Zorach family papers, 1900-1987

Zorach family

Collection size: 4.4 linear ft.

Collection Summary: The Zorach Family papers measure 4.4 linear feet and consist of materials relating to the lives and careers of sculptor and painter William Zorach, his wife painter and weaver Marguerite, and their children, painter and multi-media artist Dahlov Ipcar and collector and art dealer Tessim Zorach. The bulk of the papers consists of letters to Tessim regarding his parent's artwork. Additional materials include scattered letters to William Zorach; writings and notes by William, Marguerite, and Tessim; a sketchbook and drawings by William; prints by Marguerite; Marguerite's scrapbook; printed materials; and photographs of the Zorach family and of William Zorach in his studio and at work.

Biographical/Historical Note: William Zorach (1887-1966) was a sculptor and painter from New York, N.Y. Marguerite (1887-1968) was a painter and weaver. Their daughter, Dahlov, is a painter and multi-media artist. Their son, Tessim, is a collector and art dealer. William Zorach was born in Eurburg, Lithuania, and immigrated to Ohio during his childhood. His surname at this time was Finkelstein. He worked in a lithographic plant in Cleveland before studying art in Paris, where he met Marguerite Thompson, a native of California. They were married in 1912 and returned to the United States. William continued his studies in New York, and taught at the Art Students League. Following the birth of a son, Tessim, and a daughter, Dahlov, Marguerite began creating embroidered tapestries in addition to her paintings. In 1923, the Zorachs bought property in Robinhood, Maine, and spent winters at a studio in Brooklyn, N.Y.

Tessim Zorach donated the Zorach Family papers to the Archives of American Art in 1982.

Funding for the processing of this collection was provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art.

How to Use this Collection

  • Read the Finding Aid for this collection
  • The collection is available on 35 mm microfilm reels 4957-4961 at Archives of American Art offices, and through interlibrary loan. Researchers should note that the order of the collection on microfilm may not match the order of the originals as described in the finding aid.
  • Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
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Related Materials

William Zorach loaned some papers for microfilming to the Archives of American Art in 1959. These papers were microfilmed onto reels NY59/1-NY59/4, and NY59/19 and returned to the artist. They are not included in the container list of this finding aid.
The Archives of American Art holds the Dahlov Ipcar papers, 1906-1997. Also found is one oral history interview with William Zorach conducted by by John D. Morse on April 2, 1959 and an oral history interview with Dahlov Ipcar conducted by Robert F. Brown on November 13, 1979.
The bulk of William Zorach's papers are held by the Library of Congress.