Scope and Contents
The Andy Nasisse files relating to self-taught artists measure 0.8 linear feet and date from 1979 to 1986, with additional undated materials. Included are artist files on twenty-five self-taught artists. Files consist primarily of black and white photographs of artists, their artworks, and photographs of unidentified artworks. Also included is a letter discussing artist Howard Finster's first dealer, Jeffrey Camp, and in which Nasisse offers his advice to Finster to limit production of his work. An audio recording of an interview with Miles Carpenter conducted by Nasisse, and a documentary about J. B. Murray, A Video Documentary of an Artist and His Work, are also present in these files. The documentary features many of Murray's paintings and drawings, as well as his comments on his art and visions.
The artists included in the files are Eldren M. (E. M.) Bailey, Miles Carpenter, Tessie Carroll, Emanuel "Litto" Damonte, Samuel Perry (S.P.) Dinsmoor, Sam Doyle, John Ehn, Howard Finster, Laura Pope Forrester, Dilmus Hall, Irene Hall, Bessie Harvey, St. EOM (Eddie Owens Martin), Jeff McKissack, John Milkovitch, J. B. Murray, Grandma Tressa Prisbrey, Dow Pugh, W.T. Ratcliffe (or Ratliff), William Carlton Rice (Mr. Rice), Royal Robertson, James "Son Ford" Thomas, Mose Tolliver, Frank van Zant (Chief Rolling Mountain Thunder), and Brother Joseph Zoetl.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The Andy Nasisse files relating to self-taught artists were donated to the Archives of American Art by Andy Nasisse in 1985.
Also found in the Archives of American Art are the Photographs and videos of self-taught artists; Willie Ann Wright photographs; Howard Finster papers; John F. Turner research material on Howard Finster; Howard Finster interview and recordings; Videos and slides on Dilmus Hall, Mary T. Smith, and J.B. Murry; Willem Volkersz interviews; and J. B. Murray drawings. There is also an oral history interview with Howard Finster conducted by Liza Kirwin in 1984.
The California State University, Channel Islands holds the Prisbrey bottle village collection. The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill holds the Judith McWillie papers. The University of Georgia Special Collections Libraries holds the Howard Finster collection and the Howard Finster Tapes.
Funding for the processing of this collection was provided by the Henry Luce Foundation.
This collection was minimally processed and a finding aid prepared in 2019 by Candice Yates, supervised by Rayna Andrews with funding from the Henry Luce Foundation.