Skip to main content

More Information | A Finding Aid to the Eldzier Cortor papers, circa 1930s-2015, bulk 1972-2015

Eldzier Cortor papers, circa 1930s-2015, bulk 1972-2015

More Information

A Finding Aid to the Eldzier Cortor papers,
circa 1930s-2015, bulk 1972-2015
in the Archives of American Art
Justin Brancato and Rayna Andrews
Scope and Content Note
The papers of painter and printmaker Eldzier Cortor measure 3.1 linear feet and date from circa 1930s to 2015, with the bulk of the papers dating from 1972 to 2015. The papers contain biographical material, correspondence, professional files, exhibition and gallery files, writings, printed material, artwork, and photographs.
Biographical material consists of awards certificates; Cortor's artist biography; an obituary and prayer cards for his father in law; an address book; and a Christmas list.
Correspondence includes letters from Cortor's family; correspondence with or about individuals or organizations; and general correspondence. Individuals included in the general correspondence are Acklyn Lynch, Leontine Collier, Violetta Harrigan, Halima Taha, David C. Driskell, Carol Anderson, and Betye Saar. Art institutions represented in this series include Sylvan Cole Gallery, Anderson Gallery, and Kenkeleba House.
Professional files include materials related to the Cosby Collection of Fine Arts; publishing; materials related to fake Cortor works; the Public School Mural Project; teaching files; lists of possible titles for paintings; financial documents; materials related to painting and etching plates for storage; and notes of museum and gallery contacts.
Exhibition and gallery files include correspondence; contracts and agreements; exhibition announcements; inventories; other exhibition materials; clippings; press releases; photographs and photocopied images of artwork; and photographs of exhibitions.
Writings consist primarily of essays and articles about Eldzier Cortor. Also included are his answers to a questionnaire about art, a diary, and notes, as well as hand-copied excerpts of reviews.
Printed material includes exhibition announcements, exhibition catalogs, newsletters, clippings, research and source material, and books.
Artwork includes ink and watercolor sketches from Cortor's time as a student at the Art Institute of Chicago. This series also includes additional sketches, sketchbooks, and a collage by K. Carracio.
Photographs depict Cortor, other individuals, his artwork, and exhibitions. There are also photographs from his time in Cuba and Haiti (circa 1950s).
Language
English
Provenance
The material on reel N70-47 was lent for microfilming in 1970 by Eldzier Cortor and subsequently returned to him. Cortor donated his papers to the Archives of American Art in 2009. Additional material was donated in 2016 by his son, Michael Cortor.
Related Material
Materials on reel N70-47, which were loaned to the Archives of American Art for microfilming, include biographical material; correspondence; printed material; materials related to exhibitions; photographs; and sketchbooks. Three photographs from that microfilm appear in this collection (Box 3, Folder 19).
Funding
Funding for the 2017 processing of this collection was provided by the Henry Luce Foundation.
Processing Information
The papers were originally processed by Justin Brancato in March, 2010. The additional materials were merged and processed in 2017 by Rayna Andrews, with funding from the Luce Foundation.