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David Smith papers, 1926-1965

Smith, David, 1906-1965

Muralist, Painter, Engraver, Printmaker, Sculptor


Collection Information

Size: 6 Microfilm reels

Summary: Correspondence; sketchbooks; sketches; scrapbooks; exhibition catalogs; photographs; business records; and printed material.
Correspondence, mostly routine business dealing with exhibitions, sales, purchases of equipment, and other business matters, and from family and friends in the art world, including Alexander Calder, Herman Cherry, Robert M. Coates, Helen Frankenthaler, Clement Greenberg, Robert Motherwell, Kenneth Noland, George Rickey, Marian Willard and others; sketchbooks, sketches, and notebook, annotated and relating to his sculptural work, 1930s-1940s; lectures, speeches, and writings; an 18 page transcript of an interview of Smith conducted by Thomas Hess, June 1964; photographs, mostly small snapshots of Smith's work, often annotated with descriptive information; scrapbook materials; articles; exhibition catalogs and announcements; and publications.

Biographical/Historical Note

David Smith (1906-1965) was a sculptor from Bolton Landing, N.Y. Began his career as a painter. Studied at Art Students League. Married artist Dorothy Dehner. Was one of the first sculptors to develop a uniquely American abstract style. Worked in monumental style, incorporating painted metal and welding techniques into his work. Smith died in an automobile accident in May 1965.


Lent for microfilming by Rebecca and Candida Smith.

Language Note

English .

How to Use This Collection

Alternative Forms Available

35mm microfilm reels NDSmith 1-NDSmith 6 available for use at Archives of American Art offices only.

Restrictions on Access

ACCESS RESTRICTED; written permission required.

Patrons must use microfilm copy.

How to Cite This Collection

David Smith papers, 1926-1965. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.