Rogo papers, 1926-1985

Hirsch, Stefan, b. 1899 d. 1964
Painter, Muralist, Printmaker
Active in New York, N.Y.

Rogo, Elsa, b. 1901 d. 1996
Painter, Art teacher
Active in Bennington,Vt.; Mexico; N.Y.

Collection size: 16.0 linear ft.
Addition 1.1 linear ft.

Collection Summary: Correspondence, writings, art work, photographs, printed material, motion picture film, sound recordings, and financial and legal records document the artistic, teaching, and journalism careers of husband and wife Stephan Hirsch and Elsa Rogo.

Correspondence is with friends, family, and colleagues, concerning commissions, exhibitions, travel, and teaching (1929-1962). Included are correspondence with Edith Halpert of the Downtown Gallery, 1930-1933; Holger Cahill of the Federal Art Project, 1935-1937; and A. Conger Goodyear, in his capacity as Chair of the Exhibition of Contemporary Art for the New York World's Fair, 1939. Other correspondents include Josef Albers, Kenneth Callahan, Walter Gropius, Lincoln Kirstein, Robert Laurent, Alain Locke, Jean Lurcat and Ralph Mayer.

Writings consist of mss. drafts of writings and lectures on art (ca. 1930-1960), including a manuscript of Hamilton Easter Field's The Master Painter's Materials. Teaching material is from Bennington and Bard colleges. Art work includes drawings, oil and watercolor sketches, and sketchbooks.

Photographs are mainly those taken by Elsa Rogo documenting international diplomatic meetings, among them the 1945 United Nations Conference and the Chapultepec Inter-American Conference; and Mexican murals and muralists. Printed material consists of art periodicals, exhibition catalogs, and newspaper clippings.

ADDITION: Correspondence, ca. 1930-1938, includes letters from Stefan Hirsch, Mexican painter Carlos Mérida, Frances Toor (editor of "Mexican Folkways"), actor Charles Laughton, Herlinda T. de Sáenz, editor Burton C. Hoffman regarding Rogo's book "Walls and Volcanos: The Creative Impulse of the Mexican People" (1937), and others. Printed material concerns the Rogo's Painting School for Mexican Children in Taxco, Mexico; Bennington College schedules and memoranda. Photographs are of Rogo and Hirsch as well as President John F. Kennedy in San Jose. Art work includes draft writings; pencil figure studies possibly by Hirsch or Rogo, four folios, undated; three pencil figure studies by Mexican artist Rául Anguiano (b. 1915), a friend of Hirsch and Rogo; a reproduction of a lithograph by an unknown artist; and miscellany. Eleven short reels of 16 mm motion picture film, including 10 reels shot in Mexico between 1935 and 1941, and one reel shot at Bard College in 1941. Also found are five short reels of 8 mm motion picture film shot in Ogunquit, Maine and New York City in the early 1930s, and 2 sound recordings, one of a personal nature, and the other of a Spanish radio show with an appearance by Elsa Rogo.

Biographical/Historical Note: Artists, art educators, journalist; Annandale-on-Hudson, N.Y.

Donated 1996 by the Elsa Rogo estate, via Sylvia Siskin, executrix. An addition was donated 2002 by professor James Oles, Art Department, Wellesley College, Wellesley, MA on behalf of Sylvia Siskin.

Funding for the preservation of the Stefan Hirsch and Elsa Rogo home movies shot in Mexico was provided by the National Film Preservation Foundation.

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